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Hearth structures in the religious pattern of Early Bronze Age northeast Anatolia

  • Turan Takaoğlu (a1)

The archaeology of Early Bronze Age northeast Anatolia has often been characterised by the dominant presence of the so-called Karaz Ware, a black burnished ware often decorated in relief. In northeast Anatolia, this distinctive ceramic tradition is represented in the archaeological contexts of major excavated sites of the Erzurum plain: Karaz, Güzelova, Pulur, Büyüktepe, and Sos Höyük (Kosay, Turfan 1959; Kosay, Vary 1964; 1967; Sagona et al 1993; Sagona et al 1996). Nevertheless, it is not something unique to the sites of northeast Anatolia, but a widely occurring phenomenon at third millennium BC sites from Transcaucasia to Syria-Palestine under other names such as Kura-Araxes Ware, Early Transcaucasian Ware, or Khirbet Kerak Ware (Burney 1989: 45ff; Edens 1995: 53). Even though it is handmade, its quality, manufacture and distinctive relief decoration, and its widespread distribution in northeast Anatolia and surrounding regions, demonstrate that it had a cultural and economic value attached to it. The widespread use of this pottery may be explained as evidence of a movement of nomadic pastoral groups or traders who also brought their pots or potting techniques with them. Although the newcomers responsible for this phenomenon appear to be small in number, the intermixing of the older local Late Chalcolithic populations and newcomers seems to have led to local variations in this ware in different spatial and temporal contexts (Rothman, Kozbe 1997).

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Anatolian Studies
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