20 Centuries Old: Discovery of Golden Jewelry from a “Mysterious” Culture in Kazakhstan

Archaeologists have discovered golden jewelry, arrowheads, and a large bronze mirror in the Turkestan region of southern Kazakhstan, estimating their age to be around 2000 years.


Experts believe these artifacts were made during the reign of the Kangju state, which ruled the region from the 5th century BC to the 4th century AD, but little is known about it, according to Live Science.

It turns out that the bronze mirror, with its circular shape, octagonal design on the back, and central hole for a string, came from China, bearing the pattern of the Han dynasty, which ruled from 206 BC to 220 AD.

These types of mirrors were highly valued throughout Eurasia, and similar mirrors have been found in Afghanistan and the southern Urals. The presence of the mirror at the burial site suggests that the person buried with it was wealthy and influential.

A team consisting of members from the Uzbekali Janibekov University in Kazakhstan and local government archaeologists made the recent discoveries in the Ordabassinsky area of Turkestan.

In addition to the bronze mirror, the collection of artifacts included various items such as a Roman-style brooch called a fibula, beads of different sizes, a pottery jug, a shoe, a belt buckle, and an arrowhead designed for bird hunting. Additionally, there were two golden earrings believed to be from the 1st century BC.

The scientists said the decorated earrings were made of a colorful alloy called “polychrome gold” and adorned with turquoise and ruby. The earrings were crescent-shaped symbolizing the moon, with additional decorations resembling grape clusters, intended to capture and reflect sunlight.

Alexander Podushkin, the mission leader and archaeologist at Uzbekali Janibekov University, explained that the Kangju state was an alliance of various peoples, including nomadic tribes like the Sarmatians, Xiongnu, and possibly the Scythians known as Saka.

Podushkin mentioned that the artifacts would soon be displayed at the National Museum of the Republic of Kazakhstan in Astana.

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