Elam

Proto-Elamite, c. 3200 - 2700 BC


Proto-Elamite script in Susa

The Proto-Elamite city of Susa was founded around 4000 BC in the watershed of the river Karun. It is considered to be the site of Proto-Elamite cultural formation. During its early history, it fluctuated between submission to Mesopotamian and Elamite power. The earliest levels (22-17 in the excavations conducted by Le Brun, 1978) exhibit pottery that has no equivalent in Mesopotamia, but for the succeeding period, the excavated material allows identification with the culture of Sumer of the Uruk period. Proto-Elamite influence from the Mesopotamia in Susa becomes visible from about 3200 BC, and texts in the still undeciphered Proto-Elamite writing system continue to be present until about 2700 BC. The Proto-Elamite period ends with the establishment of the Awan dynasty. The earliest known historical figure connected with Elam is the king Enmebaragesi of Kish (c. 2650 BC?), who subdued it, according to the Sumerian king list.

Susa III period - Proto-Elamite

Susa III (3100–2700 BCE) is also known as the 'Proto-Elamite' period. At this time, Banesh period pottery is predominant. This is also when the Proto-Elamite tablets first appear in the record. Subsequently, Susa became the centre of Elam civilization.

Ambiguous reference to Elam appear also in this period in Sumerian records. Susa enters history during the Early Dynastic period of Sumer. A battle between Kish and Susa is recorded in 2700 BCE

  • Proto-Elamite, c. 3200 - 2700 BC > Indus Valley Civilisation, c. 2600 - 1800 BC

 

Elam, c. 2700 BC


Elam


The current Chogha Zanbil ziggurat site.


An artistic imagination of Tchogha Zanbil

Elam is one of the first civilizations on record based in the far west and south-west of what is modern-day Iran (in the Ilam Province and the lowlands of Khuzestan). It lasted from around 2700 BC to 539 BC, coming after what is known as the Proto-Elamite period, which began around 3200 BC when Susa, the later capital of the Elamites began to receive influence from the cultures of the Iranian plateau to the east.

Ancient Elam lay to the east of Sumer and Akkad (modern-day Iraq). In the Old Elamite period, it consisted of kingdoms on the Iranian plateau, centered in Anshan, and from the mid-2nd millennium BC, it centered in Susa in the Khuzestan lowlands. Its culture played a crucial role in the Persian Empire, especially during the Achaemenid dynasty that succeeded it, when the Elamite language remained in official use. The Elamite period is considered a starting point for the history of Iran (although there were older civilizations in Iranian plateau like Mani civilization in Azarbaijan and Shar-e sookhteh in Zabol and other indigenous civilizations who lived in Iranian plateau but weren't as established as Elamites).

The Elamite language was not related to any Iranian languages, but may be part of a larger group known as Elamo-Dravidian.

The Elamites called their country Haltamti (in later Elamite, Atamti), which the neighboring Akkadians rendered as Elam. Additionally, the Haltamti are known as Elam in the Hebrew Old Testament, where they are called the offspring of Elam, eldest son of Shem (see Elam (Hebrew Bible)).

The high country of Elam was increasingly identified by its low-lying later capital, Susa. Geographers after Ptolemy called it Susiana. The Elamite civilization was primarily centered in the province of what is modern-day Khuzestan, however it did extended into the later province of Fars in prehistoric times. In fact, the modern provincial name Khuzestan is derived from the Old Persian root Hujiya, meaning "Elam".

Knowledge of Elamite history remains largely fragmentary, reconstruction being based on mainly Mesopotamian sources. The city of Susa was founded around 4000 BC, and during its early history, fluctuated between submission to Mesopotamian and Elamite power. The earliest levels (22-17 in the excavations conducted by Le Brun, 1978) exhibit pottery that has no equivalent in Mesopotamia, but for the succeeding period, the excavated material allows identification with the culture of Sumer of the Uruk period.

Proto-Elamite influence from the Persian plateau in Susa becomes visible from about 3200 BC, and texts in the still undeciphered Proto-Elamite script continue to be present until about 2700 BC. The Proto-Elamite period ends with the establishment of the Awan dynasty. The earliest known historical figure connected with Elam is the king Enmebaragesi of Kish (c. 2650 BC?), who subdued it, according to the Sumerian king list. However, real Elamite history can only be traced from records dating to beginning of the Akkadian Empire in around 2300 BC onwards.

Elamite civilization grew up east of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, in the watershed of the river Karun. In modern terms, Elam included more than Khuzestan; it was a combination of the lowlands and the immediate highland areas to the north and east. Some Elamite sites, however, are found well outside this area, spread out on the Iranian plateau; examples of Elamite remains farther north and east in Iran are Sialk in Isfahan Province and Jiroft in Kerman Province. Elamite strength was based on an ability to hold these various areas together under a coordinated government that permitted the maximum interchange of the natural resources unique to each region. Traditionally, this was done through a federated governmental structure.

Old Elamite period: c. 2700 BC ­ 1600 BC (earliest documents until the Eparti dynasty)

The Old Elamite period began around 2700 BC. Historical records mention the conquest of Elam by Enmebaragesi of Kish. Three dynasties ruled during this period. We know of twelve kings of each of the first two dynasties, those of Avan (c. 2400­2100 BC) and Simash (c. 2100­1970 BC), from a list from Susa dating to the Old Babylonian period. Two Elamite dynasties said to have exercised brief control over Sumer in very early times include Avan and Hamazi, and likewise, several of the stronger Sumerian rulers, such as Eannatum of Lagash and Lugal-anne-mundu of Adab, are recorded as temporarily dominating Elam.

The Avan dynasty was partly contemporary with that of Sargon of Akkad, who not only subjected Elam, but attempted to make Akkadian the official language there. However, with the collapse of Akkad under Sargon's great-grandson, Shar-kali-sharri, Elam declared independence and threw off the Akkadian language.

The last Avan king, Kutik-Inshushinnak was roughly a contemporary of Ur-Nammu. From this time, Mesopotamian sources concerning Elam become more frequent, since the Mesopotamians had developed an interest in resources (such as wood, stone and metal) from the Iranian plateau, and military expeditions to the area became more common. Kutik-Inshushinnak conquered Susa and Anshan, and seems to have achieved some sort of political unity. A few years later, Shulgi of Ur retook the city of Susa and the surrounding region.

During the first part of the rule of the Simashki dynasty, Elam was under intermittent attack from Mesopotamians and Gutians, alternating with periods of peace and diplomatic approaches. Shu-Sin of Ur, for example, gave one of his daughters in marriage to a prince of Anshan. But the power of the Sumerians was waning; Ibbi-Sin in the 21st century did not manage to penetrate far into Elam, and in 2004 BC, the Elamites, allied with the people of Susa and led by king Kindattu, the sixth king of Simashk, managed to sack Ur and lead Ibbi-Sin into captivity -- thus ending the third dynasty of Ur.

However, the kings of Isin, successor state to Ur, did manage to drive the Elamites out of Ur, rebuild the city, and to return the statue of Nanna that the Elamites had plundered.The succeeding dynasty, the Elam (c. 1970­1770 BC), also called "of the sukkalmahs" because of the title borne by its members, was contemporary with the Old Babylonian period in Mesopotamia.

This period is confusing and difficult to reconstruct. It was apparently founded by Eparti I. During this time, Susa was under Elamite control, but Mesopotamian states such as Larsa continually tried to retake the city. Sirukdukh, the third ruler of this dynasty, entered various military coalitions to contain the rising power of Babylon. Kudur-mabug, apparently king of another Elamite state to the north of Susa, managed to install his son, Warad-Sin, on the throne of Larsa, and Warad-Sin's brother, Rim-Sin, succeeded him and conquered much of Mesopotamia for Larsa before being overthrown by Hammurabi of Babylon.

The first and most notable Babylonian dynasty ruler was Siwe-Palar-Khuppak, who for some time was the most powerful person in the area, respectfully addressed as "Father" by Mesopotamian kings such as Zimri-Lim of Mari, and even Hammurabi. But Elamite influence in Mesopotamia did not last, and after a few years, Hammurabi established Babylonian dominance in Mesopotamia. Little is known about the latter part of this dynasty, since sources become again more sparse with the Kassite rule of Babylon.

 

Susiana

In the Sumerian period, Susa was the capital of a state called Susiana (Šušan), which occupied approximately the same territory of modern Khūzestān Province centered on the Karun River. Control of Susiana shifted between Elam, Sumer, and Akkad. Susiana is sometimes mistaken as synonymous with Elam but, according to F. Vallat, it was a distinct cultural and political entity.

In Elamite, the name of the city was written variously Ŝuŝan, Ŝuŝun, etc. The origin of the word Susa is from the local city deity Inshushinak.


Bull-man protecting a palmtree, Decorative brick panel from the outer wall of a temple to Inshushinak at Susa (12th century BC)

The main goddess of the city was Nanaya, who had a significant temple in Susa.


Nanaya, seated on a throne, is being presented the daughter of the king, Ḫunnubat-Nanaya. (Kassite period)

Nanaya (NA.NA.A; also transcribed as "Nanâ", "Nanãy", "Nanaja", "Nanãja", or '"Nanãya"; in Greek: Ναναια or Νανα; Aramaic: ננױננאױ) is the canonical name for a goddess worshipped by the Sumerians and Akkadians, a deity who personified voluptuousness and sexuality, and warfare. Her cult was large and was spread as far as Egypt, Syria, and Iran.


Drawing of Enlil and Ninlil taken from a mural decoration of Susa. Lord Enlil (with hooves and horns of the Bull God) and the Lady Ninlil.

  • Inshushinak = Iškur (son of Enlil)
  • Nanaya = Ninlil

 

Origin of the name Khuzestan

Although Herodotus and Xenophon referred to the entire region as Susiana, the name Khuzestan is what has been referred to the southwestern most province of Persia (Iran) from antiquity.

According to Jules Oppert, the word Ūvja, was pronounced as Xuz or Khuz in the Elamite language. The word Ūvja appears abundantly in many texts and on Achaemenid inscriptions at Naqsh-e Rustam, and on Darius's epigraphs at Persepolis and Susa among others Ūvja, or its Greek counterpart Uxi, were names used to refer to the land or the peoples inhabiting the land of Khuzestan.

