ResearchBib Share Your Research, Maximize Your Social Impacts
Sign for Notice Everyday Sign up >> Login

Signs on bricks of the Semikarakorsk fortress

Journal: Povolzhskaya Arkheologiya (The Volga River Region Archaeology) (Vol.4, No. 14)

Publication Date:

Authors : ; ;

Page : 92-115

Keywords : Khazar khaganate; Semikarakorsk hillfort; brick; builder’s marks; typology of drawings; organization of construction business.;

Source : Downloadexternal Find it from : Google Scholarexternal


The article presents a study of bricks with different signs from Semikarakorsk fortress of the Khazar Khaganate on the Lower Don, dating to the late 8th ? early 9th centuries. It deals with about one hundred burnt bricks, mainly in fragments, and a fragment of adobe brick, each marked with signs. Signs on bricks from Semikarakorsk fortress are less common than on bricks of Sarkel and Pravoberezhnaya Tsimlyanskaya fortresses, but today, it is the unique collection on the Lower Don that allows tracking how various types of signs are distributed across different sections of the fortress. This approach gives new information on organization of construction business in Eastern Europe in the early Middle Ages, and specifically in Khazar Khaganate. In this regard, the Semikarakorsk collection is comparable to the one from Pliska site. Typological analysis has shown that the Semikarakorsk corpus of signs is less diverse compared to Sarkel and the Mayaki hillfort. Two types of signs are most numerous ? bellshaped and trident with a rectangular cup. The former is localized on the northern wall of the fortress, while the latter near the citadel. There is a correlation between sizes of bricks and types of signs. Signs were typically produced by use of tools. Finger drawings are rare (12 %). Signs were applied on the top (during the manufacturing process) side of the brick, on raw clay, before baking. The analysis of techniques and styles of drawing showed that similar signs were applied by different people.

Last modified: 2016-11-22 22:47:04