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- nomadic people that formed a confederacy in what is today, Mongolia.
- han dynasty was in conflict with Xiongnu throughout their existence
Motun's message to the han court
we have conquered everybody else and all are now Xiongnu
ushers in period of tension between han's and xiongnu - back and forth war between both sides despite hans paying yearly tribute to the xiongnu
- travels to siberia northern mongolia in search of xiongnu material trace
- identifies large square tombs belonging to ancient xiongnu
- largest ramped tomb in mongolia
xiongnu ring tombs
- shaft graves
- laid above shafts oriented north to south
monuments that preceded xiongnu
- khirigsuurs late bronze age
- slab burials
Baga Gazaryn Chuluu (BGC)
- series of cliffs and ridges that rise out of desert
- dominated by deep central valley
- covers over 200 sqkm
- *got permits
- *found satellite images
- *found ceramic sherds.
type of survey used during BGC
- Intensive and extensive Pedestrian survey
- divided into km sq grid that was
- each grid given a number
- each person walked in transects
started in 2003 - end 2006
*beyond bgc in the flat nothings - transects were spread further apart
*aerial photography - not useful off the bat only for mapping purposes
what constitutes a site? (BGC)
how many objects constitute a site
when do we stop transects?
- more than 3 pieces of something
- yelling out a hit
these questions pose difficulties that may affect the resolution of data despite setting guidelines
problems with grid and research intervals at BGC
- -sites overlapping
- -grids divided due to time lapses
- -sites with different names instead of one analytical unit
- -categories and names were assigned and everyone had different interpretations of their meaning
- -various groups from different backgrounds had different expectations
- -active desicration. all disturbed.
so data base needed refinement!!!!
how did the BGC study problems get refined?
when are slab burials slab burials
- qualitative survey done - adjustment for being too sciency
- -not on a grid
- -visited every site labeled a slab burial
- -what are attributes to these sites
- slab burial definition then emerged
during docs qualitative survey of slab burials
- found that slab burials were only visible looking east
- bronze age landscape stood out
- what archeaology is primarily known for
- survey and spatial data serves to inform what and where to excavate
- 2 kinds: horizontal & vertical
sensory experiences to view and interpret an archaeological site/landscape. How you feel in that setting
process of refilling a site
a structure including a central mound and a round or square surrounding frame
- -dated to bronze age
- -functions as funerary ceremonies
Khirigsuurs and Slab Burials
- -Khirigsuurs and slab burials are found
- individually or in small clusters throughout the research area.
- -Neither monument type exhibits
- extensive or diverse mortuary assemblages. The investment was in the monument itself
- -There is a spatial affinity between
- khirigsuurs and slab burials with the latter
- invariably being found in association with khirigsuurs. (has an eastern association)
- - Both monument types have
- significant visual impact upon the landscape.
Xiongnu Ring Tombs characteristics
- - Occur in small clusters or larger
- - Are not visually compelling, in
- fact, they are hardly visible at all. tucked away
- primarily along research edges.
-investment not made into monuments itself, but rather burial assemblages such as beads
- standardized tombs - looked the same, burials the same, north south direction, same objects
Xiongnu tombs Compared to Monuments from
Neolithic & Bronze Age Sites vs Xiongnu Sites
xiongnu was completely opposite of everything that came before
before xiongnu period, people could express themselves individually, but as soon as xiongnu emerged everyhting is the same. Suggests possible formation of a xiongnu central authority by adoption or coercion. It was either xiongnu or nothing.
Xiongnu ring tombs lack a visual component. tucked away - hardly visible
Xiongnu tombs exhibit greater emphasis and standardization in the inclusion of faunal remains and pastoral resources.
In spite of comprehensive pillaging activities significant amounts of material evidence are still recoverable in Xiongnu assemblages
Xiongnu Faunal Assemblages
pastoral subsistence was important to xiongnu. therefore, burying faunal remains served as a ritualistic purpose perhaps
1 xiongnu cemetary with 40 or so burials that was extremely preserved.
mom with neonate buried at foot
types of age
- social age - role or society given
- chronological age - actual age
- biolgical age - skeletal changes
Xiongnu paid close attention to social age