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A tumulus (plural tumuli) is a mound of earth and stone raised over a grave or graves. Tumuli are also known as barrows, burial mounds, Hügelgrab or kurgans, and can be found throughout much of the world. A tumulus composed largely or entirely of stones is usually referred to as a cairn.

The method of inhumation may involve a dolmen, a cist, a mortuary enclosure, a mortuary house or a chamber tomb. Examples of barrows include Duggleby Howemarker and Maeshowemarker.

The word is Latin for 'mound' or 'small hill', from the PIE root *teuh2- with extended zero grade *tum-, 'to bulge, swell' also found in tumor, thumb, thigh and thousand.

"Tumulus" can also refer to a formation caused by the uplift of lava on a pahoehoe flow field. The lava pushes up against the recently solidified surface creating tumuli along the surface.

Tumulus burial accounts

The funeral of Patroclus is described in book 23 of the Iliad. Patroclus is burned on a pyre, and his bones are collected into a golden urn in two layers of fat. The barrow is built on the location of the pyre. Achilles then sponsors funeral games, consisting of a chariot race, boxing, wrestling, running, a duel between two champions to the first blood, discus throwing, archery and spear throwing.

Beowulf is taken to Hronesness, where he burned on a funeral pyre. During cremation, the Geats lament the death of their lord, a widow's lament being mentioned in particular, singing dirges as they circumambulate the barrow.Afterwards, a mound is built on top of a hill, overlooking the sea, and filled with treasure. A band of twelve of the best warriors ride around the barrow, singing dirges in praise of their lord.

Parallels have also been drawn to the account of Attila's burial in Jordanes' Getica. Jordanes tells that as Attila's body was lying in state, the best horsemen of the Huns circled it, as in circus games.

An Old Irish Life of Columcille reports that every funeral procession "halted at a mound called Eala, whereupon the corpse was laid, and the mourners marched thrice solemnly round the spot."

Types of barrows

Archaeologists often classify tumuli according to their location, form, and date of construction. See also mound and howe. Some British types are listed below:

  • Bank barrow
  • Bell barrow
  • Bowl barrow
  • D-shaped barrow, round barrow with a purposely flat edge at one side often defined by stone slabs
  • Fancy barrow, generic term for any Bronze Age barrows more elaborate than a simple hemispherical shape.
  • Long barrow
  • Oval barrow, Neolithic long barrow consisting of an elliptical, rather than rectangular or trapezoidal mound.
  • Platform barrow, The least common of the recognised types of round barrow, consisting of a flat, wide circular mound, which may be surrounded by a ditch. They occur widely across southern England with a marked concentration in East and West Sussex.
  • Pond barrow, a barrow consisting of a shallow circular depression, surrounded by a bank running around the rim of the depression. Bronze age
  • Ring barrow, a bank which encircles a number of burials.
  • Round barrow, a circular feature created by the Bronze Age peoples of Britain and also the later Romans, Vikings, and Saxons. Divided into subclasses such as saucer and bell barrow. The Six Hillsmarker are a rare Roman example.
  • Saucer barrow, circular Bronze Age barrow featuring a low, wide mound surrounded by a ditch which may be accompanied by an external bank.
  • Square barrow, burial site, usually of Iron Age date, consisting of a small, square, ditched enclosure surrounding a central burial, which may also have been covered by a mound


Excavation



Sites

Eastern Europe, Central Asia

The word kurgan is of Turkic origin borrowed from Russian language. In Ukraine and Russia, there are royal kurgans of Varangian chieftains, such as the Black Gravemarker in Ukrainian Chernihivmarker (excavated in the 19th century), Oleg's Grave in Russian Staraya Ladogamarker, and vast, intricate Rurik's Hill near Russian Rurikovo gorodischemarker. Other important kurgans are found in Ukraine and South Russia and are associated with much more ancient steppe peoples, notably the Scythians (e.g.,Chortomlyk, Pazyryk) and Proto-Indo-Europeans (e.g., Ipatovomarker) The steppe cultures found in Ukraine and South Russia naturally continue into Central Asia, in particular Kazakhstanmarker.

