Acemhöyük ve Arıbaş Mezarlığı'ndan İnsan İskelet Kalıntılarının Gömü Geleneği Açısından İncelenmesi
Durur, Mine Lütfiye
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Rituals are symbolic activities performed communally during significant thresholds and events in an individual’s life such as birth, marriage, death. As means of expressing thoughts, emotions and belief sytems, funerary rites reflect the ideology and mindset of individuals. Having great potential to help us understand the social, cultural and ideological notions and constructions of archaeological societies, funerary studies are important sources of data for reconstructing the dynamics of ancient human populations. The goal of this study is to analyze the funerary rites of Acemhöyük by examining human skeletal remains, burial types and burial goods. Data acquired has been evaluated with other contemporaneous populations to apprehend the similarities and differences between Anatolian Middle Bronze Age settlements regarding burial practices. The sample of this study consists 187 individuals dated back to Assyrian Trade Colony Period comprising 45 males, 70 females and 57 subadults whilst age and sex of 15 individuals are unknown. 22,5% of the individuals are unearthed from intramural burials while 77,5% are obtained from settlement’s extramural burial ground Arıbaş Cemetery. 37 of 42 individuals from intramural burials are subadults whereas individuals of all age and sex categories above 3 years of age are represented as inhumations or cremations in simple pits, pithoi and urn burials in the cemetery. It is determined that there is a discrimination against infants and children in Acemhöyük. They are excluded from the communal burial ground but rather buried in households or household related areas. Another remarkable finding in terms burial practices is that both inhumation and cremation are practiced synchronically regardless of parameters such as social stratification and gender roles. It is believed that rather being opposites, inhumation and cremation are subsidiary and whether to be inhumated or cremated are related to personal choices based on methodological differences such as accelerating the decomposition process.