29 January 2023 The Future is the Product of the Past

10,000-year-old Sculptures and Figurines holding Phallus of the Taş Tepeler in the southeast Turkey

One of the common features of male depictions with similar features found in the region called Taş Tepeler (Stone Hills), located in southeast Turkey, is holding a phallus, either standing or sitting.

The numerous findings of male sculptures and male figurines in the Taş Tepeler region may be an indication of a culture that symbolized the importance of fertility and population.

From the end of the Epi-paleolithic era, human figurines and idols begin to appear, as well as animal figurines found in Anatolia and Mesopotamia. While figurines of animals continue into the Neolithic period, there is a significant increase in findings of human figurines.

Especially the increase in male statues in the region called Taş Tepeler is remarkable. These statues are made out of limestone, while the figurines are made out of limestone or baked clay.

One commonality among these male depictions is that the hands join in front of the figure, sometimes holding a phallus, either standing or sitting.

The Urfa-Yeni Mahalle male statue that stands in the Şanlıurfa city center, the male figurine found at Karahan Tepe (Hill), and the figurines found at Göbekli Tepe, Harbetsuvan, Nevali Chori, Kilisik all have similar portrayals of the male form and phallus.

Karahantepe statue.

Excavations at the Nevali Chori settlement resulted in the first discovery of T-shaped columns. And among the finds found in the layers of the Pre-Pottery Neolithic settlement identified, there were also some statues of male figures. In addition, thanks to the presence of arm and finger reliefs on the T-shaped column, it was understood that these were stylized male sculptures.

In 1993, during a landscaping project in the Yeni Mahalle area of şanlurfa, a limestone sculpture depicting a human figure with a phallus and no legs, about 1.93 m in height, carved as a column, was discovered by coincidence. This sculpture, which displays arm and finger reliefs, is comparable to the T-shaped pillar in style. The Yeni Mahalle sculpture is the oldest known human-sized statue.

Male statue in Göbeklitepe.
Male statue in Göbeklitepe.

The pillars discovered in the Göbekli Tepe settlement’s III layer, the lowest layer, were dated to 9100 BCE. These pillars, which also stylize humans and stand around 5 meters tall, are formed of monolithic stones and are the first known specimens of this time.

Male figures; male sculpture heads, totems, masks, torsos and phallus pieces, male sculptures in the settlement of Göbekli Tepe are plentiful.

Aside from the pillars which stylize the human form, two styles of statues of the male form emerge. One of them is the sitting male statues, and the other is the standing male statues.

Kilisik statue
Kilisik statue.

In 1964, the residents of Kilisik Village, located inside the limits of Adıyaman’s Kahta region, gave a T-shaped column to the Commagene Excavation team. Two human reliefs with arms, fingers, and heads may be seen on this stone. What makes this pillar unique is that instead of a phallus, there is a hollow region beneath the bodies of the figurines. It is uncertain if this empty part is original or was added later.

The aceramic Neolithic Period is also represented in a piece of sculpture on exhibit at the Gaziantep Museum. The existence of two facial reliefs, in addition to the arms on both sides, is the most notable characteristic of this statue from an unknown location. The possible area where the phallus will be located at the front of the statue is completely scraped. The sculpture in Gaziantep is a significant example of the shift from the T-shaped pillar tradition to the sculpture tradition.

Harbetsuvan male  statue
Harbetsuvan male statue.

The man figure discovered at Harbetsuvan Tepesi may be considered as a continuation of Göbekli Tepe’s male sculpting tradition. This sculpture belongs to the same category as the Göbekli Tepe and Karahan Tepe seated male sculptures.

One of the most striking of these male depictions is undoubtedly a scene with five figures consisting of a human, a leopard, and a bull in Sayburç in Taş Tepeler, Şanlıurfa.

In the figures that are thought to be related to each other, there are two leopards with their mouths open on either side of the male figure holding his phallus with one hand. To the left of them, there was a man holding a snake and a bull standing in front of him with his big horns.

