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 Location: Chelyabinsk, Russia.  Grid Reference: 52.63� N, 59.56� E.


      Arkaim: (Prehistoric CitadelCulture).

In 1935 aerial photography led to the recognition of several unusual circles in the Southern Urals steppe. It was obvious that those circles were made by humans. At that time no one could explain the origin of these circles, it was a mystery. Twenty of the spiral-shaped settlements, believed to be the original home of the Aryan people, have been identified, and there are about 50 more suspected sites. They all lie buried in a region more than 640km long near Russia's border with Kazakhstan.

The ancient Ural fortress Arkaim located in the Chelyabinsk region is often called the �Russian Stonehenge.� In addition to streets and buildings scientists have found remnants of a water system, metallurgic furnaces, and mines. It is also said to be one of the strongest 'anomaly zones' in Russia.

The remains have been dated to c. 2000-1600 B.C. (Gening, Zdanovich 1993, Zdanovich 1995, 1997) (4)

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The first official sighting of Arkaim was in 1935... 'Using information derived from military aerial photography, the geologist, Batenina, identified a number of these fortresses during the 1960s. A complex of 17 fortresses was discovered in the southern Urals in the region of Magnitogorsk, Troizk, and Orenburg. Excavations have been undertaken at the settlements of Sintashta, Arkaim, Ustje, Kujsak, and others'. (Genning et al 1992: fig. 1; Zdanovich 1995; Vinogradov 1995; Malutina et al 1995). The first research on the Prehistory of Arkaim came in the same year: Batenina, T. M. 1935. Distentsionnye metody pri-ercheologicheskich issledovaniyan v sapovednike Arkaim, pp. 105�6 in Kultura drevnih narodov stepnoi Evrasii i fenomen protogorodskoi civilizacii yuzshnogo Urala 1. Chelyabinsk (�Distant methods of archaeological investigations in the Arkaim.� Culture of the ancient peoples of the Eurasian steppe and the phenomenon of proto-city civilization). (5)

In 1987, Arkaim valley in the Southern Urals was going to be flooded and turned into an artificial lake. But before that would happened archaeologists were given a year to find out about the mysterious circles. When archaeologists begun to work they found out that those circles were Arkaim's settlements! It was a sensation!  Arkaim is not only a settlement, but it is also a temple and an astronomic observatory! It was round and was 160 meters in diameter. It was surrounded by a ditch that was filled with water. An outside wall was very massive, the height was 5.5 meters and width was 5 meters. The wall had four gates. The largest gate was south-west gate. All the buildings were shaped in half rounds and were connected to the outside wall. Each building had exit to the main street in the city.

Arkaim was built with four entrances to the city strictly oriented at cardinal points. It was built according to a previously designed plan, with a high level of precision. All circumferences have one centre where all radial feeders meet together. (3) The residential area of the fortress boasted advanced amenities considering the time it was built in. The pavement made of thick logs hid a sewage system. Two round one-storey houses positioned along the perimeter between the two fortified walls comprised separate apartments, a hundred or more square meters each. In addition to several rooms, each apartment had a hearth and a well. In the very centre of the city-fortress was a square where religious rites were performed.

The first city, known as Arkaim, was rediscovered in 1989, soon after the soviet authorities allowed non-military aerial photography for the first time. The full extent of the remains is only now becoming apparent. Items that have so far been dug up include many pieces of pottery covered in swastikas, which were widely used ancient symbols of the sun and eternal life. (3)

The shape of each of the cities, which are mainly in the Chelyabinsk district, are circular, divided into segments with a uniform street plan. The settlements, which would each have housed about 2000 people are all surrounded by a ditch and have a square in the middle. (3) Schematically we can see Mandala  - a square inside of a round. According to ancient scripts round is a symbol of Universe and square is a symbol of Earth

Arkaim, Russia.

Reconstruction of Arkaim Citadel

The city was destroyed completely by fire. Among the archaeological finds there are no human remains or bones of domestic animals. No valuables, no jewellery, no religious objects.


Tradition and Folklore in the Arkaim Region:

Arkaim is interesting not only as a historic monument. It is reported to be one of the strongest 'anomaly' zones in Russia.

Locals believe it to be a sacred place. Pilgrims come here all year round to get some healing water from the Bolshaya Karaganka River, and in the summer they coat themselves with clay. They say it helps treating skin diseases.

The mountains surrounding the fortress are also unusual. The most famous one is Shamanka (or Bold Mountain). People climb to its top to get some positive energy, pray or meditate. People in serious medical condition are brought there for healing. Visitors come to the top of Repentance Mountain to ask for forgiveness. Love Mountain is believed to bring personal luck. The nearby Male Forest is visited by women who have relationship problems. The rumour has it, a walk in this forest will make a woman popular with men. The growth near Grachinaya Mountain (also called Blessed) is infamous. Birch trunks there are abnormally crooked at the bottom. They say people cannot stay there for too long, otherwise they risk losing their mind. (1)


Who were they:

It has been suggested from a series of horse burials, that this site has produced evidence that the cities could have been the home of the Aryans.