Furthermore, Ibn Nadeem, in his book al-Fihrist ("الفهرست"), mentions that all the Median and Persian lands of antiquity spoke one language. In his book, which is the most credible account of spoken languages of Iran during the early Islamic era, he quotes the great scholar Abdullah Ibn al-Muqaffa:

"The Iranian languages are Fahlavi, Dari, Khuzi, Persian, and Suryani."

He then adds that Khuzi is the unofficial language of the royalty and comes from Khuzestan.

In Majma-ul-Tawarikh wa al-Qesas ("The Collection of histories and Tales") written in 1126CE, Khuzestan appears with such names as Hajuestan, Hobujestan, and Ajar, which seem to be derived from Hobujestan and Hujestan in Pahlavi language. According to Sir Henry Rawlinson, in Pahlavi, Ūvja is pronounced Hobuj and therefore both the names Ahvaz and Khuzestan derive their names from here.

The Old Persian word Hūjiya "Elam" appears abundantly in many texts and on Achaemenid inscriptions at Naqsh-e Rustam, and on Darius's epigraphs at Persepolis and Susa among others Hūjiya, or its Greek counterpart Uxi, were names used to refer to the land or the peoples inhabiting Susiana. In Middle Persian, Hūjiya "Elam, Susiana Province" became Huź "Susiana", and the modern form of this word is Xuz. As with istan, the common Persian ending -stan "land, region" was added at some point. The Old Persian: Grammar, Texts, Lexicon by Roland G. Kent of the American Oriental Society, lists the following chains of derivation:

Ūvja → Awaz → Xuz
Ūvja → Ux → Xuz
Ūvja → Xuz → Hobuj
Ūvja → Hobuj → Xuz → Hoz
Ūvja → Hobuj → Xuz → Hoz → Ahvaz

Whereas in some Iranian dialects such as Luri and Bakhtiari (also based in and around Khuzestan), the sound "h" is sometimes used for pronouncing Kh, the words oo, hoo and Khuz have in the process of time been added to the suffix -estan, and the word oojestan has gradually changed to Hujestan, forming the word Khuzestan. Such conversions derive from the fact that in ancient Persian dialects and in Pahlavi language, the sound "oo" was changeable to "hoo" as in such words like Oormazd --> Hoormazd or Ooshmand --> Hooshmand. And Hoordad has also been pronounced Khordad and Khoortat.

Most Arabs such as the Bani Kaab tribe, came from the west and southwest of the Tigris and Euphrates outside of Khuzestan, beginning in the 15-16th centuries. During the succeeding centuries many more Arab tribes moved from southern Iraq to Khuzestan; as a result, Khuzestan gained the second name Arabistan, and became extensively Arabized.

In 1441, Muhammad ibn Falah, founder and leader of the Msha'sha'iya, initiated a wave of attacks on Khuzestan, and the cities of Hoveizeh, Khorramshahr, Ahvaz, and Susa started seeing large increases in Arab populations. The term Arabistan thus came into use to refer to the Arab populated areas of this region. At this time, many texts started using both Khuzestan and Arabistan as the region's name.

 

Elam - Mannaeans > Armenians

Proto-Indo-European language


Elam - Mannaeans

Mannaeans (country name usually Mannea; Akkadian: Mannai, possibly Biblical Minni, מנּי) were an ancient people who lived in the territory of present-day northwestern Iran south of lake Urmia, around the 10th to 7th centuries BC. At that time they were neighbors of the empires of Assyria and Urartu, as well as other small buffer states between the two, such as Musasir and Zikirta.

In the Bible (Jeremiah 51:27) the Mannaeans are called Minni. In the Jewish Encyclopedia (1906), Minni is identified with Armenia, but it could refer to one of the provinces in ancient Armenia; Minni, Ararat and Ashkenaz. According to examinations of the place and personal names found in Assyrian and Urartian texts, the Mannaeans, or at least their rulers, spoke Hurrian language.

According to the Archaeological Institute of America, 1964:

The Mannaeans, a little known people related linguistically to the Urartians and the Hurrians of northern Mesopotamia, were settled on the southeastern shore of Lake Urmia and southward into the mountain area of Urmia.

The Mannaean kingdom began to flourish around 850 BC. The Mannaeans were mainly a settled people, practicing irrigation and breeding cattle and horses. The capital was another fortified city, Izirtu (Zirta).

By the 820s BC they had expanded to become the first large state to occupy this region since the Gutians, later followed by the unrelated Iranian peoples, the Medes and the Persians. By this time they had a prominent aristocracy as a ruling class, which somewhat limited the power of the king.

Beginning around 800 BC, the region became contested ground between Urartu, who built several forts on the territory of Mannae, and Assyria. During the open conflict between the two, c. 750–730 BC, Mannae seized the opportunity to enlarge its holdings. The Mannaean kingdom reached the pinnacle of its power during the reign of Iranzu (c. 725–720 BC).

In 716 BC, king Sargon II of Assyria moved against Mannae, where the ruler Aza, son of Iranzu, had been deposed by Ullusunu with the help of the Urartians. Sargon took Izirtu, and stationed troops in Parsua. Parsua was distinct from Parsumash located further southeast in what is today known as Fars province in Iran. The Assyrians thereafter used the area to breed, train and trade horses.

According to one Assyrian inscription, the Cimmerians (Gimirru) originally went forth from their homeland of Gamir or Uishdish on the shores of the Black Sea in "the midst of Mannai" around this time. The Cimmerians first appear in the annals in the year 714 BC, when they apparently helped the Assyrians to defeat Urartu. Urartu chose to submit to the Assyrians, and together the two defeated the Cimmerians and thus kept them out of the Fertile Crescent. At any rate, the Cimmerians had again rebelled against Sargon by 705, and he was killed whilst driving them out. By 679 they had instead migrated to the east and west of Mannae.

The Mannaeans are recorded as rebelling against Esarhaddon of Assyria in 676 BC, when they attempted to interrupt the horse trade between Assyria and its colony of Parsuash.

The king Ahsheri, who ruled until the 650s BC, continued to enlarge the territory of Mannae, although paying tribute to Assyria. However, Mannae suffered a crushing defeat at the hands of the Assyrians around 660 BC, and subsequently an internal revolt broke out, continuing until Ahsheri's death. Also in the 7th century BC, Mannae was defeated by the advancing Scythians, who had already raided Urartu and been repelled by the Assyrians. This defeat contributed to the further break-up of the Mannaean kingdom.

King Ahsheri's successor, Ualli, as an ally of Assyria, took the side of the Assyrians against the Iranian Medes (Madai), who were at this point still based to the east along the southwest shore of the Caspian Sea and revolting against Assyrian domination. The Medes and Persians were subjugated by Assyria. However, the Neo-Assyrian Empire, which had dominated the region for three hundred years, began to unravel, consumed by civil war after the death of Ashurbanipal in 627 BC. The upheavals in Assyria allowed the Medes to free themselves from Assyrian vassalage and make themselves the major power in ancient Iran at the expense of the Persians, Mannaeans and the remnants of the indigenous Elamites whose kingdom had been destroyed by the Assyrians. At the battle of Qablin in ca. 616 BC the Assyrian and Mannaean forces were defeated by Nabopolassar's troops. This defeat laid open the frontiers of the Land of the Manneans which fell under the control of Media between 615 BC and 611 BC.

 

Minni - D'lmno - Delminium

  • D'l-mno - Del-minium

 

Elamiti

Elám neve az 1Mózes 10:12-ben fordul elő először, ahol Shem első fiaként van megemlítve. Ezt a leírást a Jásár könyve kiegészíti annyi további információval, hogy felsorolja az elsőszülött Elám fiainak neveit is:

Jásár 7:15 Ezek Shem fiai: Elám, Assúr, Arpaksad, Lúd és Arám, öt fiak; Elám fiai pedig Szuzán, Makul és Harmon.

Jubileumok 8:1 És a huszonkilencedik jubileum idején, annak kezdetén, az első évhétben, Arpaksad feleséget vett maga mellé, akinek neve Raszú’eja volt, Szúzánnak, Elám fiának a lánya, és ő fiút szült neki ennek az évhétnek a harmadik évében, akit Káinam-nak nevezett el.

Az antropológusok mind megegyeznek abban, hogy az elamiták nem tartoznak sem az arab, sem pedig azt az északi sémi típushoz, vagyis a sémi ág egy önálló altípusát képviselik. Az elérhető égetett agyagra festett, fényezettel bevonatú képek világos/fehérbőrű embereknek ábrázolják az elamitákat, akiket a brachycephal koponyaforma (kerek fejforma) jellemez. Habár az elamita ábrákon esetenként láthatók barnább és sötétebb bőrű emberek is, magukat az elamitákat határozottan a kaukázusi vonások (a sémita jegyek, a világos bőr és hajszín, valamint a kék szemszín) jellemezték. Mint minden korai birodalomban, így Elámban is jelen voltak más etnikumok, akár rabszolgákként, akár szabad polgárokként, kereskedőkként, stb. A kutatók szerint nem csak a náluk sötétebb bőrű araboktól tűnnek el, de a sémi népek más ágazataitól is, ami azt jelenti, hogy, egy különálló alrasszt képeznek és ekként is vannak nyilvántartva.