Bosnia and Herzegovina

More than 50 burial mounds were found in Kupres. Man from Kupres- the sceleton found in one of the tumuli is believed to be more than 3000 years old and it is kept in Gorica museum in Livno.

Bulgaria

Hundreds of Thracian burial mounds are found throughout Bulgaria, including the Kazanlakmarker and Sveshtarimarker tombs, UNESCOmarker World Heritage sites. Located near the ancient Thracian capital cities of Seuthopolismarker (of the Odrysian kingdom) and Daosdava or Helis (of the Getae), perhaps they represented royal burials. Other tombs contained offerings such as the Panagyurishte and Rogozen treasures.

Hungary

There are many tumuli in the Great Hungarian Plain, the highest is near of the settlement of Békésszentandrásmarker, in Békés countymarker. (see the picture of "Gödény-halom")

Serbia



Western and Central Europe

Austria



Belgium



Britain

In Britainmarker, barrows of a wide range of types were in widespread use for burying the dead from the late Neolithic until the end of the Bronze Age, 2900-800BC. Square barrows were occasionally used in the Iron Age (800BC-43AD) in the east of Englandmarker. The traditional round barrow experienced a brief resurgence following the Anglo-Saxon conquests, with the introduction of northern Germanic burial practices from continental Europe. These later barrows were often built near older Bronze Age barrows. They included a few instances of ship burial. Barrow burial fell out of use during the 7th century as a result of the spread of Christianity.Early scholarly investigation of tumuli and theorising as to their origins was undertaken from the 17th century by antiquaries, notably John Aubrey, and William Stukeley. During the 19th century in Englandmarker the excavation of tumuli was a popular pastime amongst the educated and wealthy upper classes, who became known as "barrow-diggers". This leisure activity played a key role in laying the foundations for the scientific study of the past in Britain but also resulted in untold damage to the sites.Notable British barrows include:-

Czech Republic

During the early Middle Ages, Slavic tribesmen inhabiting what is now the Czech Republic used to bury their dead under barrows. This practice has been widespread in southern and eastern Bohemia and some neighboring regions, like Upper Austria and Lusatia, which at that time have been also populated with Slavic people. However, there are no known Slavic barrows in central part of the country (around Praguemarker), neither they are found in Moravia. This has led some of the archaeologists to speculations about at least three distinct waves of Slavic settlers, which have colonized Czech lands separately from each other, each wave bringing its customs with it (including burial rituals).

At places where barrows have been constructed, they are usually found in groups (10 to 100 together), often forming several clearly distinct lines going from the west to the east. Only a few of them have been studied scientifically so far; in them, both burials by fire (with burnt ashes) and unburned skeletons have been found, even on the same site. It seems that builders of the barrows have at some time switched from burials by fire to burying of unburned corpses; however, the reason for such change is unknown. The barrows date too far back in history (700 AD to 800 AD) to contain any Christian influences - it is almost certain that all people buried in them were pagans.

As Czech barrows usually served for burials of poor villagers, only a few objects are found in them except for cheap pottery. Only one Slavic barrow is known to have contained gold.

Most of the Czech burial barrows have been damaged or destroyed by intense agriculture in the densely populated region. Those which remain are usually located in forests, especially at hilltops in remote places. Therefore there is no general knowledge about burial barrows in the Czech population.

The best Slavic barrow sites can be found near to Vitínmarker, a small village close to České Budějovicemarker. There are two groups of barrows close to Vitín, each containing about 80 barrows ordered in lines. Some of the barrows are as much as 2 meters high.

There are also some prehistoric burial barrows in Czech Republic, built by unknown people. Unlike Slavic barrows, they can be found all across the country, though they are scarce. Distinguishing them from Slavic ones is not an easy task for the unskilled eye.

