International Scientific Conference "Archeology of the Arctic"
November 19-23, 2017

New touches to the portrait of the Yamal population in the Middle ages (the 9th – the 12th centures).

A.V.  Plekhanov

SPI YNAO  Arctic Research Center, Salekhard



In 1928 north of Harasavey community on cape Tiutey (Morzhovy) an expedition headed by V.P. Evladov officially discovered the first in the Yamal archaeological site - a Sikhirtia mound. In spring 1929 cape Tiutey was studied by V.N. Chernetsov. On the basis of the obtained artifacts the site was dated as the end of the  1st - beginning of the 2nd millennium AD. [Чернецов, 1935. P. 123].

In 1960s L.P. Lashuk for the first time time began investigating the eastern coast of the Yamal peninsula where he studied a hillfort not far from Bukhta Nakhodka [Лашук, 1968. PP. 182-183]. In his paper he introduced the term the Tiuteisalinski type ceramics, which was formerly described by V.N. Chernetsov as belonging to the Orontursky stage of the Lower Ob archaeological culture which existed, according to him, not later then the 6th-9th centuries. [Чернецов, 1957. P. 194].

Similar type of ceramics was found recently in 10 more archaeological sites: Yuneta-Yakha 13, Mutnaya 5, Sjoyakha 1, Pontei-to 1, Yarte 6, Yur-Yakha 3, Tirtyayakha 1, Neroyun 1, Khetose 1, Yar-Sale 1.

The first absolute dates were obtained for the Yamal sites in the course of N.V. Fedorova's excavations from the Tiutei-Sale 1 three houses filling: of the 4th- 6th, 6th-7th, and 11th-15th centuries. [Федорова и др., 1998. P. 66].

The next radiocarbon dates series was obtained in the course of the Yarte 6 settlement studies, all these dates fell within the period from the end of the   9th - to the end of the 10th centuries. On the basis of the dendrochronological study of 46 willow stipitates from Yarte 6 their cutting dates were obtained ranging from the beginning of the  11th to the beginning of the 12th century. [Шиятов, Хантемиров, 2000. PP. 113-120].

The basis of the settlement's economy was fishing, and hunting for reindeer, polar fox, waterfowl, polar bear, and walrus.  Main occupations of the population were woodworking and commercial reindeer and polar fox skins dressing.

There are two so far known necropolises of the 9th-12th centuries in the peninsular - the Khetose 1 and the Yur-Yakha 3 burial sites. Their grave goods consisted of artistic bronze items from the North-West Siberia, the Kama and the Upper Volga regions, as well as items imported from Eastern Europe and dated as the 8th-12th centuries. [Брусницына, 2000. PP. 32-48].

It may be assumed that the Yamal tundra colonization occurred in the 9th-12th centuries by the population with the already established nomadic way of life, and with extensive cultural and commercial contacts covering practically the whole of Eurasia,



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Lashuk L.P.Sirtya - the ancient people of sub-Arctic // Problems of anthropology and historical ethnography of Asia.  – M., 1968. – PP. 178-193.

Fedorova N.V., Kosintsev P.A., W. Fitzhugh. Gone to the hills. Culture of the Iron Age North-West Yamal coast population // – Ekaterinburg: Ekaterinburg Press,  1998. – 180 p.

Chernetsov V. N. Ancient maritime culture in the Yamal peninsula // Soviet Ethnography.  1935. – № 4-5. – PP. 110-133.

Shiyatov S, G., Khantemirov R.M. Dendrochronological underwood dating from archaeological settlement Yarte VI on the Yamal peninsula // Yamal antiquities. – Ekaterinburg-Salekhard: UB RAS Press, 2000. – Issue 1. – PP. 113-120.

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