Kyrgyzstan: Kurgans

Kurgan is a kind of tomb prepared for a dead person: large wooden cages made of laying treelogs. In many cultures the mound was round towering toward the sky. Many kurgans in Kyrgyzstan have circle forms because the square and circle symbolized Heaven and Earth and the mound elevation could symbolize the mountain - that is a place closer to Gods. During excavations in kurgans were found many things such as: vases, dishes, small wood tables, cauldrons with food that can be interpreted as the nourishment for the future life.


A kurgan is also a complex architectural structure which reflects artistic cosmological ideas existed within the society. The large kurgans of IRON AGE occupied a highest point in the landscape, visibly connected to other large kurgans forming a chain that can stretch for 5-10 kilometers. The single kurgan burials, generally located in the watershed, situated in the open steppes in some significant distance from rivers, appear only at the beginning of IRON AGE. They differed from the kurgans of the BRONZE AGE usually located in groups along river terraces.

People were looking for special places that would be suitable for burial purpose. It had to be situated near a pasture, not far from a water source. The place near kurgan was outlined by shallow, wide ditch, a soil from which was placed on the inner side of ditch. A large amount of the soil taken from the pit was spread around it, and the smaller around was spread further out within a defined area. The surface of the pit was covered with brushwood and filled with soil.