Germany

Hügelgrab or Hügel-Grab ("Barrow", "burial mound" or "tumulus") - sites in Germany
Name Place Region Bundesland Type Date Era
Auleben(Auleben grave-hill field) Aulebenmarker Nordhausenmarker Thuringiamarker Grave-hill field ca. 1500 - 1200 BCE Bronze Age, Early Stone Age
Benther Berg(Benther hill) Badenstedt Region Hannover Lower Saxonymarker Hilly-grave ca. 1800 - 1100 BCE Nordic Old Bronze Age
Pöckinger Gemeindegebiet(Pöcking local community area) Pöckingmarker Munichmarker area Bavariamarker grave-hill field ca. 750 - 500 BCE Hallstatt Age
Kreuzlinger Forst/Mühltal Gautingmarker Munichmarker area Bavariamarker Hilly-grave ca. 2000 - 1500 BCE Bronze Age
Germanengrab (Germans Grave ) Itzehoemarker Kreis Steinburgmarker Schleswig-Holsteinmarker Hilly-grave ca. 1500 - 1300 BCE Bronze Age
Giesen Giesen Landkreis Hildesheimmarker Lower Saxonymarker Hilly-grave ca. 1600 - 1200 BCE Bronze Age
Glaubergmarker Glauburgmarker Wetteraukreismarker Hessemarker Kings graves 5. Century BCE Early Celtic Age
Grabhügelfeld von Bonstorf(Bonstorf Barrows) Bonstorf Landkreis Cellemarker Lower Saxonymarker grave-hill field ca. 1500 - 1200 BCE Bronze Age, Early Stone Age
Lahnberge Marburgmarker Landkreis Marburg-Biedenkopfmarker Hessemarker >200 Hilly-graves ca. 1600 - 5th Century BCE Middle Bronze Age (Hügelgräber Culture), Late Bronze Age (Urnfeld Culture), Iron Age (Hallstatt Culture)
Hohmichelemarker Hundersingen Landkreis Sigmaringenmarker Baden-Württembergmarker Kings graves ca. 600 - 450 BCE Hallstatt Age
Grave-hill of Hochdorf Hochdorf an der Enz Landkreis Ludwigsburgmarker Baden-Württembergmarker Hilly-grave 5. Century BCE Hallstatt Age
Grabauer Gräberfeldmarker Grabau marker Kreis Stormarnmarker Schleswig-Holsteinmarker 9 grave-hills 6500 - 5500 BCE Young Stone Age
Beckdorf Beckdorfmarker Landkreis Stademarker Lower Saxonymarker Hilly-grave
Heidelberg Wieramarker Schwalm-Eder-Kreismarker Hessemarker Hill-grave Bronze Age
Lehbühl Schlaitdorfmarker Landkreis Esslingenmarker Baden-Württembergmarker Hill-grave ca. 600 - 400 BCE Hallstatt Age
Willhofer Berg (Wilhof mountain) Willhofmarker Landkreis Schwandorfmarker Bavariamarker Hilly-grave ca. 1516 BCE Middle Bronze Age, early La Tene Age
Mellingstedt Lemsahl-Mellingstedt Wandsbekmarker Hamburgmarker Hilly-grave Bronze Age
Daxberg Daxberg Landkreis Aschaffenburgmarker Bavariamarker Hilly-grave field ca. 2000 - 800 BCE Iron Age
Daxberg Daxberg Landkreis Unterallgäumarker Bavariamarker Hilly-grave field 8. Century BCE Iron Age
Höltinghausen Höltinghausen Landkreis Cloppenburgmarker Lower Saxonymarker Hilly-grave field
Hohenfelde Hohenfelde marker Landkreis Bad Doberanmarker Mecklenburg-Vorpommernmarker 7 Hilly-graves ca. 1700 BCE Bronze Age
Plankenheide Nettetalmarker Kreis Viersenmarker North Rhine-Westphaliamarker Hill-grave
Kranzberger Forst Kranzbergmarker Landkreis Freisingmarker Bavariamarker 19 Hilly-graves Bronze Age
Neu Quitzenow Neu Quitzenowmarker Landkreis Güstrowmarker Mecklenburg-Vorpommernmarker 2 Hilly-graves ca. 1800 - 600 BCE
Maaschwitz Maaschwitzmarker Muldentalkreis Saxonymarker Hilly-graves
Königsgrab von Seddin Seddinmarker Landkreis Prignitzmarker Brandenburgmarker Kings graves 8. Century BCE Bronze Age
Pestruper Gräberfeld (Pestrup Grave fields) Wildeshausenmarker Landkreis Oldenburgmarker Lower Saxonymarker ~ 500 grave-hills ca. 900 - 200 BCE Bronze Age
Plaggenschale Plaggenschalemarker Landkreis Osnabrückmarker Lower Saxonymarker
Mansenberge Groß Berßenmarker Landkreis Emslandmarker Lower Saxonymarker Great stone grave 2000 BCE Megalith Culture
Magdalenenberg Villingenmarker Schwarzwald-Baar-Kreismarker Baden-Württembergmarker Kings grave ca. 616 BCE Hallstatt Age
Tumulus von Nennig Nennigmarker Landkreis Merzig-Wadernmarker Saarlandmarker Grave-hill Bronze Age
Wagengrab von Bell (Wagon grave of Bell) Bell marker Rhein-Hunsrück-Kreismarker Rhineland-Palatinatemarker Wagon-grave 500 BCE Hallstatt Age
Winckelbarg Landkreis Stademarker Lower Saxonymarker
Naturschutzgebiet Schweinert(Schweinert Nature reserve) Falkenbergmarker Landkreis Elbe-Elstermarker Brandenburgmarker The Great Hill-Grave Field of Middle Europe (642 Hills) ca. 1000 BCE
Breitenfeld Neuhausen ob Eckmarker Landkreis Tuttlingenmarker Baden-Württembergmarker 21 grave-hills ca. 700 BCE - 450 CE Hallstatt Age