Az elamita birodalom összeomlása után, Círusz, Perzsia királya Szuzán városát tette meg az Elám nevet viselő tartományának fővárosául. A megtört elamiták egy ideig a médek és perzsák vazallusaiként szolgáltak, majd elhagyva egykori földjüket hosszú vándorlásba kezdtek. Ekkor már rég iráni nyelvet beszéltek, a korai sajátos elamita nyelv kihalt. Sokan vannak, akit tévesen azt vélik, hogy az elamiták elvegyültek, vagy felolvadtak a perzsa birodalom sokszínű népességben, s így ma már nem is léteznek tiszta elamiták. Egy ehhez hasonló másik tévhit szerint Elám próféciai értelemben ma Iránt jelenti. Az ismert elamita törzsi nevek: az haltamti az Anzan, Uxii, Armardi, Mardi, Khapirt, Aipir, Kisszi, a Kosszaei, vagy Kasszi, valamint a Khúz és Huzha törzsek. A népes kasszita törzset az asszírok "kushú"-nak nevezték. ennek egy későbbi formája a "kasúb". Tartsuk figyelemben, hogy a nevek formái némileg módosultak az idők folyamán. A kashúbokat szőkékként jellemezték, és Elám egy területét "rashi"-ként ismerték, aminek jelentése ugyancsak "szőke". E népnév különösen fontos, ugyanis a kasúb, egy ma is ismert európai népelem neve. Ezeknek a törzseknek a vándorlásai viszonylag jól követhetőek, nevük ugyanis gyakran előfordul az általuk bejárt útvonalakon.

A jelek szerint az elamiták legalább két hullámban és nagy időeltéréssel hagyták el őshazájukat. Kisebb részük már a nagyon korai időkben eltávozott Elám környékéről, amely Kis-Ázsián és Thrákián áthaladva érte el az Adriai-tenger partjait, ahol megtelepedtek. A hátramaradt messze nagyobb elem a jáfetita médekkel - amely nép a méd-perzsa birodalom egy fő eleme volt - egyidőben hagyták el az egykori Perzsa Birodalom területeit a Krisztust megelőző évszázadokban. Ez az ágazat a Fekete-tenger mentén a Délorosz sztyeppékre kötözött át. Itt az elamiták és a  médek évszázadokon át megőrizték a viszonylag szoros kapcsolatot és egymás szomszédságában éltek az említett területen. A történelmi forrásokból tudjuk, hogy az ezen a területen élő népet szarmatáknak nevezték. A szarmaták később egészen a mai Balti-tengerig nyomultak, amit ekkoriban utánuk neveztek el Szarmata-tengernek. Mindkét útvonal viszonylag jól követhető a történelmi forrásokból.

A nyugati szlávok terjeszkedése az 5. és 6. századokban vette kezdetét Középkelet-Európában. Azok a szláv törzsek, amelyek a cseh nép ősei voltak pl. a kései VI. században érkeztek meg Bohémiába, ahol számos hűbérbirtokot hoztak létre. A szláv törzsek egyesítésének első kísérlete pedig Samo uralma alatt történt meg 623 és 658 között. Samo birodalma Sziléziától a mai Szlovéniáig terjedt. Maga Samo frank származású volt, akit az avarellenes bátor harcai tettei miatt tettek meg a szlávok királyukká, aki még a kor nagyhatalmával és saját népével szemben, a frankok ellen is képes volt megvédeni birodalmát. A következő egyesítési kísérlet a Nagymorva Birodalom formációját eredményezte, amit a csehek, morvák és a szlovákok ősei hoztak létre a 9. század derekán. E birodalom valós kiterjedése egy vitás kérdés, az viszont tény, hogy a magyarok honfoglalása vetett véget ennek a birodalmi kísérletnek.

Az egykori Elámból ismert Anzan/Antes törzsek alkották a szarmaták legnépesebb csoportját. Sulimirski kihangsúlyozza, hogy "a szarmaták közeli kapcsolatban álltak a médekkel, pártusokkal és irániakkal." A lengyel nép a délorosz pusztákról elvándorolt Elamiták kisebb törzsekre szakadt elemeiből forrt össze, akik szarmatákként érkeztek e területekre. Sulimirski ezt írja: 

“Lengyelországban hosszú időn át megőrizték az ősi szarmata hagyományokat. A lengyel nemesség köreiben bevett meggyőződés volt az, hogy ők a szarmatáktól származnak." ... “Ennek több bizonyítéka látható a korai lengyel pénzérméken és heraldikában." (Sulimirski 1970 :166)

A nyugati szlávok azon törzsei, amelyből a cseh nép alakult ki a kései VI. században érkeztek Bohémiába ahol számos hűbérbirtokot hoztak létre. A X. században a cseh uralkodó osztály a Szent Római Birodalom.  A velük rokon szlovákok 907-től magyar uralom alá kerültek, ahogy a déli szlovének, horvátok, dalmátok és keleten a ruszinok is. A csehek és szlovákok a fenevad következő fejének, a Habsburg Monarchiának az uralma alatt álltak 1526-1804 között, majd az Oszták Magyar birodalom alatt 1867-1918 között.

Egy lengyel eredetmonda szerint a szláv nép három vándorútra indult fiútestvértől származik, név szerint Lechtől, Czechtől és Rusztól. Egy bizonyos helyhez megérkezve Lech megpillantott egy magas fa tetején elhelyezkedő sasfészket, és mivel ezt egy jó égi jelnek vélte elhatározta, hogy azon a helyen telepszik meg. Új lakhelyét Gniezno-nak (sasfészeknek) nevezett el. Czech e helyről déli irányba költözött, Rus pedig keletebbre, a későbbi rutének országába. A legenda szerint tőlük származik a nyugati szlávok három eleme. A három fiú mondájának több változata is létezik. Érdekes módon a mai Irán területén élő népek között is ismert a három fiú legendája, ami azt jelenti, hogy a modern szláv mítosz sokkal korábbi keletű, mint azt sokan gondolják. De ami igazán érdekessé teszi ezt az eredetmondát, az az, hogy a Jásár könyve szerint Elámnak három fia volt, Szuzán, Mákul és Harmon (Js. 7:15)!

Lényeges némi kitérőt tenni magának a szláv megnevezésnek az eredetére, ami egy kultúrkört és egy nyelvcsaládot is jelöl egyben. Az i.e. 5. és az i.sz. 5. közötti időkben a Mezopotámiát elhagyó különböző népek nagy törzsszövetségekben, föderációkban éltek, amelyek egy adott kulturális közeget alkottak. A nyelvcsaládok is ezek mentén fejlődtek ki. A szövetségekbe tömörült nemzetek általában rokon népek voltak, de ez nem minden esetben volt így, s egy-egy adott szövetségi rendszer, vagy kultúrkör esetenként több etnikumból tevődött ki. A szkíta, a hun és pártus nevek alatt sem feltétlenül csak az adott birodalmat létrehozó népet értjük, hanem az általuk dominált szövetségi rendszer népeit is. Az ilyen struktúrákat gyakran több etnikum, esetenként eltérő rasszok alkották. Az elsősorban Izrael elveszett törzsei által dominált pártus birodalomban az izraeliták mellett számos egyéb népelem, így elamiták is éltek (vö. Ap.Csel. 2:9). Hasonlóan, a hun törzsszövetségen belül a különböző jáfetita népek mellett jelen voltak az Assurtól és Arpaksádtól származó sémi germán/gót népelemek, valamint az ugyancsak sémi eredetű elamita szarmaták is. Az ugyan még vitatott, hogy a szarmaták döntő elemeit konkrétabban a sémi elamiták vagy pedig a jáfetita médek tették e ki.  Az tény, hogy ez a két nép szoros szövetségben állt egymással, hiszen közvetlen szomszédok voltak már az iráni óhazában is. A szarmatákat leszámítva, a szlávok esetében inkább egy kultúrkörről beszélünk, mintsem egy katonai szövetségrendszerről. Az elamiták és médek Volga menti új életterében a legközelebbi szomszédjaik Mések és Tubál népei [a nagyoroszok ősei, akik a médek jáfetita testvérnépei] voltak, valamivel északabbra pedig Rós helyezkedett el. E népek együttesen alkották meg a szláv kultúrkört és alakították ki az indoeurópai nyelvcsalád szláv ágazatát. E kultúrkör így elsősorban két rasszból tevődik ki: a sémi elamitákból, akiktől a nyugati szlávok származnak, valamint Jáfet kaukazoid vonásokat viselő nemzetségeiből Mések, Tubál és Madai népeiből. Ez utóbbiakat Rós népével kiegészítve ma keleti szlávokként ismerünk. A szláv kultúra elamita komponensét a lengyelek, csehek, szlovákok, szlovének, horvátok, szerbek és bolgárok alkotják, a jáfetita komponenst pedig a ‘nagyoroszok’ [Mések és Tubál] a ‘kisoroszok’ [Madai, vagyis a médek] és végül külön komponensként a fehéroroszok [Rós, az Ábrahámtól és Keturától származó mittani nép leszármazottai].

Elamiti

Elam
Name: “eternity”
Children: Shushan, Machul and Harmon.
Groups: Elamites (2700-539 BC) – Founders of Sumaria; moved to Iran. Persians – Iran.
Subgroups: Pol (moved northwest to become Poland); Daylamites Dalmati (how the nations began in the Balkans to become Dalmacia/Croatia); Serbi moved to the Balkans to become Serbia.

 

Elam

   

Šemu - praocu svih sinova Eberovih i starijem bratu Jafetovu - rodili se sinovi. Šemovi su sinovi: Elam, Ašur, Arpakšad, Lud i Aram.

 

Herodot

Herodot je prije 2500 godina u svojoj povijesti napisao, da prostore današnje sjeverne Hrvatske nastanjuje narod koji tvrde da su rodjaci onih Mada koji žive na prostorima Elama zapadnog dijela današnjeg Irana: "Zapadno od Dunava živi narod Sikina (grad Sisak podno Zagreb gorja), oni se oblače u hlače i košulje poput Meda i Skita (iz grada Susa podno Zagros gorja). Granice ove zemlje se protežu skoro do Veneta na (Jadranskom) moru. Sikini tvrde da su doselili iz Medie, ali kako to može biti, to ja ne mogu shvatiti ali u tijeku povijesti sve je moguće".

  • Grad Susa = Grad Sisak
  • Zagros gorje = Zagreb gorje - Zagorje
  • Tepe Sarab = Tribe of Serb

 

Daylamites - Dalmatae


Daylami

Today hotspots of haplogroups I2a & R1a in Asia minor and Asia are related to Zazas (Dimilis/Daylami) in Asia minor... and in area called Daylami south of Caspian lake (area north of Teheran)..

