Some Aspects of Interpretation of Early Medieval Rocky Burials in the Altai-Sayan Region and Mongolia
The article considers the rocky burials of the early Middle Ages researched in the territory of the Altai-Sayan region and Mongolia. In spite of the fact that such objects are not numerous, the analysis of the available materials is very perspective. The article examines results of excavation of ten rocky burials located in Altai (3 objects), Mongolia (5 objects) and the Minusinsk Depression (2 objects). Two main traditions of the construction of the objects are distinguished. The author separately considers the specifics of children’s rocky burials. Characteristic feature of such complexes is the wooden construction in the form of the pack or a cradle executing functions of the funeral camera. The general and special indices of the rocky burials built for adults are shown. The possibilities of cultural, chronological and social interpretation of the available materials of excavation are considered. The author assumes that the most part of rocky burials belong to the last quarter of 1st thousand AD — the beginning of 2nd thousand AD. The considered objects can be related with the cult u re of the early medieval Tu rks which came under inf luence of traditions of other nomadic groups. Considering a fragmentariness of the available materials, the offered interpretation of rocky burials could be added and corrected with the advent of new data.
Key words: rocky burials, Altai-Sayan region, Mongolia, early Middle Ages, analysis, interpretation, early medieval Turks
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