MALASHEV V.Yu. Traditions of the Middle Sarmatian Culture in Burial Mounds of the Caspian Dagestan in the Second Half of the 2nd - First Half of the 5th Century A.D.


Vladimir Yuryevich Malashev

Candidate of Sciences (History), Senior Researcher, Department of Scythian and Sarmatian Archaeology,

Institute of Archaeology, RAS

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Dm. Ulyanova St. 19, 117036 Mosсow, Russian Federation

Abstract. The continuity of a number of the traditions which are going back to a funeral ceremony of Middle Sarmatiаn culture is observed in the burial grounds of Caspian Dagestan dating back to the second half of the 2nd - first half of the 5th centuries. The signs of this culture are gradually transformed in these traditions. It was complicated by the influences of  traditions of Late Sarmatian culture (orientation of some corpses); the traditions of early Sarmatian population are more significant: catacombs of type II, narrow pits and loculuses, the western orientation of the corpse. The author highlights the major importance of the results of contacts between the descendants of the Middle Sarmatiаn culture and the population of Alan North Caucasus culture, manifested in the spread of the catacombs of type I and the formation of the catacombs of type IV under their influence. At the same time there is a sharp decrease in the proportion of burials in narrow rectangular pits and the disappearance of the diagonal position of corpses (middle 3rd-4th Centuries A.D.), that leads to the formation of a ritual complex, fixed in Lvovsky cemeteries. This complex was moved from its native territory of the Terek-Sulak interfluve to the Southern Dagestan in the 1st half - the middle of the 4th century A.D., where it was preserved until the 1st half - the middle of the 5th century A.D. This completes the process of development of the Middle Sarmatian ritual complex in the region which absorbed a number of traditions of Early Sarmatian time. The complex existed in relative isolation from the late cultural Sarmatian influences, but it was affected by bearers of Alan culture. Considering also that formation of Alan culture passed on the basis of culture of the population of the region in the 2nd century B.C. - 1st century A.D. under the influence of a middle Sarmatian migratory impulse, the author assumes that carriers of the Middle Sarmatian traditions with the assistance of the population of plains of the central and East regions of the North Caucasus of early Sarmatian time played the defining role in cultural and historical processes of the 1st half of 1st millennium A.D. in this territory.

Key words: Middle Sarmatiаn culture, Alanian culture, North-East Caucasus, burial mounds, burial ritual.

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Traditions of the Middle Sarmatian Culture in Burial Mounds of the Caspian Dagestan in the Second Half of the 2nd - First Half of the 5th Century A.D. by Malashev V.Yu. is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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