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Bronze Age

Bronze Age

Bronze age - one of the large periods in the history of mankind when instruments of labor and the weapon from bronze start to play the leading role. In a steppe zone of Eurasia it is dated the end of III - the beginning of the I centuries BC, i.e. proceeded about one and a half thousand years. Bronze — a copper alloy with other metals. Qualitative bronze surpasses copper in hardness and durability and doesn't concede some usual steel.

The central Kazakhstan was one of the main areas of formation and development of andronov’s tribes. A congestion of various monuments of this period in rather limited territory, their appearance, equipment of a construction, a level of production testify to advanced culture which it is possible to call classical andronovo. «Carriers of andronovo culture became the main population of the Kazakh steppes during a bronze era». In the Karaganda area settlements of andronovs and more than 500 barrows which are dating an era of bronze and early nomadism are revealed.

The earliest materials of an era of bronze (the end of the III millennium B.C.) are found in a burial ground Karagash in the Karkaraly area. In one of burials of this burial ground the man with a copper knife, the razor and clay vessels was buried.

Since the beginning of the II millennium BC and till XIV—XIII centuries BC (the period of average bronze) in Kazakhstan there were cultures of andronovo cultural-historical community - atasusk(Alakul) and Nura (Fedorov). It is conditionally accepted to call the population of the average period of an era of bronze andronov.

Andronovs created high level of culture, their society was headed by the military leaders who were armed fighting chariots. The remains of such chariot were found in Satan's burial ground in Talda's riverheads in the Karkaraly area. The ancient soldier was buried together with a chariot which had pair of wheels in diameter about a meter, the rim was wooden and incorporated to a nave ten spokes. On such chariots andronovo soldiers battled to enemies. Standing on quickly rushing chariot, they shot opponents from onions.

Andronovs had the difficult public organization reconstructed on archaeological data. The high social status of leaders and elders was fixed and after their death, to them erected monumental gravestones constructions - barrows. So, in a burial ground of Aksu-Ayuly-2 the biggest barrow had diameter of 17,5 meters. Under it there was the double stone fencing which was turning on two funeral chambers, imposed with stone plates. Similar barrows are known in a burial ground of Ortau-2 on the river to Atas. Ordinary andronovets buried in fencings of the small sizes. In andronovo society the important role was played by metallurgists and the smiths supplying the population with metal.

Andronovs lived in conditions of droughty climate, mastering mainly territories in flood plains of the rivers. They knew agriculture, but provided the requirements they generally at the expense of house cattle breeding.

From the most ancient times in steppes of Kazakhstan the huge role was allocated for cattle breeding. During a bronze era sheep and cows were the main economic animals. Horses were the major vehicle.

The culture of andronovs has many parallels with culture ancient arias, known on sources — Rigveda and Avesta. Possibly, the environment of andronovs of Kazakhstan also left those arias which migrated more than three thousand years ago on the territory of Hindustan where laid the foundation for an Old Indian civilization. Other part of andronovo tribes remained on the lands of Kazakhstan, having taken part in the most difficult formation of cultures of the subsequent eras.

Rich stocks of copper ores of the Central Kazakhstan became a basis for development of the powerful center of metallurgy of andronovo culture.

At an average stage of a bronze age the population of Kazakhstan adhered shepherd or near with house, cattle breeding forms.

In late bronze (the begazy-dandybay culture which was created on the basis of andronovo culture existed the XIII—IX centuries BC) in the Central Kazakhstan. Archeologists studied begazy-dandybay burial grounds of Dandybay, Begaza, Aybas-Darasa, Bugula, Sangyru-1 and Sangyru-3; settlements Atasu-1, Akmustaf, Myrzhik, Karkaraly-1, Karkaraly-2, Karkaraly-3 (Suykbulak), Kent, Buguly-1, Buguly-2, Shortandybulak and others.

People of a begazy-dandybay era passed from pastoral cattle breeding to distant-pasture which was more effective form of economic development. This transition provided preconditions and conditions of formation of the peculiar steppe civilization created by begazy-dandybay society. During this era there are especially large settlements — prototypes of the most ancient cities. The ancient settlement Kent in the mountains with the same name in the Karkaraly area is best of all studied.

This culture received the name on characteristic burial grounds of Dandybay and Begaza in the Karaganda area.

Begazy's burial ground is in 30 km from the settlement Aktogay on Begaza's right river bank. A large number of burials of different time and character enters into a complex of a burial ground. For construction huge plates from fanit were used is powerful to three tons. The particular interest is represented by gravestones constructions from a stone. Begazy monuments represent one or two-chamber constructions of the square form, which party are strictly focused on parts of the world. Walls of an internal square are dug into soil and revetted with the flat granite plates established vertically or horizontally, laid out from a stone.

Tribes of this culture occupied the territory from east slopes of the Ural mountains to the foothills of Altai. One of the main signs of begazy-dandybay culture is the ceramics which has received the name rollering. The roller - molded corbel from clay which decorated a mouth of a ceramic vessel. The roller as the chronological epoch-making sign, was widespread very widely on the Euroasian steppe belt from Altai to the Balkan Peninsula. The roller ceramics is found in all burials and settlements of begazy-dandybay culture.

