The Early Bronze Age Cemetery at Jelka



Rok publikování 2021
Druh Další prezentace na konferencích
Fakulta / Pracoviště MU

Filozofická fakulta

Popis In this presentation, we will introduce a recently discovered Early Bronze Age cemetery from south-west Slovakia at Jelka, district Galanta. Small-scale excavation of the Department of Archaeology – Comenius University in Bratislava was held during the summer season of 2020. We excavated three graves, two adults and one child. All three burials could be safely dated to the first half of the Early Bronze Age and at least two graves should belong to Nitra culture in terms of traditional culture-historical classification. These are, however, not the only known graves from the site. In 2019, one female grave was uncovered during the rescue excavation of The Monumentary Board of Trnava, and there are further indications for other discovered graves in close vicinity of the 2020 excavation site. Having these new discoveries brought to light, maybe the well-known Únětice “hoard” from Jelka should be reviewed again. Jelka cemetery fits well into the structural pattern of the surrounding Early Bronze Age funerary components, such as Abrahám, Sládkovičovo, Veľký Grob and Matúškovo, to name a few. The upper mentioned funerary components were not excavated completely, but still provided dozens of graves which span from the beginning of the Early Bronze Age till the beginning of the Middle Bronze Age. There is, therefore, strong evidence that burial grounds in the close vicinity of Jelka lasted for several centuries and contained hundreds of graves. Based on that, we can assume that Jelka cemetery should be comparable in size and with similar life-span. In this context, the mound like features (ring ditches) discovered by the geophysical prospection are very intriguing. Even if the excavation was small and uncovered burials were not particularly „rich“, they still provided us with valuable archaeological and anthropological data. Special attention deserves the combined necklace from the child burial, made of bone beads, dentalium shell and copper ring. The arrangement of all its components seems rather unique and to our knowledge, necklace like this was never previously documented in situ. We would like to present a multi-disciplinary approach to analysis of recovered data. We believe that concentrated effort to obtain as much information as possible even from smaller samples always wins over the vast amount of unprocessed “raw” burial data.

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