The “ancestors” of the Mediterranean mosaic found in Turkey

A collection of over 3,000 stones was excavated from the site of the Hittite temple in the 15th century BC, 700 years before the earliest known mosaic of ancient Greece.

The discovery of 3,500-year-old cobblestones, known as the “ancestors” of the Mediterranean mosaic, provides details that shed light on the daily lives of the mysterious Hittites of the Bronze Age.

A collection of over 3,000 stones arranged in triangles and curves in natural tones of beige, red and black, excavated at the site of the Hittite temple in the 15th century BC, 700 years ago, the oldest known mosaic of the Ancient Greece. it was done.

“Clearly sophisticated is the ancestor of the classic mosaic era. It’s kind of a first attempt to do it, ”said Anacleto D ‘, drilling manager at Usakli Hoyuk near Yozgat in central Turkey. said Agostino.

Three hours from the Turkish capital Ankara, which was first located in 2018, Turkish and Italian archaeologists used shovels and brushes to reach the city of Hittite, one of the most powerful kingdoms in the world. ancient Anatolia. Learn more about.

“For the first time, people felt the need to create geometric patterns and do something different from just a sidewalk,” says Dagostino.

“Maybe we are dealing with a genius? Maybe not. Probably the man who said “Build a floor for me” and he’s doing something weird. Did you choose? “

The discovery took place across Mount Kerkenes, and the mosaic-placed temple was dedicated to the Hittite-worshiped storm god Teshub, the equivalent of the ancient Greek Zeus.

“Maybe the priests here were looking at pictures of Mount Kerkenes for some ceremonies and so on,” Dagostino adds.

Archaeologists in Turkey and Italy use shovels and brushes to learn more about the mighty Hittite kingdom.

A treasure from the lost city?

This week, archaeologists uncovered pottery and palace ruins, supporting the theory that Usakuri Hoyuk may in fact be the lost city of Zipperlanda.

The exact location of Zipperlanda, an important place of worship for the storm god and often mentioned on Hittite tablets, remains a mystery.

“Researchers agree that Usakuri Hoyuk is one of the two most likely locations, as the palace’s discovery remains alongside magnificent pottery and glassware. Is growing, ”explains Dagostino.

“All we need is the ultimate proof: a tablet with the name of the city on it. “

Towards the end of the Bronze Age, the treasures of Usakuri Hoyuk, which were brought from Lebanon by cedars to build temples and palaces, were swallowed up like any other Hittite world.

Archaeological director Anacleto Dagostino describes this find as a

Archaeological director Anacleto Dagostino describes this find as an “ancestor of the classical mosaic era”.

The reason is still unknown.

However, some believe this is due to climate change with social unrest.

“Spiritual connection”

Almost 3000 years after their disappearance, the Hittites continue to live in the Turkish imagination.

The Hittite figure representing the sun is a symbol of Ankara. And in the 1930s, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk, the founder of the modern Turkish Republic, introduced the Turks as direct descendants of the Hittites.

“I don’t know if we can find a connection between the ancient Hittites and the people who live here now. After centuries and thousands of years, people have moved from one place to another, ”said Dagostino. Said.

“But I would like to imagine that there is some kind of spiritual connection.”

To respect this link, the excavation team recreated the Hittite culinary tradition and tried out ancient ceramic recipes made in the same way as at the time, using the same techniques and the same clay.

  • The mosaic is a natural shade of beige, red and black, arranged in triangles and curves

    The mosaic is a natural shade of beige, red and black, arranged in triangles and curves.

  • The temple at the site in central Turkey was dedicated to the storm god Teshub

    The temple at the site in central Turkey was dedicated to the storm god Teshub.

“We used clay found in the site village to recreate Hittite pottery. We baked dates and bread like the Hittites once ate, ”said Valen, co-director of the excavation. says Tina Orsi.

“It was really good.”


The ancient Hittite cuneiform will soon be available online


© 2021 AFP

Quote: The “ancestors” of the Mediterranean mosaic found in Turkey (September 26, 2021) are from https://phys.org/news/2021-09-ancestor-mediterranean-mosaics-turkey.html September 2021 Obtained on September 26

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