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20 December 2017
Ancient settlement unearthed near Istanbul's oldest burial site

The metro excavation site located in Istanbul's Beşiktaş district, where 3,500-year-old cairn-type burials were discovered, is most likely home to an ancient settlement, according to the head of Istanbul's Archaeological Museums.
     Excavation teams had discovered 35 ancient 'kurgan-type' graves during construction works as part of an extension to Istanbul's metro line. Kurgans are a type of burial place usually characterized by earth and stones heaped over a burial chamber. They date back from the Bronze Age, and have been found from the Altai Mountains to the Caucasus, Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria. Kurgans were used in the Ukrainian and Russian steppes, and their use spread with further European migrations in the 3rd millennium BCE.
     Istanbul Archaeology Museum Director Zeynep Kızıltan said that they believe there had been a settlement near the tombs but they are still trying to figure out the exact location. She noted that they will continue excavations in an area covering about 1,000 square meters.
     The cairn-type sepulchers date back to the Early Bronze Age, Kızıltan  said, adding that the discovery was groundbreaking as artifacts preceding the Byzantine Empire hadn't been found near Beşiktaş before.

Edited from Daily Sabah (18 December 2017)

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