THE EARRINGS OF THE SVITLOVODSK CEMETERY


Keywords: Scythians, burial ground, jewelry, earrings, Northern Pontic region.

Abstract

Scythian tribes and their North Pontic neighbors had a magnificent set of jewelry in their everyday life: beads, bracelets, appliques for costume decoration, rings, earrings, torques, pins.

One of these categories, the earrings, is widely represented in the large Svitlovodsk cemetery on the south of the Dnieper Right Bank Forest-Steppe. During the 1975—1990 by archaeological expeditions under the direction of N. M. Bokiy and I. A. Kozyr more than 160 graves of Scythian Age have been excavated.

A total of 45 items were found in 34 graves (21 % of the total). They are ring-shaped and sometimes decorated with beads or pendants. More often, the earrings have been put into female burials. Sometimes one earring has been occurred in the graves of male warriors.

The ring-shaped earrings are made of bronze wire. One end is usually sharpened. This is the most numerous group including 19 items (42 % of the total) from 16 burials.

Twisted wire hoop earrings (5 items, making up 11 % of all earrings, come from 4 burials). Moreover, 3 items are silver, 2 are bronze. They have been found jnly in female tombs.

Hoop earrings with curved ends. 4 specimens (almost 9% of earrings) have been found in two graves with buried women.

Ring-shaped smooth earrings with beads are the second largest type in Svitlovodsk, including 11 items (24 % of earrings from 11 graves). The body is usually bronze, only once it is silver. The beads made of glass, less often of copper, bone, bronze. Usually one bead was set onto body. In several cases 2, 3 and 4 such decorations have been recorded. This type is the most frequent attribute of female burials, sometimes of a child and a teenager, in one case of a wealthy male warrior.

Hoop earrings with twisted body and bead. Two specimens (over  4% of earrings) come from 2 assemblages. They are made of bronze and electrum.

Bronze hoop earrings with pendants. Two items (4 % of earrings) come from two graves. In one case the pendant was made of the animal tooth, in the second it was the bronze ring.

Earrings in the shape of a stylized duck. Two copies (4 % of earrings) were found in graves 70 and 77. In Svitlovodsk, these jewelry were found in graves belonging to poor community members.This category of jewelry from Svitlovodsk shows the part of the set of jewelry of the common population of Scythia.

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2020-06-09
How to Cite
Mogylov, O. D. (2020). THE EARRINGS OF THE SVITLOVODSK CEMETERY . Archaeology and Early History of Ukraine, 36(3), 375-382. Retrieved from https://adiu.com.ua/index.php/journal/article/view/295