Linguistic studies shows that the Zazas may have immigrated to their modern-day homeland from the southern shores of the Caspian Sea. Some Zazas use the word Dimli (Daylami) to describe their ethnic identity. The word Dimli (Daylami) also describes a region of Gilan Province in today’s Iran. Some linguists connect the word Dimli with the Daylamites in the Alborz Mountains near the shores of Caspian Sea in Iran and believe that the Zaza have migrated from Daylam towards the west. Today, Iranian languages are still spoken in southern regions of Caspian Sea (also called the Caspian languages), including Sangsarī, Māzandarānī, Tātī (Herzendī), Semnānī, Tāleshī, and they are grammatically and lexically very close to Zazaki; this supports the argument that Zazas immigrated to eastern Anatolia from southern regions of Caspian Sea. Zazas also live in a region close to the Kurds, who are also another Iranic ethnic group. But, historic sources such as the Zoroastrian holy book, Bundahishn, places the Dilaman (Dimila/Zaza) homeland in the headwaters of the Tigris, as it is today. This points to that the Dimila/Zaza migrated to the Caspian sea and not the other way around.

I think tribal name Dalmatae in Balkan (where is highest frequency of haplogrpoup I2a2) and word Daylamites (islands of I in north Iran and Asia minor) have same root, denote same people...

   
Coat of arms of Dalmatia

Shabaki

The Zazaki language shows similarities with (Hewrami or Gorani), Shabaki and Bajelani. Gorani, Bajelani, and Shabaki languages are spoken around Iran-Iraq border; however, it is believed that they are also immigrated from Northern Iran to their present homelands. These languages are sometimes put together in the Zaza-Gorani language group.

Gorani is common tribal name amongst Slavic people - it means simply people living in hills....e.g. there is today a ethnic group Gorani in Kosovo..they are of Slavic origin but has accepted islam.

 

Lion goddess

Lioness-woman - Elam


Lioness-woman sculpture - Elamite figure c. 3000 BC
Most expensive sculpture $ 67.500 000

 

Inanna - Lion goddess

 
Goddess Inanna stands on a lion.

 
Inanna

Inanna is an ancient Mesopotamian goddess associated with love, beauty, sex, desire, fertility, war, justice, and political power. She was originally worshipped in Sumer and was later worshipped by the Akkadians, Babylonians, and Assyrians under the name Ishtar. She was known as the "Queen of Heaven" and was the patron goddess of the Eanna temple at the city of Uruk, which was her main cult center. She was associated with the planet Venus and her most prominent symbols included the lion and the eight-pointed star. Her husband was the god Dumuzid (later known as Tammuz) and her sukkal, or personal attendant, was the goddess Ninshubur (who later became the male deity Papsukkal).

The cult of Inanna-Ishtar also heavily influenced the cult of the Phoenician goddess Astarte. The Phoenicians introduced Astarte to the Greek islands of Cyprus and Cythera, where she either gave rise to or heavily influenced the Greek goddess Aphrodite. Aphrodite took on Inanna-Ishtar's associations with sexuality and procreation. Furthermore, she was known as Ourania (Οὐρανία), which means "heavenly", a title corresponding to Inanna's role as the Queen of Heaven.

 

Bastet

Bastet or Bast "She of the Ointment Jar", was a goddess of ancient Egyptian religion, worshiped as early as the Second Dynasty (2890 BCE). As Bast, she was the goddess of warfare in Lower Egypt, the Nile Delta.

 
Bastet

The uniting Egyptian cultures had deities that shared similar roles, and usually the same imagery. In Upper Egypt, Sekhmet was the parallel warrior lioness deity. Often similar deities merged into one with the unification, but this did not occur with those deities having particularly strong roots in their cultures.

Bast first appears in the third millennium BC, where she is depicted as either a fierce lioness or a woman with the head of a lioness.

The description offered by Herodotus and several Egyptian texts suggest that water surrounded the temple on three (out of four) sides, forming a type of lake known as isheru, not too dissimilar from that surrounding the temple of the mother goddess Mut in Karnak at Thebes. These lakes were typical of temples devoted to a number of lioness goddesses who are said to represent one original goddess, daughter of the Sun-God Ra / Eye of Ra: Bast, Mut, Tefnut, Hathor, and Sakhmet. Each of them had to be appeased by a specific set of rituals. One myth relates that a lioness, fiery and wrathful, was once cooled down by the water of the lake, transformed into a gentle cat, and settled in the temple.

Wadjet-Bast

Wadjet later became identified with the war goddess of Lower Egypt, Bast, who acted as another figure symbolic of the nation, consequently becoming Wadjet-Bast. In this role, since Bast was a lioness, Wadjet-Bast was often depicted with a lioness head.


Wadjet-Bast

 

Sakhmet

Sekhmet is a warrior goddess as well as goddess of healing. She is depicted as a lioness, the fiercest hunter known to the Egyptians. It was said that her breath formed the desert. She was seen as the protector of the pharaohs and led them in warfare.


Sekhmet

Sekhmet is also a solar deity, sometimes called the daughter of Ra and often associated with the goddesses Hathor and Bastet. She bears the Uraeus, which associates her with Wadjet and royalty, and the solar disk.

Sekhmet's name comes from the Ancient Egyptian word sekhem, which means "power or might". Sekhmet's name is thus translated as "the (one who is) powerful or mighty". She also was given titles such as the "(One) Before Whom Evil Trembles", "Mistress of Dread", "Lady of Slaughter" and "She Who Mauls".

She was envisioned as a fierce lioness, and in art, was depicted as such, or as a woman with the head of a lioness, who was dressed in red, the color of blood. Sometimes the dress she wears exhibits a rosetta pattern over each breast, an ancient leonine motif, which can be traced to observation of the shoulder-knot hairs on lions.

To pacify Sekhmet, festivals were celebrated at the end of battle, so that the destruction would come to an end. During an annual festival held at the beginning of the year, a festival of intoxication, the Egyptians danced and played music to soothe the wildness of the goddess and drank great quantities of wine ritually to imitate the extreme drunkenness that stopped the wrath of the goddess-when she almost destroyed humanity. This may relate to averting excessive flooding during the inundation at the beginning of each year as well, when the Nile ran blood-red with the silt from up-stream and Sekhmet had to swallow the overflow to save humankind.

In a myth about the end of Ra's rule on the earth, Ra sends Hathor as Sekhmet to destroy mortals who conspired against him. In the myth, Sekhmet's blood-lust was not quelled at the end of battle and led to her destroying almost all of humanity, so Ra poured out beer dyed with red ochre or hematite so that it resembled blood. Mistaking the beer for blood, she became so drunk that she gave up the slaughter and returned peacefully to Ra.

 

Repyt

Repyt was an ancient Egyptian goddess. She was normally portrayed as a lioness goddess of Egypt.


Repyt

 

Shesmetet

Shesmetet is an ancient Egyptian goddess. She was mentioned in the Pyramid Texts and was usually referred to as the deceased's mother. She was depicted as a lion or a woman with a lion's head, and thus was sometimes considered a form of Sekhmet or Bastet, but one of her epithets – "Lady of Punt" – differentiates her from them and may refer to a possible African origin. Her name comes from shesmet, a sash decorated with beads, which appears on the depictions of Old Kingdom rulers and the god Sopdu.


Shesmetet

 

Menhit

Menhit was originally a Nubian war goddess in Egyptian mythology. Her name depicts a warrior status, as it means (she who) massacres.

Due to the aggressive attributes possessed by and hunting methods used by lionesses, most things connected to warfare in Egypt were depicted as leonine, and Menhit was no exception, being depicted as a lioness-goddess.


Menhit

 

Durga

The Hindu goddess Durga may also have been influenced by Inanna. Like Inanna, Durga was envisioned as a warrior goddess with a fierce temper who slew demons. Both goddesses were portrayed riding on the backs of lions and both were associated with the destruction of the wicked. Like Inanna, Durga was also associated with sexuality.

Durga has been a warrior goddess, and she is depicted to express her martial skills. Her iconography typically resonates with these attributes, where she rides a lion or a tiger, has between eight and eighteen hands, each holding a weapon to destroy and create. She is often shown in the midst of her war with Mahishasura, the buffalo demon at the time she victoriously kills the demonic force. Her icon shows her in action, yet her face is calm and serene.


Statue from the Aihole temple of the Hindu goddess Durga, heavily armed with a lion at her side, slaying the buffalo demon. Durga's warrior aspects and associations with lions may be derived from Inanna.


Rujm el-Hiri, c. 3000 - 2700 BC


Rujm el-Hiri - Gilgal Refaim

Rujm el-Hiri is an ancient megalithic monument consisting of concentric circles of stone with a tumulus at center. It is located in the Israeli-occupied portion of the Golan Heights, some 16 kilometres (9.9 mi) east of the coast of the Sea of Galilee, in the middle of a large plateau covered with hundreds of dolmens.

Made up of more than 42,000 basalt rocks arranged in concentric circles, it has a mound 15 feet (4.6 m) tall at its center. Some circles are complete, others incomplete. The outermost wall is 520 feet (160 m) in diameter and 8 feet (2.4 m) high. The establishment of the site, and other nearby ancient settlements, is dated by archaeologists to the Early Bronze Age II period (3000–2700 BCE).

Since excavations have yielded very few material remains, Israeli archeologists theorize that the site was not a defensive position or a residential quarter but most likely a ritual center, possibly linked to the cult of the dead.

Hebrew name used for the site is Gilgal Refā'īm or Galgal Refā'īm, "Wheel of Spirits" or "Wheel of Ghosts" as Refa'im means "ghosts" or "spirits".

History and purpose

The site was cataloged during an archaeological survey carried out in 1967-1968 by Shmarya Gutman and Claire Epstein. The site is probably the source of the legends about "a remnant of the giants" or Rephaim for Og. The surveyors used Syrian maps, and a Syrian triangulation post was found on top of its cairn.

Structure and description

The site's size and location, on a wide plateau which is also scattered with hundreds of dolmens, means that an aerial perspective is necessary to see the complete layout. The site was made from Basalt rocks, common in the Golan Heights due to the region's history of volcanic activity. It is made from 37,500 - 40,000 tons of partly worked stone stacked up to 2 meters (6.6 ft) high. It was estimated by Freikman that the transportation and building of the massive monument would have required more than 25,000 working days. The site is often referred to as the "Stonehenge of the Levant."

