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Article contents

Immigration and transhumance in the Early Bronze Age Carpathian Basin: the occupants of a kurgan

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 January 2015

Claudia Gerling
Affiliation:
Institut für Prähistorische Archäologie, Freie Universität Berlin, Altensteinstr. 15, Berlin 14195, Germany Department of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Bristol, 43 Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1UU, UK
Eszter Bánffy
Affiliation:
Institute of Archaeology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Uri u. 49, Budapest 1014, Hungary
János Dani
Affiliation:
Déri Múzeum Debrecen, Déri tér 1, Debrecen 4026, Hungary
Kitti Köhler
Affiliation:
Institute of Archaeology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Uri u. 49, Budapest 1014, Hungary
Gabriella Kulcsár
Affiliation:
Institute of Archaeology, Research Centre for the Humanities, Hungarian Academy of Sciences, Uri u. 49, Budapest 1014, Hungary
Alistair W.G. Pike
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Bristol, 43 Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1UU, UK
Vajk Szeverényi
Affiliation:
Móra Ferenc Múzeum, 1–3 Roosevelt tér, Szeged, Hungary
Volker Heyd
Affiliation:
Department of Archaeology & Anthropology, University of Bristol, 43 Woodland Road, Bristol BS8 1UU, UK
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Extract

You never know until you look. The authors deconstruct a kurgan burial mound in the Great Hungarian Plain designated to the Yamnaya culture, to find it was actually shared by a number of different peoples. The Yamnaya were an influential immigrant group of the Late Copper Age/Early Bronze Age transition. The burials, already characterised by their grave goods, were radiocarbon dated and further examined using stable isotope analysis on the human teeth. The revealing sequence began with a young person of likely local origin buried around or even before the late fourth millennium BC—a few centuries before the arrival of the Yamnaya. It ended around 500 years later with a group of different immigrants, apparently from the eastern mountains. These are explained as contacts built up between the mountains and the plain through the practice of transhumance.

Type
Research article
Copyright
Copyright © Antiquity Publications Ltd. 2012

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