Scythian Bullet-Type Bronze Arrowheads

  • Oleksandr D. Mogylov Institute of Archaeology, the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine
Keywords: arrowheads, armor, military science, settlement, burial, Scythian time.

Abstract

The bronze bullet arrowhead accompanied by materials of an early Scythian time during the research of the internal rampart of the Motronyn hillfort in a Tiasmyn River basin, in 2017 was found. It complemented a small series of the similar items that originate from the Black Sea region. Approximately thirty similar finds are known today. The nearest analogies were found on the settlements of Zhabotyn and Ivanivka, on the South of Dnieper River Right-bank Forest-steppe, in the Tiasmyn River basin. A similar object occured near the Lykhachivka village in Povorsklia. Such types of arrowhead series are known from the territory of the Northern Caucasus: from the Zheleznodorozhny and Komarovsky burial grounds, from the Krasnoe Znamya, Mineralnye Wody and Bazhigan archaeological sites. They were found in Pre-Kelermes quiver set in a burial at Amasya in Turkey, and probably mark the Scythian campaigns to Anterior Asia. Analogies are known at the Sauromats of the Volga and the Urals, the Saks of Central Asia, the tribes of the Scythian time of Northern Kazakhstan and Tuva.

The arrowheads from the Black Sea region are dated by the early Scythian time (7th — the first half of the 6th century BCE). Most of them are known in the archaeological sites of the Kelermes stage from the Komarovsky, Zheleznodorozhny, Mineralovodsky burial grounds. The burial near Amasya specifies on their existence on the Pre-Kelermes stage. The bullet arrowheads had a less area of contact with the target surface and could have a larger penetration. They could be used for fights against warriors dressed in defensive armour. As such finds are widespread on the vast spaces of Eurasia, it is possible to suppose the independent origin of similar artefacts in different regions. Probably, the bone arrowheads of a similar shape served as the prototypes, and the process of transformation passed within the framework of the replacement process of bone to a bronze and iron ones, well-known in the Early Iron Age.

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2018-06-01
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