The remains consist of a large circle (slightly oval) of basalt rocks, containing four smaller concentric circles, each getting progressively thinner; some are complete, others incomplete. The walls of the circles are connected by irregularly placed smaller stone walls perpendicular to the circles.

The central tumulus is built from smaller rocks, and is thought to have been constructed after the surrounding walls were constructed. Connecting to it are four main stone walls. The first wall, shaped like a semicircle, is 50m in diameter and 1.5m wide. That wall is connected to a second one, an almost complete circle 90m in diameter. The third wall is a full circle, 110m in diameter and 2.6m wide. The fourth and outermost wall is the largest: 150m in diameter and 3.2m wide.

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Entrance to burial cave

A central tumulus 65 feet (20 m) in diameter and 15 feet (4.6 m) high is surrounded by concentric circles, the outermost of which is 520 feet (160 m) in diameter and 8 feet (2.4 m) high. Two entrances to the site face the northeast (29 meters (95 ft) wide) and southeast (26 meters (85 ft) wide). The northeast entrance leads to an accessway 20 feet (6.1 m) long leading to the center of the circle which seems to point in the general direction of the June solstice sunrise. The axis of the tomb discovered at the site's center is similarly aligned. Mount Hermon is almost due north and Mount Tabor is close to December solstice sunrise. Geometry and astronomy are visually connected by the temple's design.


Rujm el-Hiri viewed from ground level

  • Megalithic Malta, c. 3600 - 3000 BC > Rujm el-Hiri, c. 3000 - 2700 BC

 

The Mysterious Monument as Old as Stonehenge, ‘Rujm el-Hiri’

In a land dotted with ancient dolmens or tombs from a time before the urban centers of civilization had arisen in Mesopotamia and Egypt, stands a monument as old as Stonehenge. According to local legend, it was the “land of ancient giants.” The monument is called Rujm el-Hiri, which means “the stone heap of the wild cat,” or more recently known as Gilgal Refa’im, Hebrew for “Wheel of Giants,” referring to a biblical race of giants.

The stone monument was first discovered by archaeologists when an aerial survey was released after Israel captured the territory from Syria in 1967. The site sits 10 miles (16 kilometers) east of the Sea of Galilee in the western part of the historic Bashan plain of Golan Heights. An archaeological survey was conducted of the area between 1967 and 1968.

It wasn’t until 1989 that full archaeological excavations were carried out, running until 1992. The excavations were conducted by Moshe Kochavi and Yonathan Mizrachi through the Land of Geshur Project of Tel Aviv University’s Institute of Archaeology.

Rujm el-Hiri has been dated to the Early Bronze Age II (3000–2700 B.C.E.) time period and is believed to be one of the oldest and largest structures in the region. The structure is made of thousands of small basalt rocks; if weighed together they would be 37,500 metric tons.

Watch Rujm el Hiri — Prehistoric ”Stonehenge” monument in Golan Heights, by Haaretz.com:

The stone monument has five concentric circles, the largest being 520 feet (158 m) in diameter, with the four smaller circles walls becoming progressively narrower in width. All the walls are connected perpendicularly by 36 randomly spaced smaller walls.

In the center lies the central tumulus, or cairn (tomb), built with smaller stones. At its core is a buried dolmen, or burial monument, which consists of two 5 foot (1.5m) tall stones that support a large horizontal stone. The dolmen lies over a chamber that connects to a 10 foot (3 m) long access corridor.


Robbed tomb at Rujm el Hiri, called the Stonehenge of the Chalcolithic period due to the alignment with the sun and the megalithic structure.

Archaeologists have traditionally dated this site and other ancient settlements nearby to the Early Bronze Age II (3000–2700 B.C.E.) time period. However, a reassessment was made when the site was excavated by Yosef Garfinkel and Michael Freikman of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem in 2007. Then in 2010, Freikman returned and has now suggested the tumulus was built at the same time as the rings and not during the Late Bronze Age (1550–1200 B.C.) as previously thought. The rings have been dated to the Early Bronze Age based on artifacts found at the site.

The tomb would have included jewelery and weapons, but was looted by Tomb robbers.

However, a Chalcolithic pin was found in a passageway, which was possibly dropped by the robbers. Now, with the discovery of the Chalcolithic pin, Freikman theorizes the structure should be dated to an original construction during the Chalcolithic period, and the tumulus was the centerpiece of the ring.

Watch Mysterious Prehistoric Stonehenge in Golan Heights, by ShantiUniverse:

Freikman’s theory is supported by the find of an earlier phase of construction beneath the two later phases that contained the Bronze Age finds. There have also been other Chalcolithic sites discovered in the vicinity of Rujm el-Hiri, which include a similar but smaller stone structure that has been dated to the Chalcolithic period.

So what is it?

There have been a number of explanations as to what this site was used for: A place of worship with ceremonies held during the longest and shortest days of the year, a monumental burial site for a major chieftain or important leader, a place to conduct astronomical observations for calculations related to religious purposes, or an ancient calendar for agricultural purposes.

All these theories are based on their understandings of the artifacts that were discovered and studies of the site. One theory does stand out from the rest; it takes into account the archaeological evidence, the cultural contexts of Chalcolithic practices, and also the surrounding Chalcolithic archaeological sites.

Dr. Rami Arav, co-director of the Bethsaida excavations northeast of the coast of the Sea of Galilee and Professor of Religion and Philosophy at the University of Nebraska, Omaha, wrote his theory in an article entitled Excarnation: Food for Vultures, which was published in the Biblical Archaeology Review.

He proposes the site was for both funeral purposes and for “excarnation,” the process of removing the flesh from bones of the deceased for placement in ossuaries (bone boxes) by the Chalcolithic inhabitants. He describes small clay ossuaries that have been discovered in the hundreds at various archaeological sites that date back to Chalcolithic times.

Chalcolithic burial Cave in Peki’in in the Upper Galilee. The cave is narrow, 17 m long and 7 m wide, with three different levels. It contained many findings, including Ossuaries decorated with human faces. Dated 4,500-3,500 B.C.E.

In the 1st century B.C. and 1st century A.D., Jews in the Jerusalem area allowed the deceased to decay away to their bones for a year in burial caves before the disarticulated bones were placed into ossuaries. For the earlier Chalcolithic people of the Rujm el-Hiri, there is no evidence that indicates how they managed to reduce the bodies to bones before placing them in their ossuaries.

Chalcolithic Ossuaries on display at Eretz Israel Museum, Tel Aviv, Israel.

Arav suggests that various cultures and civilizations had used birds of prey, specifically vultures, to remove the flesh off the bones of the deceased. He bases this on anthropological records on excarnation or “sky burial” practices of many cultures and civilizations.

In his article, he uses the ancient Zoroastrian dakhmas, or “towers of silence,” as an example. In this practice, vultures would be used to eat away the flesh from the bones of the dead that were placed on raised platforms, partly to protect the soil from any pollution from decaying bodies.

Because the concentric walls of Rujm el-Hiri are at progressively lower heights toward the central tumulus, he suggest that this would have allowed the vultures to have a better view of the laid-out bodies from where they sat on the walls. After the vultures finished, the bones would be freed of any flesh, and then could be disarticulated and placed in their ossuaries, which were designed to look like houses, miniature granaries, or silos.

Archaeologists have theorized that ossuaries symbolize the storage places for new life, as granaries contained seeds or grain for new crop production. At least in this area of the ancient Near East, some have suggested that the ancient Chalcolithic people believed in a resurrection.

The ossuaries were seen as ‘magic boxes’ that had the power to resurrect the dead.

Arav also uses references from research that suggests the Chalcolithic people of Levant had originally migrated from the ancient Anatolian region (now southern Turkey). Studies of the material culture have shown striking similarities between the Chalcolithic Levant and that of southern Turkey, with excarnation thought to have been practiced in southern Turkey during the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods.

One example of a “vulture shrine” was found at the famous Neolithic site of Catalhoyuk in southeastern Turkey. The shrine had a mural painted on the wall of vultures swooping over headless corpses, which has been interpreted as a possible excarnation scene.

As all theories go, however, these suggestions are just that — a theory — and will no doubt cause a lot of debates and criticism, but Arav’s theory is intriguing and not that implausible.


Mehrgarh Periods VI, 3000 BC


Female figure from Mehrgarh; c. 3000 BCE

  • Cucuteni-Trypillian culture > Mehrgarh Periods > Indus Valley Civilisation

 

Indus Valley Civilisation, c. 2600 - 1800 BC

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Indus Valley Civilisation

The Indus Valley civilisation (2,600-1,900 BCE) located both in Pakistan and India is often identified as having been Dravidian. Cultural and linguistic similarities have been cited by researchers Henry Heras, Kamil Zvelebil, Asko Parpola and Iravatham Mahadevan as being strong evidence for a proto-Dravidian origin of the ancient Indus Valley civilisation. The discovery in Tamil Nadu of a late Neolithic (early 2nd millennium BCE, i.e. post-dating Harappan decline) stone celt allegedly marked with Indus signs has been considered by some to be significant for the Dravidian identification.


Y-chromosome L


Dravidian people

According to David McAlpin, the Dravidian languages were brought to India by immigration into India from Elam. According to Renfrew and Cavalli-Sforza, proto-Dravidian was brought to India by farmers from the Iranian part of the Fertile Crescent. According to Mikhail Andronov, Dravidian languages were brought to India at the beginning of the third millennium BCE.

Kivisild et al. (1999) note that "a small fraction of the West Eurasian mtDNA lineages found in Indian populations can be ascribed to a relatively recent admixture."[36] at ca. 9,300 ± 3,000 years before present, which coincides with "the arrival to India of cereals domesticated in the Fertile Crescent" and "lends credence to the suggested linguistic connection between the Elamite and Dravidic populations."