Ireland

A tumulus can be found close to the Grianán of Aileachmarker in County Donegalmarker. It has been suggested by historians such as George Petrie, who surveyed the site in the early nineteenth century, that the tumulus may predate the ringfort of Aileach by many centuries possibly to the neolithic age. Stones surrounded it which were laid horizontally and converged towards the centre. In Petrie’s time, the mound had been excavated but nothing to explain its meaning was discovered. It was subsequently destroyed but its former position is marked by a heap of broken stones. Similar mounds can be found at The Hill of Taramarker and there are several prominent tumuli at Brú na Bóinnemarker in County Meath.

Italy

Some big tumulus tombs can be found especially in the Etruscan culture. Smaller barrows are dated to the Villanova period (9th - 8th century BC) but the biggest were used in the following centuries (from the 7th century afterwards) by the Etruscan aristocracy.
Tumulus at Outeiro de Gregos, Baião, Portugal (V or IV millennium BC)
The Etruscan tumuli were normally family tombs that were used for many generation of the same noble family, and the deceased were buried with many precious objects that had to be the "grave goods" or the furnishings for these "houses" in the Afterlife.Many tombs also hold paintings, that in many cases represent the funeral or scenes of real life.The most important graveyards (necropolises) with tumulus tombs are Veio, Cerveteri, Vetulonia, Populonia. Many isolated big barrows can be found in the whole Etruscan territory (mostly in Central Italy).

Portugal

One of the most dense manifestations of the megalithic phenomenon in Europe occurred in Portugal. In the north of Portugal there are more than 1000 late prehistoric barrows. They generally occur in clusters, forming a necropolis. The method of inhumation usually involves a dolmen. The tumulus, dated from c. 4450 to 1900 BC, are up to 3 meters high, with diameters from 6 to 30 meters. Most of them are mounds of earth and stones but the more recent ones are composed largely or entirely of stones (cairns). In Portugalmarker, barrows are called mamoas, from the Latin mammulas, given to them by the Romans because of their shape, similar to the breast of a woman.

Scandinavia

Burial mounds were in use until the 11th century in Scandinavia and figure heavily into Norse paganism. In their undamaged state they appear as small, man-made hillocks, though many examples have been damaged by ploughing or deliberately damaged so that little visible evidence remains.

