ON THE HISTORY OF THE STUDY OF SCYTHIAN SITES AT DNIPRО NADPORIZHZHYA AREA (THE BURIAL GROUND NEAR THE 3rd QUARRY OF DNIPROBUD)


Keywords: Scythian period, cemetery, stone pavements, funeral rite, weaponry, pottery

Abstract

During the period between First and Second World Wars a large-scale archaeological research was carried out in connection with the construction of the Dnieper Hydroelectric Station (the DniproHES). Large number of ancient sites felt into the area of flooding and destruction. In order to study them the Dniprobud expedition was organized which carried out significant excavations in 1927—1932 under the head of D. I. Yavornytskyi.

Among the excavated sites there was also the necropolis located on the eastern side of the 3rd quarry of the Dniprobud, on the right bank of the modern Zaporizhzhya city, on a high rocky slope of the Old Dnieper. The works took place in September — early October 1931 headed by the Dniprobud expedition member P. I. Smolichev. At the time of the excavation most of the necropolis included more than a dozen stone pavements had been destroyed. Only two burials survived under single-layer stone pavements with a diameter of 5.6—8 m. A menhir-like stone was recorded near grave 1. Single burials of the necropolis were made in catacombs with stone chambers’ barriers. Supposedly a child and a warrior were buried. Child’s burial was without grave goods. The man was accompanied by the arrowheads and pot.

The necropolis near the 3rd quarry of Dniprobud is a part of the whole system of Scythian necropolises with moundless burials on the Lower Dnieper. The area of such necropolises coincides with the Scythian settlement network. Settlements are often located near such necropolises which gives grounds to connect these burials with the population of such settlements. The topography of the necropolis on the slope above the Dnieper is typical for burial mounds in the Dnieper area. Burials made of stone are also typical for this region. This tradition dates back to the Bronze Age and is also known during the pre-Scythian period. The graves near the 3rd quarry of Dniprobud can be dated to the 4th century BC based on the types of burial structures and grave goods. Moreover, they can be considered to belong to the local ordinary nomadic Scythian population which began to change their way of life to the settled one. However, it preserved typical traditions of nomads’ funeral rites. In addition, the implementation of burials under stone pavements may indicate that the new ethnic substrate of the region, formed in Scythian Age, may have included some part of the aboriginal population that lived here since the Bronze Age and pre-Scythian times.

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Published
2022-04-06
How to Cite
Mogylov, O. D. (2022). ON THE HISTORY OF THE STUDY OF SCYTHIAN SITES AT DNIPRО NADPORIZHZHYA AREA (THE BURIAL GROUND NEAR THE 3rd QUARRY OF DNIPROBUD). Archaeology and Early History of Ukraine, 42(1), 256-263. https://doi.org/10.37445/adiu.2022.01.18