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Поволжская археология

Guard Fortifications of the 13th Century in “Khersakei” and Crimean Gotia

Myts V.L. (Saint-Petersburg, Russian Federation)


page 48–63

UDC 902/904

DOI: https://doi.org/10.24852/pa2020.2.32.48.63


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The Seljuk expansion of 1217–1225 and the first appearance of the Mongols in the territory of the peninsula in 1223 stimulated the construction of guard fortresses in the vicinity of Kherson and Gotia, controlling the passes and routes to the valleys of the mountainous Crimea. In this time period (1220–1230s), in addition to the 12 Early Byzantine fortress towns (6th – 12th centuries), a total of 24–25 new fortifications appeared in the deep mountain regions and along the southern bank of the peninsula. The classification of these monuments into a single group is hampered by the almost complete absence of contemporary studies. The author suggests that the study of these fortresses in the form of “clearing”, laying of pits or small excavations, conducted in the 1940–1960s (generally, with no stratigraphy recording), was accompanied by excessively wide and insufficiently substantiated dating, as demonstrated by the studies of 1979–1980 at Isar-Kaya fortification near Shaitan-Merdven mountain pass. This fortification was dated the 10th –15th centuries based on the excavations of the 1960s, but actually represented a single-layer monument of the 13th century

Keywords

archaeologyguard fortresses13th century KhersonKhersakeyaGotiaTrebizondSinopRum SultanateSouthern Bank

About the author(s)

Myts Victor L. Candidate of Historical Sciences. State Hermitage. Dvortsovaya Naberezhnaya (Embankment), 34, Saint Petersburg, 190 000, Russian Federation; vic.mytz@yandex.ru