Sayburç

Considered to be contemporary with the last periods of Göbekli Tepe, the Sayburç is also one of the Taş Tepes in Şanlıurfa, which consists of Göbekli Tepe and eleven other archaeological sites around it.

The common similarities of all these male statues and male figurines may indicate the importance of population development in this period. In the following periods, this importance may have evolved towards the sanctity of women’s fertility.

Source: Celal ULUDAĞ, Bahattin ÇELİK, Kaya TOLON, “A MALE FIGURINE FROM HARBETSUVAN TEPESİ”, Karadeniz Journal, 38.

https://doi.org/10.17498/kdeniz.423948

Banner
Related Post

Scientists recreate Stone Age cave lighting

17 June 2021

17 June 2021

For early hunter-gatherer societies that were lucky enough to live near caves, these natural underground homes provided ideal protection from...

Stunning carved stone depicting a mystery naked horseman is discovered at the Roman fort of Vindolanda

30 June 2021

30 June 2021

Near Hadrian’s Wall in northern England, archaeologists discovered a carved sandstone slab portraying a naked horseman. During the annual excavations...

Illegal digs reveal rare Roman-era mass grave in Turkey

28 July 2022

28 July 2022

A total of 27 skeletons were found in a burial pit carved into the rocks in Adıyaman province, an important...

Decapitated skeletons of Roman ‘criminals’ found on HS2 route

5 February 2022

5 February 2022

Archaeologists working with the HS2 project have discovered 425 bodies on the route of the new railway line – around...

A Rare Late Neolithic Period Seal found in Domuztepe Mound

25 August 2022

25 August 2022

A rare Late Neolithic Seal was discovered during the 2022 excavations of the Domuztepe Mound (Domuztepe Höyük), located on the...

A 500-year-old mural linked to an Aztec god was found under layers of paint in Mexican Church

15 October 2022

15 October 2022

A mural of an Aztec rabbit God of alcohol is not something anyone expects to see inside a church, but...

Millennia-Old İron Production Facilities Found in Iran

2 May 2021

2 May 2021

Archaeologists have uncovered many millennia-old iron manufacturing sites in a historical village in southcentral Iran. A local tourism official declared...

Archaeologists have discovered the ruins of what may be one of the four lost Ancient Egyptian “Sun Temples”

31 July 2022

31 July 2022

A Polish and Italian archaeological mission, while conducting an excavation in the Abusir necropolis near Saqqara in Egypt, unearthed the...

Archaeologists have discovered 85 ancient tombs, a watchtower, and a temple site in Egypt’s Gabal al-Haridi region

5 May 2022

5 May 2022

The Egyptian archaeological mission discovered 85 tombs, a watchtower, and a temple site in the Gabal al-Haridi area of Sohag,...

Ancient Herpes DNA Points to Oral Herpes’ Beginnings: First kisses may have helped spread cold sore virus

28 July 2022

28 July 2022

The ancient genomes of the herpes virus, which commonly causes lip sores and currently infects about 3.7 billion people worldwide,...

9 Synagogues in Izmir to Reopen as Museum

26 March 2022

26 March 2022

As part of a Jewish heritage project in Izmir, Turkey, nine historic synagogues will be reopened as museums. Built by...

Archaeological excavations started again after 50 years in Tunceli Tozkoparan mound

28 June 2021

28 June 2021

Archaeological excavations at the Tozkoparan Mound in Turkey’s Tunceli province are anticipated to turn the city into one of eastern...

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a stone circle in the Castilly Henge, located in Cornwall, England

20 May 2022

20 May 2022

Archaeologists have unearthed a mysterious stone circle at the center of a prehistoric ritual site near Bodmin in Cornwall, located...

World’s Oldest Murder

14 February 2021

14 February 2021

Researchers found a mass grave in a cave in Spain, now known as Sima de los Huesos, or the Pit...

The Anahita Temple in western Iran is Being Restored

11 June 2021

11 June 2021

A restoration project has been commenced on the ancient temple of Anahita, which is located in the city of Kangavar,...

Comments
Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *