Bronze Age Burial Mound Excavated in Kazakhstan

Kazakhstan Frog DiscAINABULAK, KAZAKHSTAN—According to a Live Science report, excavation of a Bronze Age burial mound in eastern Kazakhstan has yielded the remains of a girl between the ages of 12 and 15 at the time of death. Her body was surrounded by some 180 ankle bones from sheep or cattle, three cow shoulder blades, several metal sword pommels, a mirror, a bronze bowl, and a bronze disc bearing an image of a frog. Rinat Zhumatayev of Al-Farabi Kazakh National University said that the girl was placed on her left side, wearing small wire earrings in both ears, and a necklace of beads. Additional investigation may help Zhumatayev and his colleagues understand the possible significance of the frog carving. He noted that in antiquity, frogs were sometimes associated with water, fertility, and pregnancy. The many animal bones, meanwhile, may have been a cult practice associated with meditation, or as symbols of well-being or good luck. In this context, Zhumatayev explained, the bones may have been a wish for a successful transition from one world to the next. To read about a burial mound uncovered in Kazakhstan’s remote Tarbagatai Mountains, go to “Iron Age Teenagers.”


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