In Search of the Origins of the Slavs. To the 100th Anniversary of the Birth of Ye. V. Maksymov

Keywords: Yevhen Volodymyrovych Maksymov, Zarubyntsi culture, La Tène culture, Kyiv culture, ethnogenesis of the Slavs, Proto-Slavic.

Abstract

On January 28, 2021 there was the 100th anniversary of the birth of, Yevhen Volodymyrovych Maksymov, the famous Ukrainian archaeologist, researcher of the problems of the Slavs’ origin, Doctor of Historical Sciences, professor, laureate of the State Prize of Ukraine in the field of science and technology (1991).

In 1949 Ye. V. Maksymov graduated from the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv. From 1949 to 1998 he worked at the Institute of Archaeology of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, in the Department of Early Slavic Archaeology from the day of its creation in 1974. In 1968 he defended his Ph.D. thesis, in 1983 he defended his doctoral dissertation.

Ye. V. Maksymov studied archaeological cultures of the Ukrainian Forest-Steppe in the 1st millennium BC — 1st millennium AD. He conducted excavations and introduced into scientific circulation the materials of Zarubyntsi culture sites: the settlements of Pylypenkova Hora, Babyna Hora, Monastyrok, the burial grounds of Pyrohiv, Kozarovychi, Didiv Shpil and others.

In the scientific heritage of Ye. V. Maksymov there are more than 200 publications. The leading place is occupied by research related to Zarubyntsi culture — the problem of its formation, chronology, analysis of the main categories of material and their changes over time under the influence of internal and external factors.

Ye. V. Maksymov was the first among the researchers to prove that the Zarubyntsi culture is not a modification of any one culture — local or transferred by migrants from Central Europe. Zarubyntsi culture is a new historical formation. It arose as a result of the migrants’ cultural traditions integration and the local population. From the Zarubyntsi culture migrants occurred elements of the La Tène culture. Ye. V. Maksymov first used fragments of ancient amphorae from Zarubyntsi sites of the Middle Dnieper as chronological benchmarks and determined that the early date of the culture is the end of the 3rd century BC or the boundary of the 3rd /2nd century BC.

Sites of the late period allowed Ye. V. Maksymov to understand the historical fate of the Zarubyntsi culture. They became the basis of the Kyiv culture, which demonstrates the genetic relationship to the cultures of the Slavs of the 6th—7th centuries Ye. V. Maksymov suggested that the bearers of the Zarubyntsi culture were close to the Proto-Slavs and believed that this culture played a significant role in the Slavs’ ethnogenesis.

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2021-06-14
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