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The Marfa Kurgan in the Stavropol Territory: An Example of an Ancient Architectural Structure

https://doi.org/10.17746/1563-0110.2020.48.2.038-048

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Abstract

This study focuses on the analysis of structural elements of the Marfa kurgan in the Stavropol Territory. We list and examine terms referring to such elements, and suggest our own. A description of the kurgan, its natural environment, excavation techniques, sampling, and analytical methods is provided. The material of which the kurgan was made is assessed, and its advantages over other materials are demonstrated. We studied mud blocks (or “bricks”), their clay coatings, and a striped adobe element from the kurgan. Results of chemical and granulometric analyses are outlined, along with those of the micromorphological analysis of soils underlying the kurgan, of the material of which the “bricks” and the coatings were made. The blocks were molded by thoroughly kneading and compacting a moistened material consisting of loess with the addition of river silt, without plant admixture. Clay coatings were much denser, as it consisted of a coherent finely dispersed clay-carbonate material. Clay mortar, similar to coatings in composition and properties, was used to connect the blocks and the stones of the crepidoma. The same mortar was used for foundations of clay “bricks” buildings. The adobe element with thinnest variously colored stripes resulted from a destruction of an earlier structure.

About the Authors

O. S. Khokhlova
Institute of Physicochemical and Biological Problems in Soil Science, Federal Research Center “Pushchino Scientific Center for Biological Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences”
Russian Federation
Institutskaya 2, Pushchino, 142290


A. O. Nagler
Deutsches Archäologisches Institut, Eurasien-Abteilung
Germany
Im Dol 2–6, Haus 2, 14195, Berlin


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For citation:


Khokhlova O.S., Nagler A.O. The Marfa Kurgan in the Stavropol Territory: An Example of an Ancient Architectural Structure. Archaeology, Ethnology & Anthropology of Eurasia. 2020;48(2):38-48. https://doi.org/10.17746/1563-0110.2020.48.2.038-048

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ISSN 1563-0110 (Print)