According to Gallego Romero et al. (2011), their research on lactose tolerance in India suggests that "the west Eurasian genetic contribution identified by Reich et al. (2009) principally reflects gene flow from Iran and the Middle East." Gallego Romero notes that Indians who are lactose-tolerant show a genetic pattern regarding this tolerance which is "characteristic of the common European mutation." According to Romero, this suggests that "the most common lactose tolerance mutation made a two-way migration out of the Middle East less than 10,000 years ago. While the mutation spread across Europe, another explorer must have brought the mutation eastward to India – likely traveling along the coast of the Persian Gulf where other pockets of the same mutation have been found."

According to Palanichamy et al. (2015), "The presence of mtDNA haplogroups (HV14 and U1a) and Y-chromosome haplogroup (L1) in Dravidian populations indicates the spread of the Dravidian language into India from west Asia."

Asko Parpola, who regards the Harappans to have been Dravidian, notes that Mehrgarh (7000 BCE to c. 2500 BCE), to the west of the Indus River valley, is a precursor of the Indus Valley Civilisation, whose inhabitants migrated into the Indus Valley and became the Indus Valley Civilisation. It is one of the earliest sites with evidence of farming and herding in South Asia.

Dravidian languages

Yuri Knorozov surmised that the symbols represent a logosyllabic script and suggested, based on computer analysis, an underlying agglutinative Dravidian language as the most likely candidate for the underlying language. Knorozov's suggestion was preceded by the work of Henry Heras, who suggested several readings of signs based on a proto-Dravidian assumption.


The Pashupati seal from the Indus Valley Civilization

Linguist Asko Parpola writes that the Indus script and Harappan language are "most likely to have belonged to the Dravidian family". Parpola led a Finnish team in investigating the inscriptions using computer analysis. Based on a proto-Dravidian assumption, they proposed readings of many signs, some agreeing with the suggested readings of Heras and Knorozov (such as equating the "fish" sign with the Dravidian word for fish, "min") but disagreeing on several other readings. A comprehensive description of Parpola's work until 1994 is given in his book Deciphering the Indus Script.


2,700 Year Old Yogi in Samadhi Found in Indus Valley Civilization Archaeological Site

The 2,700 year old skeletal remains of an ancient yogi sitting in samadhi have been found in an Indus valley civilization archeological site located at Balathal, Rajasthan.

     
Tree of Life

Many Indus Valley seals represent pictures of yogis sitting in a lotus position. If we see the skeletal remains of the yogi above, we can note that his fingers are in gyana mudra (with thumb touching index finger), resting on his knees as well.


The Seven Mother Goddess from the Indus Valley Civilization & Seven Goddesses of Birth, surrogate mother of the first men, from the Sumer.

 

Harappa, c. 2600 - 1900 BC

 
Harappa

 

Mohendžo Daro - Kukkutarma, c. 2600 - 1800 BC

Mohendžo Daro (engleski: Moenjodaro) je povijesni grad na donjem toku Inda u današnjem Pakistanu, koji je u razdoblju od 2600. pr. Kr. do 1800. pr. Kr. bio dio indske kulture. U cijelom gradu nisu nađeni tragovi arhitekture svjetovnih niti duhovnih vladara. Odnosno, ništa takvog se nije moglo potvrditi dovoljno utemeljenim indicijama i činjenicama. No upravo je to, misli Michael Jansen, profesor povijesti urbanizma u Aachenu i German University of Technology u Omanu te savjetnik UNESCO-a za svjetsku kulturnu baštinu, senzacionalno u tom gradu: iako su morali biti vrlo bogati, stanovnici su se odrekli monumentalne arhitekture. Nema palača, nema hramova. Zaštitni je znak Mohenja Dara izostanak bilo kakva graditeljskog samoveličanja.

Mohenjo Daro is also called Kukkutarma

Iravatham Mahadevan presented  a paper called “Akam and Puram: ‘Address’ Signs of the Indus Script” in 2010 at the International Tamil Conference. In his paper, amongst many things, Iravatham Mahadevan discusses the original name of Mohenjo Daro.

After reading and understanding his paper, in my own words, here is a summary of what and how he found out the original name of Mohenjo Daro…

Many seals with cock inscriptions were discovered in Mohenjo Daro. Because of the repeated occurrence of cocks in the seals, it is fair to assume that cocks played an important role in the city and its culture. One of the seals found in Mohenjo Daro is shown below in this post.

Thomas Burrow was an Indologist at the University of Oxford. He had published various books and papers in the field of linguistics and Indology. ‘Armaka’ is a Sanskrit word which means ‘ruined city’. In one of his papers, Thomas Burrow published a list of ruined cities mentioned in ancient Sanskrit literature – he did this by identifying all the cities ending with ‘armaka’ in the ancient Sanskrit literature.

It is safe to assume that most of the ruined cities mention in ancient sanskrit literature  must have belonged to the Indus Valley Civilization – because at the time of writing these ancient texts, most of the Indus Valley Cities must have been in a ruined state – and also at the time of writing these texts there were no Vedic cities in such ruined state.

One of the cities mentioned in the list of ruined cities composed by Thomas Burrow is ‘Kukkutarmaka’. ‘Kukkut’ in the Proto Dravidian language means ‘cock’. Hence ‘Kukkutarmaka’ mentioned in the list means ‘ruined city of cocks’.

In the seal shown in this blog post, the diamond shape inscription in the front of the two cocks, is the ideogram for ‘city’ (in the Indus Valley Script). And we already know that the word for cocks in Proto Dravidian language is ‘Kukkut’. And so Mohenjo Daro, during the Indus Valley Civilization times, was probably called ‘Kukkutarma’ i.e. ‘city of cocks’.

Kukkutarma = City of Cocks = Mohenjo Daro (in Indus Valley Civilization times)
Kukkutarmaka = Runied City of Cocks = Mohenjo Daro (after the end of Indus Civilization times)

Decline of the Mohenjo-daro

Mortimer Wheeler interpreted the presence of many unburied corpses found in the top levels of Mohenjo-daro as the victims of a warlike conquest, and famously stated that "Indra stands accused" of the destruction of the IVC. The assumed timeframe of the first Indo-Aryan migration into India corresponds neatly with the period of decline of the IVC seen in the archaeological record. The discovery of the advanced, urban IVC however changed the 19th-century view of early Indo-Aryan migration as an "invasion" of an advanced culture at the expense of a "primitive" aboriginal population to a gradual acculturation of nomadic "barbarians" on an advanced urban civilisation.

 

Indra


Indra

Aspects of Indra as a deity are cognate to other Indo-European gods; they are either thunder gods such as Thor, Perun, and Zeus who share parts of his heroic mythologies, act as king of gods, and all are linked to "rain and thunder". The similarities between Indra of Hindu mythologies and of Thor of Nordic and Germanic mythologies are significant, states Max Muller. Both Indra and Thor are storm gods, with powers over lightning and thunder, both carry hammer or equivalent, for both the weapon returns to their hand after they hurl it, both are associated with bulls in the earliest layer of respective texts, both use thunder as a battle-cry, both are heroic leaders, both protectors of mankind, both are described with legends about "milking the cloud-cows", both are benevolent giants, gods of strength, of life, of marriage and the healing gods, both are worshipped in respective texts on mountains and in forests.

Brave and heroic Innara or Inra, which sounds like Indra, is mentioned among the gods of the Mitanni, a Hurrian-speaking people of Hittite region.

Indra as a deity had a presence in northeastern Asia minor, as evidenced by the inscriptions on the Boghaz-köi clay tablets dated to about 1400 BCE. This tablet mentions a treaty, but its significance is in four names it includes reverentially as Mi-it-ra, U-ru-w-na, In-da-ra and Na-sa-at-ti-ia. These are respectively, Mitra, Varuna, Indra and Nasatya-Asvin of the Vedic pantheon as revered deities, and these are also found in Avestan pantheon but with Indra and Naonhaitya as demons. This at least suggests that Indra and his fellow deities were in vogue in South Asia and Asia minor by about mid 2nd-millennium BCE.

Indra is praised as the highest god in 250 hymns of the Rigveda. He is co-praised as the supreme in another 50 hymns, thus making him one of the most celebrated Vedic deities. He is also mentioned in ancient Indo-Iranian literature, but with a major inconsistency when contrasted with the Vedas. In the Vedic literature, Indra is a heroic god. In the Avestan (ancient, pre-Islamic Iranian) texts such as Vd. 10.9, Dk. 9.3 and Gbd 27.6-34.27, Indra – or accurately Andra – is a gigantic demon who opposes truth.  In the Vedic texts, Indra kills the archenemy and demon Vritra who threatens mankind. In the Avestan texts, Vritra is not found.

Indra is called vr̥tragʰná- (literally, "slayer of obstacles") in the Vedas, which corresponds to Verethragna of the Zoroastrian noun verethragna-. According to David Anthony, the Old Indic religion probably emerged among Indo-European immigrants in the contact zone between the Zeravshan River (present-day Uzbekistan) and (present-day) Iran.  It was "a syncretic mixture of old Central Asian and new Indo-European elements",  which borrowed "distinctive religious beliefs and practices" from the Bactria–Margiana Culture.  At least 383 non-Indo-European words were found in this culture, including the god Indra and the ritual drink Soma. According to Anthony,

Many of the qualities of Indo-Iranian god of might/victory, Verethraghna, were transferred to the god Indra, who became the central deity of the developing Old Indic culture. Indra was the subject of 250 hymns, a quarter of the Rig Veda. He was associated more than any other deity with Soma, a stimulant drug (perhaps derived from Ephedra) probably borrowed from the BMAC religion. His rise to prominence was a peculiar trait of the Old Indic speakers.


Turkmenistan c. 2500 BC

Namazga-Tepe

The explorations in the foothills of the Kopetdag revealed well developed irrigation systems with water control arrangements which resulted in prosperous, well settled large regional centres. The largest of these settlements is Namazga-Tepe with an area of 50 ha. The excavations done at this site lead to the discovery of six distinct periods. Named Namazgadepe I to VI, the periods extended over the late 5th millennium to early 3rd millennium BC. In the process of development over these centuries, the transition observed was from Chalcolithic period to Early Bronze Age with urban characteristics in the settlements. Dwelling houses also emerged from chaotically planned one room houses to larger houses with many rooms with the interiors painted (lac paintings) and with a hearth. Defensive forts were part of the settlements. Chalcolithic stone amulets with geometric shapes, pottery traditions with two-tiered furnaces for firing ceramics, terracotta figurines, stamp seals of clay and stone, and centres of metallurgical production were uncovered. Rosette and zoomorphic patterns were unearthed, representing various periods, both at Namazga-Tepe and also at other settlements in the foothills of the Kopetdag mountains. These are clearly indicative of the village cultures of Central Asia.


