The Population of the Forest-Steppe Zone of Ukraine During the Scythian Time

Keywords: Scythian time, forest-steppe zone of Ukraine, anthropology

Abstract

The issue on the composition of the forest-steppe population of Ukraine of the Scythian time was considered by historians, archaeologists, linguists and anthropologists. Recently, the database on the anthropology of the steppe Scythia population has been expanded. It allowed researchers to take a fresh look at both the population of the steppe and forest-steppe zones of Ukraine of the mentioned period.

In the article, craniological materials of the forest-steppe and steppe series were considered in a circle of groups representing the population of the Baltic region, Central and Southern Europe. Statistical processing of material was performed using the Systat software package.

According to the analysis, the anthropological composition of the Ukrainian forest-steppe zone population of the Scythian time was not homogeneous. However, the dominant morphological component is clearly distinguished. This is a dolichocran morphological type with a long, narrow skull, average face sizes, which is sharply profiled in a horizontal plane. Certain morphological type determines average characteristics of most of the summarized series of male skulls.

The population of the forest-steppe and steppe zones of Ukraine is presented by two different anthropological massifs whose boundaries do not intersect. The forest-steppe population cannot be considered as a local version of the Scythian anthropological massif.

The population of the above mentioned area was formed on a different morphological basis. The main massif of the population of the Ukrainian forest-steppe clearly demonstrates the north-western direction of anthropological ties. Its anthropological type was formed on the basis of populations that have genetic origins in the Corded Ware circle cultures. The Corded Ware culture population was not homogeneous. Namely, that part of the Corded people, on the basis of which a morphological type was formed, which in a historical perspective became dominant among the Balts in the Iron Age.

Most of the series of the forest-steppe zone of the Scythian time are morphologically and statistically close to the populations of the Eastern Baltic Iron Age. However, the population that comes from groups that are associated with the Iranian-speaking world is also fixed.

For analysis, there were used only materials from burials according to the ritual of inhumation. Cremation does not leave materials for the work of researchers who are engaged in ethnic anthropology. Consequently, some of the information on the region population is closed. Theoretically, the population of the forest-steppe zone of Ukraine of the Scythian time could be more polymorphic.

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2020-09-30
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