Tell Yunatsite, Southern Bulgaria. Recent excavations and new insights on the Chalcolithic in Thrace
The Balkan Heritage Foundation and the Department of Archaeology at New Bulgarian University organized the BEMA Online Seminar in Balkan and Eastern Mediterranean Archaeology on Saturday, February 05, 2022. Guest lecturer Dr. Kamen Boyadzhiev – Head of the “Exhibitions” Department at the National Archaeological Institute with Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences, presented on the following topic: “Tell Yunatsite, Southern Bulgaria. Recent excavations and new insights on the Chalcolithic in Thrace”.
The prehistoric tell at Yunatsite in the Maritsa River valley (Southern Bulgaria) is among the biggest tell-sites in the Balkans. During large-scale excavations, a Medieval cemetery, fortifications from the Roman period, and layers from the Iron Аge, Early Bronze Age and Chalcolithic have been revealed.
The studies in the last years are concentrated on the thick Chalcolithic layer, which covers most of the 5th millennium BCE. They reveal a complex settlement and social structure. Long-distance trade and craft specialization have been attested. The copper tools and pottery crucibles suggest local metallurgical production, while a small golden bead dated to the mid-5th millennium BCE is one of the earliest golden artifacts known so far. The final Chalcolithic settlement was destroyed by an enemy attack around 4200 cal. BCE and provides important evidence for the end of the Copper Age cultures in the Balkans.
The presentation highlights the most interesting results from the latest excavations and their significance for understanding the cultural processes, technological innovations and social dynamics in the 5th millennium BCE Balkans.
You can now watch the lecture online in the gallery bellow.