Ar­chae­ol­o­gists lo­cate find spot of Scythian trea­sure dis­cov­ered over 130 years ago

Timeless Travels Magazine - - ARCHAEOLOGICAL NEWS -

More than 130 years ago in the area of to­day’s Wi­taszkowo (Lubusz province) a lo­cal farmer dis­cov­ered dozens of gold arte­facts dat­ing back to the 6th cen­tury BCE, and as­so­ci­ated with the pres­ence of the Scythi­ans. Un­til re­cently ar­chae­ol­o­gists were un­able to de­ter­mine the pre­cise lo­ca­tion of the dis­cov­ery.

The trea­sure weigh­ing close to 5 kg in­cludes: a shield-shaped or­na­ment, a pen­dant, gory­tos (bow and arrow case) fit­ting in the shape of a fish dec­o­rated with hunt­ing scenes, aci­naces (Scythian short sword), dag­ger and scab­bard fit­tings. Cur­rently, the ma­jor­ity of the items are in the Ber­lin col­lec­tion An­tiken­samm­lung. Sci­en­tists as­sumed that the items be­longed to one of the Scythian lead­ers, killed while fight­ing the lo­cal peo­ple of the Lusa­tian cul­ture.

Pol­ish ar­chae­ol­o­gists have been un­suc­cess­fully search­ing for the place where the trea­sure was dis­cov­ered since the end of World War II. By analysing archival doc­u­ments pre­served in Ber­lin mu­se­ums and field work, ar­chae­ol­o­gists iden­ti­fied the orig­i­nal place of the trea­sure dis­cov­ery on a farm field si­t­u­ated be­tween the present vil­lages of Wi­taszkowo and Kozów.

Dur­ing ex­ca­va­tions they dis­cov­ered a cer­e­mo­nial spring walled with stones, in which there were hun­dreds of so-called con­se­crated bowls with om­pha­los (con­vex “navel” at the bot­tom), mod­elled on the an­cient Greek rit­ual li­ba­tion ves­sels. This rit­ual in­volved pour­ing valu­able flu­ids as sac­ri­fice for the deities. In Poland, finds of this type are known only as fu­ner­ary items. In the same place, ar­chae­ol­o­gists dis­cov­ered unique glass beads, prob­a­bly orig­i­nat­ing from the steppes on the Black Sea. The area near the spring was cov­ered with paving stones and a burnt area. There are also re­mains of a wooden bridge lead­ing from the vast hearth to the spring.

Me­tal­lo­graphic anal­y­sis of gold ob­jects proved that they had never been used, but showed signs of fire. This showed that it was likely to have been used to be a place of wor­ship of wa­ter deities.

Read more at Past Hori­zons

Cer­e­mo­nial spring dis­cov­ered dur­ing the ex­ca­va­tions

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