RITUAL AND CEREMONIAL DISMEMBERING BONES IN A BURIALS IN BRONZE AND IRON CENTURIES FROM ARMENIAN PLATEAU
Apstrakt: In this article, we would like to highlight the religious and funerary practices in the Armenian Plateau. Since the first discovered in the XIV century, the ossuaries from Lori Berd have attracted attention as possible archaeological evidence of ancient Zoroastrian burial practice. The practice involved exposing cadavers to birds before the surviving remains were gathered for deposition in burials. Ritual and ceremonial dismembering and burning, emerging in Lori Berd, focuses on honor and respect for the dead. Archaeologists discovered three detached human skulls from Shirakavan site. Three the detached human skulls are not complete and no longer have their mandibles. Since the detached skulls belong to young female and one male adult, the assumption is that these were human sacrifices rather than venerated ancestors. The Lori Berd and Shirakavan sites contained the remains of two individual with cuts indicative of scalping. Several indications of violence were observed in the materials under study. The examination of the human remains revealed that the paleopathologies encountered infectious diseases, dental diseases, etc. Among the individuals from the Shirakavan, there is a clear indication that an increased usage of muscles would occur when spears are thrown at a downward angle and the usage of muscles is consistent with the launching of spears. The clearly expressed marker of a horse rider’s pathological complex is indicated in some male burials in Armenian Plateau.
Ključne reči: Armenia, Iron Ages, taphonomic, dismembering bones, cremation, the detached human skulls, scalping, paleoanthropology, stress markers