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Parseh J Archaeol Stud 2018, 2(4): 23-40 Back to browse issues page
The Newfound Evidence of the Oldest Remains of Architecture of Chalcolithic Period in Kurdistan Province (Based on Archaeological Excavations)
Mahnaz Sharifi1, Abbas Motarjem2
1- Assistant Professor, Department of Archaeology Islamic Period, Research Institute of Cultural Heritage and Tourism.
2- Associate Professor, Department of Archaeology, Bu-Ali Sina University. , amotarjem@gmail.com
Abstract:   (8729 Views)
Archaeological excavations Tepe Gheshlagh have been helpful in understanding Chalcolithic sites in the high region separating the East Central Zagros and the Southern Lake Urmia Basin. Though cultural interface between the two regions was alluded to in the earlier publications, nothing was known of the existence of intermediate sites between them. Tepe Gheshlagh is a site at the center of Talvar valley that as a natural corridor serves to bring the concerned regions into closer contact, and its archaeological data will contribute to reconstruction of interactions of the regions in the Chalcolithic period. The Tepe Gheshlagh is one of the few settlements of the ancient villagers in the Talvar valley of the Bijar City, dating back to the fifth millennium BC (Ancient, Middle, and Late Chalcolithic period) which according to the Thermoluminescence tests it has been settlement form 5500 BC to 3600 BC without any interruption. Performing three seasons of archaeological excavations in this site provides us valuable information about the cultural and archaeological conditions of the region. This site have around one hectare, and during the settlement is formed ancient deposit more than 14 meters.
Keywords: Tepe Gheshlagh, Village Period, Architecture of Fifth Millennium BC, Native Material.

Excavations Tepe Gheshlagh have over 14 meters of deposits from different phases of the Chalcolithic period at the site, which consists of a sequence of five periods that begins with the characteristic Dalma material at the lowermost and ends with the Godin VI/VII type material at the uppermost deposit that marks the later phase of the Late Chalcolithic period. After Bronze Age material and after a cultural gap is appeared Iron III. Thus, we deal here with an almost uninterrupted sequence in the Central Zagros spanning almost two millennia. Results from the three seasons of excavations have furnished a clear picture of the Chalcolithic architecture (settlement sequence and other cultural material extending from the Dalma period up to the end of Godin VI). Excavated data from Tepe Gheshlagh is show connections between the Northwest Iranian cultures (Dalma tradition) and Central ZagrosThis is certainly due to the strategic location of the region in a natural pass that has mediated interactions between the two regions. Through cultural studies of the archaeological site of Gheshlagh in Talvar in Kurdistan province, regarded as the regional key site and a major settlement from the Chalcolithic period with clear evidence of Dalma traditions, this study will attempts to illustrate origin and development of the Dalma culture in the region and study evolution in the eastern Central Zagros hinterlands. Also, the cultural developments that took place in these hinterlands will be elucidated and the role of Gheshlagh as a key settlement site in this regard will be determined and the trend of the economic, social and cultural changes of the site’s inhabitants over time will be explained in light of archaeological data. In this context, absolute dates of ceramics would greatly facilitate the precise identification of the strata through providing a chronology for the region. 

Goals of Tepe Gheshlagh
One of the major goals of the present work is define the nature of the cultural ties between the early village settlements of the eastern Central Zagros hinterlands and the neighboring regions. There are indications that clearly prove the interactions. We may consider two approaches to the problem. The first is in light of indirect interactions, which including: (1) the material that may have entered the region as raw material or finished products, which are certainly of nonlocal origin; (2) inspirations from Hasuna tradition in the form of Hasuna-like pottery types, ceramics decorated with applied scales characteristic of Umm Dabaghiya, and abstract motifs of the Halaf period such as sun motif. The second builds on direct interactions: there are indications that reveal direct interface of Tepe Gheshlagh with the Southern Mesopotamia and Susiana plain. One of the clay seals is with impression of a stamp seal, it was made from the local materials of area. Other one of the findings is discovery of at least two unique sherds that obviously belong to the Ubaid period. The intrusion of Ubaid period material to Iran is known from Gawra XIII contemporary to the Chalcolithic period, and T. Cuyler Young and Levine’s observations during their surveys of the Eastern Central Zagros indicate the strong presence of Ubaid material culture, represented for instance by Dalma-Ubaid ware. The third indication is a quasi-cylindrical seal attesting to the transition from stamp to cylindrical seals, though technically it is a cylindrical seal not a stamp one. Similar trend is as yet unreported from any other region. 

Tepe Gheshlagh is located in the highland region between northwest and central Zagros in the current boundary of Bijar City. In terms of biological sequences, 5 periods of the settlements and 7 architectural phases of the Chalcolithic period were identified in this site. The archaeological evidence of the ancient village of the Tepe Gheshlagh indicated that the architectural texture in terms of physically consists of small central chambers overlooking the central courtyard, which due to the movable findings; it is possible to identify their function, such as kitchen, warehouse, and living space. In terms of architectural form, the spaces are often right-angled, and entirely are made of native and local materials, including mold brick and stratum, whereas the thickness of the main walls in relation to the dividing walls are Maximum twice, and the thickness of most of them are between 40 and 55 cm, and often in the first ridge used a one row of stones as foundation of the building. But the small walls from the beginning have been made with stratum. The main entrances are mainly to the Southwest (sunshiny). The fastening method is used for connecting the walls in the corners, and in the remaining height of the buildings, there is no sign of tension and cracks caused by the difference in load occurrence in the corners.
Keywords: Tepe Gheshlagh, Village Period, Architecture of Fifth Millennium BC, Native Material.
Full-Text [PDF 2173 kb]   (1218 Downloads)    
Type of Study: Research | Subject: Special Archeology
Received: 2018/12/7 | Accepted: 2018/12/7 | Published: 2018/12/7
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Sharifi M, Motarjem A. The Newfound Evidence of the Oldest Remains of Architecture of Chalcolithic Period in Kurdistan Province (Based on Archaeological Excavations). Parseh J Archaeol Stud 2018; 2 (4) :23-40
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