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A RITUAL COMPLEX WITH DEER STONES AT UUSHIGIIN UVUR/ULAAN UUSHIG, MONGOLIA: COMPOSITION AND CONSTRUCTION STAGES (BASED ON THE 2013 EXCAVATIONS)

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Abstract

Composition and construction history of a ritual complex with deer stones at Uushigiin uvur, Hovsgol aimag, Mongolia, are inferred from fi ndings of large-scale excavations in 2013. The earliest elements of the complex were six catacombs fi lled with stones, and ritual pits. Possible placement of known deer stones was discovered, and lower parts of fi ve new ones were found in situ. The excavated part of the complex included two ensembles similar in composition and consisting of rows of deer stones. Each ensemble rested on two stone platforms, one curved (oriented in a north-south direction), the other rectangular (oriented in an east-west direction and accompanied by stone stelae). Deer stones were placed along the western edge of the curved platforms. East, north, and south of the ensembles, altars with buried horse bones were discovered. These objects did not overlap one another, which suggests a single compositional structure of the work. Further north, two more rows of deer stones were situated. On the eastern side of those, there were similar altars, and on the western side, stone rings with fragments of calcined animal bones. In terms of structure and composition, all ensembles (platforms with stelae, an arc of altars with horse remains from the east, stone rings with calcined animal bones from the west) are similar to ritual constructions around funerary mounds—the khereksurs of Central Mongolia, supporting the idea that deer stones had replaced actual burials.

About the Authors

A. A. Kovalev
Institute of Archaeology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Dm. Ulyanova 19, Moscow, 117036, Russia
Russian Federation


D. Erdenebaatar
National University of Mongolia, P.O.-51, Box-167, Ulaanbaatar-51, Mongolia
Mongolia


I. V. Rukavishnikova
Institute of Archaeology, Russian Academy of Sciences, Dm. Ulyanova 19, Moscow, 117036, Russia
Russian Federation


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For citation:


Kovalev A.A., Erdenebaatar D., Rukavishnikova I.V. A RITUAL COMPLEX WITH DEER STONES AT UUSHIGIIN UVUR/ULAAN UUSHIG, MONGOLIA: COMPOSITION AND CONSTRUCTION STAGES (BASED ON THE 2013 EXCAVATIONS). Archaeology, Ethnology & Anthropology of Eurasia. 2016;44(1):82-92. (In Russ.)

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