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Caucasian and Anatolian Bronze Age Cultures

Giorgi Leon Kavtaradze

 

 

Caucasian bronzeThe Caucasus and Anatolia, the eastern and southern parts of the common Circumpontic zone, i.e. territories around the Black Sea, were and are important as «bridges» connecting the Near East and Europe. This has determinated the common nature of the distinguishing features of the development of both above regions. Their historical, cultural, social and economical development is characterized by their intermediate position in Near Eastern and European evolutional models. In Anatolia and the Caucasus we have confirmations of the existence of «symbiotic cultures» which are based not only on the the Near Eastern, but also on European traditions. E.g. the Kurgan cultures of the Caucasus and the culture of the «Royal tombs» of Anatolia.

The Caucasus and Anatolia have much in common with regard to the regional diversity of their topographic, climatic peculiarities and special richness in metal ore deposits. The detached character of separate parts of both regions created good conditions for the co­existence of the populations of quite different nature.

The Caucasus, like Anatolia, was characterized by the same «Anatolian model» of the formation of a class society with the slow rate of its development and low productivity in agriculture; the economical differentiation and development of the crafts were stimulated in both areas by the neighbouring, Syro­Mesopotamian, civilizations. At the same time, a number of distinctive features have caused the emergence of a class society and the formation of statehood in Anatolia much earlier than in the Caucasus ­ i.e. in the late 3rd­ early 2nd millennia B.C.

This qualitative leap required many variables to combine and interact, but in Central Anatolia warlike conditions were the major means of achieving a state level of social organization for competing chiefdoms. It was pointed out that the pre­Hittite communities in Central Anatolia was composed of a variety of ethnic groups which existed together in a «symbiotic» relationship.

Those warlike conditions had been ultimately the consequence of the infiltration of several streams of the new population into Anatolia in the Early Bronze Age, particularly into its central part. Their origin or subsequent development was connected with the Caucasus or with the regions adjacent to it.

 

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