The Discovery of Altÿnkazgan

in Ancient Civilizations from Scythia to Siberia
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This article is devoted to the recently discovered site from the Hunnic period within the territory of the Mangÿshlak Peninsula (Kazakhstan). Inside a stone enclosure the silver facing of a saddle was found bearing depictions of animals and birds. The article provides a cultural interpretation of the site and a stylistic and semantic analysis of the depictions on the facings.

The Discovery of Altÿnkazgan

in Ancient Civilizations from Scythia to Siberia

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References

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1

Dmitriev 1979fig. 1.

2

On this see Akhmedov 201219-20fig. 2.

3

Rapoport Trudnovskaya 1979fig. 1 3-6.

4

Rapoport Trudnovskaya 1979158fig. 7.

5

Zasetskaya 199484-85.

6

Rapoport Trudnovskaya 1979165.

7

Yagodin 2014266.

8

Moshkova 1984200-201.

9

Moshkova 1984201.

10

Komar 201389.

11

See the materials described in Botalov 2009362-408.

12

Komar 2013100.

13

Zasetskaya 1994pl. 2 7 10.

14

Zasetskaya 1994pl. 4 7 35 41 47.

15

Zasetskaya 198472-74fig. 2.

16

Ambroz 1973fig. 2; Ambroz 1989 fig. 7.

17

See for example Dmitriev 1997219fig. 5 ab; Vaïnshteïn 1966 fig. 40; Vaïnshteïn & Kryukov 1984 fig. 16.

18

Vaïnshteïn 1966pls. xxi.

20

Kÿzlasov 1979137-139.

21

Vainshtein & Kryukov 1984129-130.

22

Ambroz 1979229.

24

Akhmedov 201224.

25

See Evtyukhova 1948figs. 84-86.

26

Savinov 200519.

27

Polos’mak 1994fig. 21.

28

Kubarev 1987pl. lxix.

29

See for example Bogdanov 2006pl. lxxxv.

30

Kun 200046.

31

Ryabintsev 2001338.

32

Starodubtsev Zorin Shpilev 201497-98fig. 124.

33

See for example Zasetskaya 198472-73.

34

Ol’khovskiï 2001107.

Figures

  • View in gallery
    Map showing the location of the Altÿnkazgan site.
  • View in gallery
    View of enclosure No. 15 after the walls had been cleared.
  • View in gallery
    Alÿtnkazgan. Plan of enclosure No. 15 after the clearing of the standing construction. 1-3: clusters of pottery and the place where vessels were found dug into the ground (reconstruction of complete forms); 4: a cluster of chalk waste (remains of artefacts?); 5: find-spot of the ceremonial saddle; 6: grave from the ethnographic period (?); 7: dromos leading into a catacomb burial and vessels from the grave.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the pommel.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the cantle of the saddle.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the front end of a saddle flap.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the front end of a saddle flap.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the rear end of a saddle flap.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver facing from the rear end of a saddle flap.
  • View in gallery
    Altÿnkazgan. Silver details from the saddle. 1, 2: parts of the whip; 3: plates with holes and rivets at their ends; 4: small bells with tongues; 5: earring-like rings attached to shield-like plates with rivets; 6: triangular shaped rivets; 7: an earring-like ring suspended from the centre of a shield-like plate casing in the shape of an elongated triangle.
  • View in gallery
    Reconstruction of the saddle from Altÿnkazgan.
  • View in gallery
    Evolution of saddle pommels. 1: facings from Altÿnkazgan; 2: facings from Kudÿrgé; 3: facings from Kopensky Chaatas.

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