Several ancient Indian texts believed to have been written by Aryans recount similar rituals. "These ancient Indian texts and hymns describe sacrifices of horses and burials and the way the meat is cut off and the way the horse is buried with its master ... If you match this with the way the skeletons and the graves are being dug up in Russia, they are a millimetre-perfect match." (3)


If archaeologists confirm the cities as Aryan, they could be the remnants of a civilisation that spread through Europe and much of Asia. Their language has been identified as the precursor of modern Indo-European tongues, including English. Words such as brother, guest and oxen have been traced back to this prototype.

"Potentially, this could rival ancient Greece in the age of the heroes," said British historian Bettany Hughes, who spent much of the northern summer exploring the region for a BBC radio program, Tracking the Aryans."We are all told that there is this kind of mother tongue, proto-Indo-European, from which all the languages we know emerge.


Sintashta-Arkaim Culture:

Several years ago archaeologists considered all sites of the second half of the 2nd millennium B.C. as belonging to the Andronovo culture. Within the last decade, two additional, and yet more ancient cultures were discovered in Eurasia that have several characteristics in common. These were named "Petrovka" and "Sintashta." Located in the southern Ural region, they are dated to c. 2000-1600 B.C. (Gening, Zdanovich 1993, Zdanovich 1995, 1997) The former occupied the eastern region (Tobol -Ishim), and the latter the southern area. Previously, Sintashta settlements had been excavated but they had not been understood because of their difference from the classical Andronovo culture. Moreover, because the complexes contained some features belonging to the Abashevo culture, the original researchers had initially included them into the Abashevo sphere.

The most diagnostic feature of the Sintashta settlement site is its closed fortification that consisted of ramparts and ditches, enforced by a fence or wall built from unfired clay bricks and wooden frames. The site plan was based on either a round or rectangular form. The fortified area included from 6,000 to 30,000 sq. meters. Towers and other constructions protected the entrances and the accesses to water (Zdanovich 1995). The houses were 25-130 sq.meters, rectangular and had pit-storage, open fire hearths, wells. Some also included metallurgical furnaces.

Why had the individuality of Sintashta sites and their associated artifacts not been recognized earlier? And why are the sites still the subject of dispute? The crux of this matter is that frequently the more ancient deposits had been destroyed by subsequent layers of occupation. It was possible to understand the Sintashta settlement only after a another site had been investigated more recently.

The Sintashta sites have been referred to as "The Land of Towns " (Gening, Zdanovich 1993, Zdanovich 1995). The cultue had occupied the territory along the eastern slopes of the Ural Mountains. The fortified settlement studied in most detail is Arkaim. Occupying 20,000 sq. meters, it was discovered in 1987 by the team headed by G. Zdanovich during salvage excavations before the construction of a dam. The excavation revealed that the settlement had been burned and, therefore, many details were preserved. The population, however, had vacated the city before the fire and took all their possession with them.

Arkaim had two protective circular walls and two circles of standard dwellings separated by a street around a central square. The external wall, 160 m in diameter and 4 m wide, was built from specially selected soil that had been packed into timber frames before being faced with adobe bricks (Zdanovich 1997). On the interior, houses abutted the wall and were situated radially with their doors exiting to the circular internal street.

Many interpretations have been suggested in relation to this site - a military fort, proto-city, or a ceremonial and religious center. The latter hypothesis appears reasonable, if we bear in mind that the sets of artifacts excavated were not characteristic of everyday usage. More plausible are the nterpretation put forward by researchers who regard sites such as Arkaim as combination of administrative and ceremonial centers. Possibly this was a location where about 1,000 to 2,000 people�aristocracy (and craftsmen) gathered periodically to perform rituals.  (4)



The similarity of latitude, date, and size led some astronomers (Bystrushkin 2003) to compare Arkaim with Stonehenge in England. According to their claims, the Neolithic observatory at Stonehenge allowed for observation of 15 astronomical phenomena using 22 elements, whereas the contemporaneous observatory at Arkaim allowed for observation of 18 astronomical phenomena using 30 elements. They include sunsets and sunrises on the days of equinox and solstice, as well as sunsets and sunrises during low and high Moon. (1)

The precision of measurements in Stonehenge is estimated at 10 arc-minutes to a degree, that in Arkaim being put at 1 arc-minute. (2)


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1). http://english.pravda.ru/science/mysteries/07-06-2010/113680-arkaim-0/#
2). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Arkaim
3). http://cosmodromium.blogspot.com/2010/10/unearthed-aryan-cities-rewrite-history.html?zx=d1240879f64cb265
4). http://www.csen.org/koryakova2/Korya.Sin.Ark.html
5). http://www.csen.org/BAR.../04%20Part%203.%20Bronze.Int.pdf


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