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M. V. Lyubichev (Kharkiv, Ukraine), E. Schultze (Berlin, Germany)

Multiple Burials in the Cemeteries of the Chernyakhov-Sântana de Mureş Culture

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Pages: 253-279 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.55086/SL22253279

Funerary customs of the Chernyakhov culture are subject have been studied for more than 50 years. But until now, the graves including two or more deceased have never got particular attention. For the area of the Chernyakhov-Sântana de Mureş culture, 13 sites with double or multiple inhumation graves have been detected. Even on graveyards with large scale excavations, the number of multiple inhumations varies from one double/multiple burial to 15. In Târgşor cemetery, this number includes multiple cremation graves too. Therefore, these graves represent a rare phenomenon within the funerary customs of the Chernyakhov-Sântana de Mureş culture.
Concerning inhumation burials, there are no connections to special grave constructions, double burials have been found in simple pits, as well as in graves with horizontal shelf, niche or installation made of wood. The grave goods are typical for this culture. The combination of grave construction and inventory of double/multiple burials indicates that the deceased could belong to every social stratum. There is no evidence that the second or third person were buried as companion or even sacrifice for the first deceased. Depending on gender and age of the deceased, other reasons have to be taken into account for the multiple burials: either the presumably simultaneous death of two/three persons, or within a short time interval, for example due to an illness or epidemic disease.

Keywords: Late Roman Period, Chernyakhov/Sântana de Mureş Culture, cemeteries, multiple burials

Information about authors:

Mihail Lyubichev
(Kharkiv, Ukraine). Doctor of Historical Sciences. V. N. Karazin Kharkiv National University. Svobody Place, 6, Kharkiv, 61022, Ukraine
E-mail: [email protected]
Erdmute Schultze (Berlin, Germany). Doctor. Eurasian Department of the Germany Archaeological Institut. Im Dol 2-6, 14195, Berlin, Germany
E-mail: [email protected]

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