On settlements Kent, Shortandybulak, Buguly-2 the ceramic ware combining signs early (fedorovo-nurinsky) and late (rollering) is found. It testifies to an origin of begazy-dandybay rollering ware from andronov and continuity of the andronov and dandybay population. Andronov and dandybay didn't differ on anthropological shape. Studying of three skulls from dandybay burials in burial grounds Enbek-Suygush and Shoindykol in Bayanaul’s mountains showed that they treat andronov caucasoid type. Therefore, begazy-dandybay were descendants of andronovo.

During a begazy-dandybay era there were essential changes in life of people. The distant-pasture cattle breeding came to change complex cattle breeding agricultural to an economy of andronovs. At this form of cattle breeding of a pasture are distributed on winter and summer, or in the winter the cattle is on the stall contents in the settlement, and is driven away on the Lithuanian in the summer. At this way of managing from scotomas on summer pastures all population of the settlement or its most part leaves.

Saryarka's inhabitants during begazy-dandybay time planted cows, horses, a small cattle, held dogs. Objects of hunting were a saiga, argali, a pendent, a wild boar, a maral, an elk, a wolf, korsak, a groundhog, a beaver, large birds. The basis of osteological collections of settlements is made by bones large and a small cattle and a horse. The remains of wild fauna don't exceed 2 %. Hunting had subsidiary value. With meat and dairy food of begazy-dandybayes the cattle breeding economy provided.

«Mobility of begazy-dandybays wasn't so high also. They lived on coast of the rivers and large streams in dwellings of stationary type. Usually in the settlement was from 4-5 to 20 dwellings. For their construction dug out a ditch depth about 0,5 m. Its walls strengthened vertical stone plates, a tiled laying or a wattle fence from tala.

Very important results were received at researches of monuments in the Kentish mountainous massif where the grandiose settlement Kent was open. Its area on the right coast of river Kyzylkenysh - 150 000 sq.m. Together with settlements Alat, Alat-1, Alat-2 located on the left coast opposite to Kent, the total area makes 300 000 sq.m.

Kent in essence — the city of an era of late bronze.

On Kent magnificent carved products from a bone and the horns decorated with a filigree ornament are found. Purpose of many subjects isn't found out. But all products were made by Kentish masters as numerous preparations, a waste of bonecarve craft and bonecarve tools are found. Bonecarve business reached level of the craft production calculated on realization of production to customers or on the market. The same masters carvers, possibly, cut out from pyrophyllite the subjects which appointment yet it is not possible to define unequivocally. On Kent yet it was not possible to open a site of bronze workshops. Probably, this business of time, after all is dug out only about 2 % of the area of a monument. As well as in mausoleums, on Kent there is a ware of unculture shape which makes about 5 % of all ceramic collection received during excavation. Fragments of the vessels made on a potter's wheel are found. It is obviously imported ware. The main region of finding of such ceramics — the Southern Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan, separate copies are identical to the Iranian prototypes. Other line of comparisons of Kentish imported ware indicates East Priaralie. One more component of import ware has analogies in ceramics of elov and irmen cultures of Western Siberia. Emergence of import ware speaks Kent trade in metal. Many regions of Central Asia and Western Siberia have no fields of copper ore. But needs for metal forced the population to get without ore areas it on the party. Huge stocks of copper ores of the Central Kazakhstan allowed begazy-dandybay miners and metallurgists to make a large amount of metal. Control over production and distribution of metal was carried out by leaders of the associations living in the mountains Kent, Bugula, Kyzylaray and other mountainous oases. Settlements Kent, Buguly-2, Shortandybulak were at the same time rates of leaders and shopping centers. Along with numerous cattle, trade in metal served as means of enrichment of ruling clans. Not casually Kent, Shortandybulak, Buguly-2, as well as monuments of the Atasui residential district (Myrzhik, Akmustaf, Sangyru-3) and Ulytau mountains — the richest by quantity of finds. On small settlements where ordinary shepherds lived, metal products meet seldom, there is no carved bone and import ceramics. On the contrary, on settlements of city value there is a lot of metal, a carved bone, there is an imported ware. And near these city centers there were tombs of ruling elite — mausoleums. Rich clans provided demand for luxury goods and prestige in the form of a carved bone and subjects from pyrophyllite.

Thus, a number of arguments allows to assume the city status of Kent that is one of conditions and signs of emergence of a civilization. Therefore, the civilization and statehood in Kazakhstan arise at a turn of the II-I millennium BC.

Emergence of the city centers in Saryarka became possible thanks to effective cattle breeding of distant-pasture type and mass, commodity production of metal.

Begazy-dandybay society consisted of large associations of tribes with strong leaders in head and was at a stage of formation of statehood. Settlements in the rank of the city — Kent, Buguly-2, Shortandybulak were the economic, administrative, political and ideological centers of associations of chiefdom.

Three thousand years ago steppes of the Central Kazakhstan became the center of formation of an original and bright civilization.


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