By burning the deceased, it was believed that the person was transferred to Valhalla by the consuming force of the fire. The fire could reach temperatures of 1500 °C. The remains were covered with cobblestones and then a layer of gravel and sand and finally a thin layer of turf.

King Björn's barrow in Håga.
As the old Scandinavians worshiped their ancestors, the mounds were also places of worship. In Norse mythology, the draugr was an undead creature that haunted burial mounds. Of note is King Björn's barrow in Håga (Old Norse word: Haugr) near Uppsalamarker. This location has a very strong connection with Björn at Haugi. First, the Nordic Bronze Age barrow gave its name to the location Håga ("the barrow"), which became part of the cognomen of the king, at Haugi ("at the barrow"), and interestingly, the mound was later named after the king.

Αegean and Near East

India

The Ahom kingdom in medieval Assammarker built octagonal tumuli called Maidams for their kings and high officials. The kings were buried in a hillock at Charaideomarker in Sibsagar district of Assam, whereas other Maidams are found scattered more widely.

Macedonia

Some of the world's most prominent Tumuli, the Macedonian tombs and a cist-grave at Verginamarker, tomb of Philip II (359-336 B.C) of Macedonia and father of Alexander the Great (336-323). Speculation that the other grave found there is that of Alexander IV is controversial. His corpse was allegedly buried in Memphis during the turmoil of the Diadochi after his death in 323 BC .

Aigai is the ancient capital of Macedon , homeland of Phillip II. During the 19th century, the tomb of Philip II was discovered in Vergina, northern Greece. The Monumental Palace is lavishly decorated with painted stuccoes and mosaics accompanying a burial ground with as many as 300 tumuli. Some tumuli date from the 11th century B.C. However, the most renowned is the royal tomb of Philip II, father of Alexander the Great, who managed to unite by force many Greek cities, architect of the Hellenistic expansion.

This city lies on the northern slopes of the Pierian Mountains; Aigai has been identified as the capital of the Kingdom of Lower Macedonia . The site was inhabited continuously form the Bronze Age. By the 11th – 8th century BC it was a densely populated and rich centre. The 7th-6th centuries BC saw the premium point of its prosperity and popularity; this continued into the 5th century BC. Traditional sanctuaries were established, as were the seats of the Macedonian Kings. Royal tombs were known in antiquity to be opulent.
Excavations were first undertaken at this site by 19th century. Archaeologists L. Heuzy of France and K. Rhomaios of Greece began but were stalled by the First and Second World Wars and excavations were not resumed until approximately 1952 . In the 1960s M. Andronicos was director of the excavations and the cemetery of the tumuli was investigated. The Palace of Philip II was excavated by a team from Thessaloniki University along with part of the necropolis being investigated by the Ministry of Culture. 1977 was the pivotal date that M. Andronicos brought to the attention of the world, the royal tombs in the Great Tumulus of Vergina, (ΜεγάΛα) tomb. Unfortunately, the townspeople of Vergina have put a halt to any more excavations for the time being, under the auspices of preserving their beautiful surroundings and heritage .

Anatolia

On the Anatolian peninsula, there are several sites where one can find the biggest specimens of these artificial mounds throughout the world. Three of these sites are especially important. Bin Tepeler (and other Lydian mounds of the Aegean inland), Phrygian mounds in Gordiummarker (Central Anatolia), and the famous Commagene tumulus on the Mount Nemrutmarker (Southeastern Anatolia).

