PHYRIGIAN NECROPOLIS (METU Museum)


The Phrygian Necropolis is located in the region of the Ataturk Forest Farm, Ataturk's Mausoleum and Bahcelievler. Of the fourteen tumuluses located, three have been opened, using scientific techniques.

In the south-west of Ankara, on the road to the Forest Farm and in the region of Bestepeler, a 15 metre wide and 3.5 metre high tumulus has been found, with a wooden grave room, in a rectangular hollow. The grave room which has not succumbed to plunder was found with its ceiling collapsed. The walls and roof were covered with bamboo. Near the room's north wall a bed with a corpse laid out on it is found. With the bronze braclets and bronze necklace it is estimated that the body is that of a woman.

The largest tumulus is located at the crossroad to the Forest Farm. It is approximately 124 metres wide and 24 metres high. The grave room is covered with stones reaching 6 metres high and because the stones have collapsed the burial gifts have been broken into little pieces. The corpse was located near the east wall on a canope.

Beside the bronze vessels, pieces of material were located suggesting that a tablecloth was used on a wooden table. Near the collapsed south wall, pieces of bronze and wood indicate that a wooden shutter existed on the wall.

A burnt region on the hill top suggests that a crematorium existed to burn the dead in rituals. Under a thin layer of soil, ashes have yielded the bones of two bulls and the remnants of cooking utensils. Near this site burnt, vessels, a furnace and brazier with burnt wood and bronze tablets underneath it were found. A wheel, yoke, axle tip pieces and bronze links found in the area point to the use of a vehicle. Fibres found near the crematorium and the grave room of the tumulus indicate the date of these findings as probably the end of 700 B.C. or the beginning of 600 B.C..

In the Museum there are also various ethnographical art items on display such as, wooden window frames, doors, door locks, drills, kilims and copper vessels. Furthermore, there are some items which have been purchased from outside organisations such as, glass objects from the Roman period and a Hellenistic Lekythos.


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