Namazga-Tepe

Geoksyurtepe

Geoksyur Oasis, located in the foothills of the Kopetdag, to the east of Altyntepe, is in the center of a cluster of tepes in the desert region on the northern Iranian border. It extends over an area of 12 ha. It is 20 kilometres (12 mi) to the east of the city of Tedzhen. Even though in the Aneolithic Period (4th – early 3rd century BC), the space between houses was used for burials, the settlement was not a cemetery but rather a settlement which was affected by shifting sand dunes and scarcity of water. Geoksyr was revealed to contain "adobe multi-room houses and group burial chambers". Ceramics were also found with dichromatic paintings and many female terracotta figurines. The culture of Geoksyurtepe was correlated with an eastern Anau group of tribes linked to Elam and Mesopotamia.

Gonurtepe

According to the Greek-Russian archaeologist, Sarianidi, who explored the tepes, Gonurtepe was the "capital or the imperial city of a complex Bronze Age state, one that stretched at least a thousand square miles and encompassing hundreds of satellite settlements". He also called it the "world's fifth center of ancient civilization" with its refined society called the "Turkmenistan's Morghab River society", formally called the "Bactria-Margiana Archaeological Complex". It is said to be in league with the "cultural cradles of antiquity" of Egypt, Mesopotamia, India, and China. The meandering Morghab River along which the Morghab civilization developed by Gonurdepe and Merv, which was once an important place along the Silk Route. But the river flows through the regional capital city of Mary, about 40 miles away from the exploration site of Gonurtepe. The site is dated to late 3rd millennium BC. Excavations have taken place for more than 35 years and still continue at a slow pace due to a lack of adequate funding. The main findings of the excavations are that the site was "an agricultural and herding community who grew grain, raised sheep, built sophisticated irrigation and sewage systems, and produced ceramics in the many kilns that dot the landscape." A fort had been built with thick walls and the enclosed area within the fort had single storied houses, and also a palace, two observatories and cremation grounds. The excavation of the cemeteries revealed many objects, both local and imported (from Indus Valley and Egypt). Religious practices indicated that it was the birthplace of the Zoroastrian religion, a monolithic religion. The practices of sheep sacrifices, temples dedicated to fire and water, drinking of soma-haoma (a brew presumed to be made of opium, ephedra, and a local narcotic) have been deduced as practices followed by Zoroastrians.


Terracotta figurine from Gonur Depe necropolis with a slender neck, aquiline nose, prominent eyes, arched eyebrows, receding forehead and a very distinctive headdress.


Gonur Tepe

The impressive size of the excavated remains of Gonur leads archaeologists to consider this the main city of the vast Bactria Margiana Archaeological Complex. This is the ancient Bronze Age civilization known as the Oxus Civilization, after the great Central Asian river, the Oxus, also known as Amu Darya.

Gonur and other fortified towns and settlements are in a region now covering the modern states of Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, northern Afganistan, and north eastern Iran.

The late Greek born Russian archaeologist, Viktor Sarianidi is mainly credited with the discovery of these sites and the subsequent diggings that are now clubbed as the BMAC.

These archaeology digs that have been going on here since 1970, attests to an advanced civilization, with well fortified towns and palace and temple complexes within, water and drainage systems.

Zoroastrianism might have begun here, or at least it's forerunner.

 

BMAC or Oxus civilisation, c. 2300 - 1700 BC


BMAC

The Bactrian-Margiana archeological complex, which thrived from 2300 to 1700 aec, was a culture of sedentary farmers living in fortified villages in the area between what is now Kazakhstan and Afghanistan. Their culture was related more to the cultures to the south than to the cultures of the steppes to their north, and they may have been of Dravidian stock.

It is possible that the Indo-Iranians raided the farmers of the area over centuries, eventually becoming a dominating group while adopting the farmers' culture (similar to the way that China succumbed to the "barbarians" from the steppes to the west).


BMAC

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Kushans (Kushano-Bactrian)

Early Kushans

Some traces remain of the presence of the Kushans in the area of Bactria and Sogdiana. Archaeological structures are known in Takht-I-Sangin, Surkh Kotal (a monumental temple), and in the palace of Khalchayan. Various sculptures and friezes are known, representing horse-riding archers, and significantly men with artificially deformed skulls, such as the Kushan prince of Khalchayan (a practice well attested in nomadic Central Asia). The Chinese first referred to these people as the Yuezhi and said they established the Kushan Empire, although the relationship between the Yuezhi and the Kushans is still unclear. On the ruins of ancient Hellenistic cities such as Ai-Khanoum, the Kushans are known to have built fortresses.

Old Bactrian

It was long thought that Avestan represented "Old Bactrian", but this notion had "rightly fallen into discredit by the end of the 19th century".

Bactrian, which was written predominantly in an alphabet based on the Greek script, was known natively as αριαο /aryāu̯ɔ/ ("Arya"; an endonym common amongst Iranian peoples). It has also been known by names such as Greco-Bactrian, Kushan or Kushano-Bactrian.

Under Kushan rule, Bactria became known as Tukhara or Tokhara, and later as Tokharistan. When texts in two extinct and previously unknown Indo-European languages were discovered in the Tarim Basin of China, during the early 20th Century, they were linked circumstantially to Tokharistan, and Bactrian was sometimes referred to as "Eteo-Tocharian" (i.e. "true" or "original" Tocharian). By the 1970s, however, it became clear that there was little evidence for such a connection. For instance, the Tarim "Tocharian" languages were part of the so-called "centum group" within the Indo-European family, and were most closely related to the Anatolian languages, whereas Bactrian was a satemised Iranian language.

Kushans

Chinese sources describe the Guishuang (貴霜), i.e. the Kushans, as one of the five aristocratic tribes of the Yuezhi, with some people claiming they were a loose confederation of Indo-European peoples, though many scholars are still unconvinced that they originally spoke an Indo-European language. As the historian John E. Hill has put it: "For well over a century ... there have been many arguments about the ethnic and linguistic origins of the Da Yuezhi (大月氏), Kushans (貴霜), and the Tochari, and still there is little consensus".

The Yuezhi were described in the Records of the Great Historian and the Book of Han as living in the grasslands of Gansu, in the northwest of modern-day China, until they were driven west by the Xiongnu in 176–160 BCE. The five tribes constituting the Yuezhi are known in Chinese history as Xiūmì (休密), Guìshuāng (貴霜), Shuāngmǐ (雙靡), Xìdùn (肸頓), and Dūmì (都密).

The Yuezhi reached the Hellenic kingdom of Greco-Bactria (in northern Afghanistan and Uzbekistan) around 135 BC. The displaced Greek dynasties resettled to the southeast in areas of the Hindu Kush and the Indus basin (in present-day Afghanistan and Pakistan), occupying the western part of the Indo-Greek Kingdom.

Yuezhi

The Yuezhi or Rouzhi (Chinese: 月氏; pinyin: Yuèzhī; Wade–Giles: Yüeh4-chih1, [ɥê ʈʂí]) were an ancient people first reported in Chinese histories as nomadic pastoralists living in an arid grassland area in the western part of the modern Chinese province of Gansu, during the 1st Millenium BC. After a major defeat by the Xiongnu, during the 2nd century BC, the Yuezhi split into two groups: the Greater Yuezhi (Dà Yuèzhī 大月氏) and Lesser Yuezhi (Xiǎo Yuèzhī 小月氏).

Following their defeat, the Greater Yuezhi initially migrated northwest into the Ili Valley (on the modern borders of China and Kazakhstan), where they reportedly displaced elements of the Sakas (Scythians). They were driven from the Ili Valley by the Wusun and migrated southward to Sogdia and later settled in Bactria, where they then defeated the Greco-Bactrian Kingdom. The Greater Yuezhi have consequently often been identified with Bactrian peoples mentioned in classical European sources, like the Tókharioi (Greek Τοχάριοι; Sanskrit Tukhāra) and Asii (or Asioi). During the 1st century BC, one of the five major Greater Yuezhi tribes in Bactria, the Kushanas (Chinese: 貴霜; pinyin: Guishuang), began to subsume the other tribes and neighbouring peoples. The subsequent Kushan Empire, at its peak in the 3rd century CE, stretched from Turfan in the Tarim Basin, in the north to Pataliputra on the Gangetic plain of India in the south. The Kushanas played an important role in the development of trade on the Silk Road and the introduction of Buddhism to China.

Most of the Lesser Yuezhi appear to have migrated southward into Tibet. However, some are reported to have settled among the Qiang people in Qinghai, and to have been involved in the Liangzhou Rebellion (184–221 CE). Others are said to have founded the city state of Cumuḍa (now known as Kumul and Hami 哈密) in the eastern Tarim. A fourth group of Lesser Yuezhi may have become part of the Jie people of Shanxi, who established the 4th Century AD Later Zhao state (although this remains controversial).

While the Yuezhi have often been associated with artifacts of extinct cultures in the Tarim Basin, such as the Tarim mummies and the so-called Tocharian languages, the evidence for any such link is purely circumstantial.

Turkish Xiongnu

The famous Tarim Basin mummies (Xinjiang, in western China) are from this time period as well, the earliest dating to 1800 bc. By the final centuries bc, the Yuezhi would be displaced by the Turkish Xiongnu, the beginnings of the westward movement of Turkish tribes that would eventually lead them to Anatolia and domination of central Asia, while the Indo-Europeans of the steppes moved towards and into southern Asia.