This is the most important of the enumerated sites with the number of specimens it has and with the dimensions of certain among them. It is in the Aegeanmarker inland of Turkey. The site is called "Bin Tepeler" (a thousand mounds in Turkish) and it is in the northwest of Salihlimarker district of Manisamarker province. The site is very close to the southern shoreline of Lake Marmara (Lake Gyges or Gygaea). Bin Tepeler is a Lydian necropolis which dates back to 7th and 6th centuries B.C. These mounds are called "the pyramids of Anatolia" as there is even a giant specimen among them which attains 355 meters in diameter, 1115 meters in perimeter and 69 meters of height. According to the accounts drawn up by Herodotus, this giant tumulus belongs to the famous Lydian King Alyattes II who ruled between 619–560 B.C. There is also another mound belonging to King Gyges. The Gyges mound was excavated but the burial chamber hasn't been found yet. In this site, there are 75 tumuli dating back to Lydian period which belong to the nobility. A large number of smaller artificial mounds can also be observed in the site. There are other Lydian tumuli sites around Eşmemarker district of Uşakmarker province. Certain mounds in these sites had been plundered by raiders in the late 1960s and the Lydian treasures found in their burial chambers had been smuggled to United States which later had to cede them to Turkish authorities after a series of negotiations. These artifacts are now exhibited in the Archaeological Museum of Uşak.

Gordiummarker is the capital of the Phrygian Kingdom. Its ruins are in the immediate vicinity of Polatlımarker district of the Turkish capital Ankaramarker. In this site, there are approximately 80-90 tumuli which date back to Phrygian, Persian and Hellenistic periods. Only 35 tumuli were excavated so far. The mounds had been built between 8th century B.C. and 3rd or 2nd century B.C. The biggest tumulus in the site is believed to belong to the famous Phrygian King Midas. This mound had been excavated in 1957 and several bronze artifacts were collected from the wooden burial chamber. Among these artifacts, "omphalos bowls" and famous "Phrygian fibulae" (hooked needles which were used by the Phryigians to bond the clothes they wore) are especially important.

The Mount Nemrutmarker is 86 km in the east of Adıyamanmarker province of Turkeymarker. It is very close to Kahtamarker district of the same province. The mountain has, at its peak, 3050 meters of height above the sea level. A tumulus which dates back to the 1st century B.C. is situated at the peak of the mountain. This artificial mound has 150 meters of diameter and a height of 50 meters which was originally 55 meters. It belongs to the Commagene King Antiochus I Theos of Commagene who ruled between 69–40 B.C. The most interesting thing about the tumulus is that it is made of broken stone pieces which renders the excavation attempts almost impossible. The tumulus is surrounded by ceremonial terraces in the east, west and north. The east and west terraces have tremendous statues (reaching 8 to 10 meters of height) and bas reliefs of gods and goddesses from the Commagene pantheon where divine figures used to embody the Persian and Roman perceptions together.

Levant

Jerusalem Tumulus #2 in 2004.
A tumulus forms the center of the ancient megalithic structure of Rujm el-Hirimarker in the Golan Heightsmarker. Rujm in Arabic can mean tumulus, cairn or stone heap. Near the western city limits of modern Jerusalemmarker, 19 tumuli have been documented (Amiran, 1958). Though first noticed in the 1870s by early surveyors, the first one to be formally documented was Tumulus #2 in 1923 by William Foxwell Albright, and the most recent one (Tumulus #4) was excavated by Gabriel Barkay in 1983. Since 21 kings reigned in Jerusalemmarker during the Israelite monarchy from David to Zedekiah (who was conquered and humiliated by the Chaldean king, Nebuchadnezzar), it is not unreasonable to suspect that these mounds were the locations of ceremonies to mourn/honor them after they had already received proper burial in the royal tombs (probably located in the heart of the city where they could be continuously guarded). See 2 Chronicles 16:14, 21:19 (which states that King Jehoram was not given this honor), 32:33, the book of Jeremiah 34:5 (a conditional promise for Zedekiah that he did not earn), and Biblical archaeology. Gabriel Barkay popularized this theory after studying tumuli near Salamis in Cyprusmarker.

  • More than half of these ancient Israeli structures have now been threatened or obliterated by modern construction projects, including Tumulus #4, which was excavated hastily in a salvage operation. The most noteworthy finds from this dig were two LMLK seal impressions and two other handles with associated Concentric Circle incisions, all of which suggests this tumulus belonged to either King Hezekiah (Barkay, 2003, p. 68) or his son Manasseh (Grena, 2004, p. 326).


