lecture 5 - December 5, 2006 Archaeology of pastoral nomads...

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December 5, 2006 Archaeology of pastoral nomads – Southern Russia Around 3500 BC migratory individuals dependent on cattle and horses emerge in the Russian territory. They lack cities and there is ambiguous evidence whether and to what extent they practiced agriculture. There is some evidence for the practice of agriculture in the southern Ural Mountains region. Between the pastoral nomads and the sedentary populations - traditionally antagonistic relationship. The best known example is the Mongols of the 11 th and 12 th century AD. They formed a pastoral-nomadic empire with centralized authority and unified tribes which fought against the centers of civilization. Identity – who were these people? They occupied the region under the control of the former USSR. Traditionally (according to 6 th century BC accounts of Herodotus) they are though to be of Indo-Iranian ethnicity, akin to the people of India and Iran (Aryans). There is, however, reason to support this assertion. Herodotus wrote about the Scythians inhabiting colonies off the Black Sea who were said to be Indo-Iranians. The Scythian burials found in the Black Sea region were extrapolated to the 2000 BC presence of Andronovo culture. Andronovo is an archaeological culture which seemed Indo-Iranian but the cultural similarity in the region should not be synonymous with shared ethnicity and its continuation. Today the area is Turkic speaking – Muslim Turkic speaking populations inhabit it, excluding
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lecture 5 - December 5, 2006 Archaeology of pastoral nomads...

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