Prehistoric Armenia

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The Armenian Highland shows traces of settlement from the Neolithic era. The Shulaveri-Shomu culture of the central Transcaucasus region is one of the earliest known prehistoric culture in the area, carbon-dated to roughly 6000 - 4000 BC. Another early culture in the area is the Kura-Araxes culture, assigned to the period of ca. 3300 - 2000 BC, succeeded by the Georgian Trialeti culture (ca. 3000 - 1500 BC).

Excavation campaigns[edit]

Revue archéologique issued a report by M. de Morgan, on his excavations, and says:

I have carefully explored the prehistoric necropoli of the mountains of Russian Armenia especially those situated in the forests of the Lelwar, near the well known copper mines in the countries of Akthala, Allahverdi, Tehamlouq, Privolnick, etc. By examining with care the neighborhood of the copper iron made its first appearance in these regions but my excavations proved bronze industry, I have discovered only tombs with iron weapons[1]

Bronze Age[edit]

The main object of early Assyrian incursions into Armenia was to obtain metals. The iron-working age followed that of bronze everywhere, opening a new epoch of human progress. Its influence is noticeable in Armenia, and the transition period is well marked. Tombs whose metal contents are all of bronze are of an older epoch. In most of the cemeteries explored, both bronze and iron furniture were found, indicating the gradual advance into the Iron Age.

Iron Age[edit]

The territory of the Armenian language appears to have been roughly coincidental with Hurrian and closely related Urartian (with Dark shading). The poorly known and presumably related non-IE Etio language was to its north. Many of these languages occupied partially or wholly the earlier territory of the Kuro-Araxes culture (light shading). The nearest IE neighbors of the Armenians were the Hittites (and related Luvians and Palaic-speaking populations) who were not closely related to Armenian. Assyrian and Gutian are non IE languages. Burials with wheeled vehicles have been uncovered at Trialeti and Lchashen. [2]


  1. ^ American Journal of Archaeology - Page 523 by Archaeological Institute of America
  2. ^ “Armenians” in Encyclopedia of Indo-European Culture or EIEC, edited by J. P. Mallory and Douglas Q. Adams, published in 1997 by Fitzroy Dearborn.

See also[edit]

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