  • When comparing the number of these tumuli to the total number of Israelite kings (northern and southern), note that Saul never ruled in Jerusalemmarker, and Athaliah was never crowned. She took the throne by force (2Kings 11:1-3), and would certainly not have been honored with a tumulus ceremony following her brutal assassination.


  • The northern kings did not reign over the southern kingdom, and they would certainly not have been honored with a tumulus ceremony in Jerusalemmarker; if any ceremonies were held for them, they would have transpired in the north (near Bethel, Tirzah, or Samariamarker).


  • The association of these tumuli with the Judean kings who ruled Jerusalemmarker does not substantiate Biblical history since it is mere speculation. No inscriptions naming any specific Judean king have been excavated from a tumulus.


East Asia

China

Japan

In Japanmarker, powerful leaders built tumuli known as kofun. The Kofun period of Japanese history takes its name from these burial mounds. The largest is over 400 meters in length. In addition to other shapes, kofun include a keyhole shape.

Korea

Burial mounds of the Silla kings in Korea.
The first burial mounds in Korea were dolmens which contained the material culture of the first millennium CE, such as bronze-ware, pottery, and other symbols of the elite of society.

The most famous tumulii in Korea, dating around 300 AD, are those left behind by the Korean Baekje, Goguryeo(Kogyuro/Koguryo), Silla, and Gaya states and are clustered around ancient capital cities in modern-day Pyongyangmarker, Seoulmarker, Ji'an, and Gwangjumarker. The Goguryeo tombs, shaped like pyramids, are famous for the well-preserved wall murals like the ones at Anak Tomb No.3 which depict the culture and artistry of the people. The base of the tomb of King Gwanggaeto is 85 meters on each side, half of the size of the Great Pyramids.[45435] Goguryeo Silla tombs are most noted for the fabulous offerings that have been excavated such as delicate golden crowns and glassware and beads that probably made their way to Korea via the Silk Road.

Many indigenous Korean artifacts and culture were transmitted to the tomb builders of early Japan, such as horsetrappings, bronze mirrors, paintings and iron-ware.

* see also Cheonmachongmarker, the Heavenly Horse Tomb


North America

Burial mound of a Maritime Archaic boy at L'Anse Amour, Newfoundland.

Canada

Human settlement in L'anse Amourmarker dates back at least 7,500 years as evidenced by the burial mound of a Maritime Archaic boy. His body was wrapped in a shroud of bark or hide and placed face down with his head pointed to the west. The site was first excavated in the 1970s.

The Augustine Mound is an important Mi'kmaq burial site in New Brunswick.

United States



Mound building was a central feature of the public architecture of many Native American cultures from Chile to Minnesota. Thousands of mounds in the USA have been destroyed as a result of farming, pot-hunting, amateur and professional archaeology, road-building and construction. Surviving mounds are still found in river valleys, especially along the Mississippi, Tennessee and Ohio Rivers.Mounds were used for burial, to support residential and religious structures, to represent a shared cosmology, and to unite and demarcate community. Common forms include conical mounds, ridge-top mounds, platform mounds, and animal effigy mounds, but there are many variations. Mound building in the USA is believed to date back to at least 3400 BC in the Southeast (see Watson Brake). The Adena and the Mississippian cultures are principally known for their mounds, as is the Hopewell tradition. The largest mound site north of Mexicomarker is Cahokiamarker, a vast World Heritage Site located just east of St. Louis, Missouri. The largest conical burial mound in the United States is the Grave Creek Moundmarker in Moundsville, West Virginiamarker.

References

  1. Calvert Watkins, American Heritage Dictionary of Indo-European Roots, 2000, p. 92.
  2. Frederick Klaeber, Attila's and Beowulf's funeral, PMLA (1927); Martin Puhvel, The Ride around Beowulf's Barrow, Folklore (1983).
  3. http://www.kosovo.net/crucified/cr_heritage.html
  • Knight, Peter, Ancient Stones of Dorset, 1996.
  • Grinsell, L.V., 1936, The Ancient Burial-mounds of England. London: Methuen.


See also



External links




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