Excavations at the Marché-aux-Herbes or the « Hallettes » at Compiègne in the Department of Oise were carried out between 1991-1993. They took place in the North-West part of the Palatial Complex at Compiègne, on its periphery. In the early Middle Ages, the settlement is characterized by a succession of dwellings, for which stone has been largely used, and protected by very large dry ditches. Potsherds of glass and pieces of marble, as weIl as coins, specific remnants of bones such as those of the crane, the swan, the sturgeon and the « smoothed and painted » ceramics, bear witness to the daily life.
In the course of the XIIth century, which is a crucial period in the history of Compiègne, the organization of space changes. It has to be correlated with the granting of the surrounding areas of the Carolingian Palace to the Saint-Corneille clergy. Then, at the beginning of the XIIIth century, part of the se areas was appropriated by the middle class. A rivalry for the possession of the territories between the clergy, the middle class and the King, arose. It resulted in the creation of a large square (where the excavations took place) surrounded by blocks of houses which were to disappear in 1945.