 

Turkic peoples

Y-DNA Q


Haplogroup Q


Turkic language

It is generally agreed that the first Turkic people lived in a region extending from Central Asia to Siberia, with the majority of them living in China historically. Historically they were established after the 6th century BCE. The earliest separate Turkic peoples appeared on the peripheries of the late Xiongnu confederation about 200 BCE (contemporaneous with the Chinese Han Dynasty). Turkic people may be related to the Xiongnu, Dingling and Tiele people. According to the Book of Wei, the Tiele people were the remnants of the Chidi (赤狄), the red Di people competing with the Jin in the Spring and Autumn period. Turkic tribes such as the Khazars and Pechenegs probably lived as nomads for many years before establishing the Turkic Khaganate or Göktürk Empire in the 6th century. These were herdsmen and nobles who were searching for new pastures and wealth. The first mention of Turks was in a Chinese text that mentioned trade between Turk tribes and the Sogdians along the Silk Road. The first recorded use of "Turk" as a political name appears as a 6th-century reference to the word pronounced in Modern Chinese as Tujue. The Ashina clan migrated from Li-jien (modern Zhelai Zhai) to the Juan Juan seeking inclusion in their confederacy and protection from the prevalent dynasty. The tribe were famed metalsmiths and were granted land near a mountain quarry which looked like a helmet, from which they were said to have gotten their name 突厥 (tūjué). A century later their power had increased such that they conquered the Juan Juan and established the Gök Empire.

 

Hindu Kush

The Hindu Kush (Persian: هندوکش‎, (Sanskrit: हिन्दू कुश; /kʊʃ, kuːʃ/), also known in Ancient Greek as the Caucasus Indicus (Ancient Greek: Καύκασος Ινδικός) or Paropamisadae (Ancient Greek: Παροπαμισάδαι), is an 800-kilometre-long (500 mi) mountain range that stretches through Afghanistan, from its centre to northern Pakistan and into Tajikistan and China. The commonly assumed meaning refers to the Indian slaves who died due to its harsh weather.

It forms the western section of the Hindu Kush Himalayan Region (HKH) and is the westernmost extension of the Pamir Mountains, the Karakoram and the Himalayas. It divides the valley of the Amu Darya (the ancient Oxus) to the north from the Indus River valley to the south.

The Hindu Kush is a formidable mountain range to cross with most peaks being between 4,400 and 5,200 m (14,500 and 17,000 ft), and some much higher. The mountains experience heavy snowfall and blizzards, with the lowest mountain pass through them being southern Shibar pass (2,700 m or 9,000 ft) where the Hindu Kush range terminates. Other mountain passes being generally about 3,700 m (12,000 ft) or higher. They become passable in late spring and summer.

The mountains of the Hindu Kush range diminish in height as they stretch westward. Near Kabul, in the west, they attain heights of 3,500 to 4,000 meters (11,500 to 13,100 ft); in the east they extend from 4,500 to 6,000 meters (14,800 to 19,700 ft). The average altitude of the Hindu Kush is 4,500 meters (14,800 feet).

The Hindu Kush system stretches about 966 kilometres (600 mi) laterally, and its median north-south measurement is about 240 kilometres (150 mi). Only about 600 kilometres (370 mi) of the Hindu Kush system is called the Hindu Kush mountains. The rest of the system consists of numerous smaller mountain ranges.

 

Mumije iz Tarima

Kushans


Is this the original Witches hat that has come down through history? Maybe genetic memory is involved!

Mumije iz Tarima (1800. pr. Kr.) su pronađene na istom području kao i toharski tekstovi i freske Tarimske zavale (300. do 900. godina) a indoeuropskog su podrijetla i ukazuju na Europeidnu rasu svjetlih očiju i boje kose. Nepoznato je jesu li mumije i freske povezane.

Godine 2008. iskopani su u okolici Turpana ostaci muškarca. Tijelo muškarca je bilo zakopano s nizom praktičnih i ceremonijskih objekata, među njima strijeljačkom opremom, harfom i 789 grama kanabisa. Istraživači tijelo povezuju s Guši kulturom. Uz pomoć datiranja ugljikom-14, pokapanje je okvirno datirano na 700. godinu. Od ukupno 500 grobova samo dva sadržavaju kanabis što istraživače navodi na zaključak da su te dvije osobe možda bile šamani.

2009. godine su analizirani ostaci trideset osoba iz Xiaohe grobnice kako bi se istražili njihovi Y-kromosom i mitohonrdijski DNK markeri. Rezultati sugeriraju da je na području Tarimske zavale još u Brončano doba živjelo stanovništvo miješanog zapadnjačkog i istočnjačkog podrijetla. Mitohondrijski DNA Xiahoe (mtDNA) ljudi je pretežito istočnoazijska haploskupina C s manjim brojem H i K haploskupina, dok su njihove očinske linije sve zapadnoeuroazijske R1a1a. Geografsko područje na kojem se zbilo miješanje tih grupa je nepoznato no pretpostavlja se da je južni Sibir vjerojatan.

 
Haplogroup G2a - Haplogroup R1a

 

The White Tribes of Ancient China

4,000 Year Old Lost Tribe


An Artists impression of what this mummie possibly looked like when alive.

One of the most fantastic finds in the last half of the twentieth century has to be the discovery of a Northern European tribe found in the northeast corner of Xinjiang province, near the Celestial Mountains and the Taklimakan Desert on the edge of the Gobi desert.

The story starts in 1978 when the Chinese archaeologist, Wang Binghus, started searching for ancient sites. He began by following stream beds, and asking the locals if they had ever come across any broken pots and artifacts. He eventually came across a few people who pointed out that there was a place called Qizilchoqa, or, as the local people called it, Red hill. Here he made the most amazing discovery, the first of the mummies. It had been placed in a grave on the side of the hill.


He looks like he is sleeping, but he is over 4,000 years old!

It was a simple site, rush mats were on the floor, and some of the bodies were buried in the foetal position. In effect, the mummies were not what you would call real mummies, in the sense that they were not embalmed. They had been preserved in an amazing way. They had been placed in the ground, which had been subjected to a unique weather system. Heat, aridity, and bitter winter cold, mixed with a salty soil, had preserved them better than other mummies found around the world. Even the clothing was still perfectly recognizable.


Tarim 42

The bodies were excavated and taken to the museum in the city of Urumqi. There were 113 bodies taken from the site. At the time the Chinese government did not have enough funds to excavate the find. Wang eventually discovered three more burial sites.

The faces of the mummies were very well preserved, so, on closer examination, they could see that they were not Chinese. They had blonde hair, big eyes, and European noses.

At that time, Chinese tradition had always shown the fact that they believed China had developed independently from the rest of the world. Because of this, the government was reluctant to bring the finds to the public attention.

But soon they realized that the proof was irrefutable.


Tarim - map where the mummies were found


The tarim mummies

The most extraordinary thing about the mummies was the fact that their clothes were in such good condition. A jacket belonging to one man, over three thousand years old, still had a crimson edge. And the women had artificial extensions in their hair.

This tribe was obviously very advanced for its day. On one of the mummies, there is a scar which shows they had rudimentary operating skills. It had been sown up with horses hair.


Mummie of Tarim The beauty of loulan..

When the West was eventually allowed to visit the mummies, Dr. Victor Mair, who was a Professor of Chinese at Pennsylvania University, took a tour around the museum. Imagine his surprise when he saw these amazing mummies, which had been kept in a dark room, in glass-topped boxes.

At this time, the Chinese authorities were still a bit reluctant to let anybody know about them, so it has taken quite a long time for the West to be able to study them properly.

Eventually in 1993, they were allowed back with a team of geneticists from Italy. And this is when they began to study them properly. They used the most up to date technology of the time to confirm the date of the mummies. They now believe that they are about 4,000 years old, and the youngest about 2,000. There are probably many more to be found, possibly in the same region of China, but it is also possible they could have settled anywhere in China, as long as the conditions were suitable to live in.


Atlantean Gardens - wording.

These people were from the Bronze age, they were Caucasian, and it is possible that they interacted with the indigenous people at that time. The local people probably taught them their traditions, and the Caucasians most likely introduced them to their way of life as well.

There were two cartwheels found at the burial sites, very similar to what you might find in Russia, or nearby countries. These amazing people were probably Scandinavian or German; it is amazing to think that they trekked across China all the way from Europe, 4,000 years ago, taking their traditions and language with them. How many other tribes were there? Who knows?

These people were from the Bronze age, they were Caucasian, and it is possible that they interacted with the indigenous people at that time. The local people probably taught them their traditions, and the Caucasians most likely introduced them to their way of life as well.

There were two cartwheels found at the burial sites, very similar to what you might find in Russia, or nearby countries. These amazing people were probably Scandinavian or German; it is amazing to think that they trekked across China all the way from Europe, 4,000 years ago, taking their traditions and language with them. How many other tribes were there? Who knows?


The Beauty of Loulan Mummie artists impression

I think that one of the most fascinating things about this story is that the local people, even today, that live in the area where the bodies were found speak a language called Tocharian, the most eastern branch of Indo-European.

This language is closely related to German and Celtic. I think the other most amazing thing about these people is that they walked all the way across China, taking with them their families, and a mixture of animals, probably goats and sheep.

Feeling the cold, and the heat, catching diseases that they didn't know anything about, unsure whether they would survive the different climate. Babies were born, people died, and all the time not knowing whether they would be safe or if the indigenous people would accept them.

Their lust for adventure and discovering new places gave them strength and determination to survive. They were amazing people, and I hope that soon we will be able to see these wonderful discoveries and learn more about these courageous human beings that came from the beginning of history.


Tarim mummies

 

Kashmir


Kashmir

 

Buddhas of Bamyan


Taller Buddha of Bamyan before 2001


Smaller Buddha in 1977


Drawing of the Buddhas of Bamyan, visited by Alexander Burnes in 1832


Photographed by Françoise Foliot


Destruction of the site by the Taliban


Taller Buddha in 1963 and in 2008 after destruction


Buddhas of Bamiyan, Afghanistan after destruction in 2001 by the Taliban


Smaller Buddha, after destruction

 
Taller Buddha, after destruction

 
Site of the smaller statue in 2005 - Caution Sign, 2017

Bronze Age Europe Index Dynastic race