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Home > Research > Publications > Annual Reports > 1995-96 Annual Report

Individual Scholarship


K. Aslihan Yener

During 1995/96, K. Asl1han Yener began the Amuq Valley Projects in the Hatay, Turkey (see separate report). In its initial year, Yener and Tony J. Wilkinson launched archaeological and geomorphological surveys of the settlements in the Amuq plain to assess their condition since they were last excavated in 1938. New sites were discovered in the now-dry bed of the Lake of Antioch and silted and deeply buried Chalcolithic levels of Tell Atchana/Alalakh were found as well. Profiles were drawn of a number of badly damaged sites such as Tell Kurdu and Tell Dhahab. Tell al-Judaidah, the location of some of the very earliest tin bronzes in the world, was given close attention and a modified step trench was excavated in the southeastern corner. Impressively large mudbrick walls emerged in what appears to be a substantial building dating to the late fourth/early third millennium b.c. The discovery of hitherto unknown pottery and a lead pendant, and the opportunity to enhance the stratigraphy for these pivotal periods (Phases F and G), energized this successful operation. A brief survey of the gold mines in the neighboring Amanus Mountains were also part of this season's activities. The work in the Amuq is published in two articles, "The Oriental Institute Amuq Valley Projects, 1995," The Oriental Institute News & Notes 148 (1996): 1-6 and a multi-authored article with Tony J. Wilkinson, S. Branting, E. Friedman, J. Lyon, C. Reichel, "The 1995 Oriental Institute Amuq Regional Projects," to appear in the next issue of Anatolica . Yener delivered a paper on this first season at the June Meetings of the XVIII International Symposium of Excavations, Surveys, and Archaeometry in Ankara, Turkey and to the meeting of the Chowder and Marching Society, November 1995.

In addition she has devoted time to processing the data from excavations at the Early Bronze Age tin metal processing sites at Göltepe and Kestel mine. Several papers were delivered on the results of the analyses: "Göltepe and Kestel: An Early Bronze Age Tin Industry," sponsored by the Archaeological Institute of America in Milwaukee; "Managing Metals in Early Bronze Age Anatolia," at the Ancient Mining and Metallurgy Conference sponsored by the British Museum, London, in September 1995; "The Rise of Civilization in Anatolia," sponsored by the Women's Board Lectures, at The Field Museum of Natural History, Chicago; "The Birthplace of Metals: The Search for Ancient Technology," sponsored by the American Women for International Understanding, Chicago; and "The Rise of Complex Metal Industries in Anatolia," sponsored by the Anthropology Department, Northwestern University, Chicago.

The published results of Yener's lead isotope analyses research and Göltepe excavations can be found in "Göltepe and Kestel," in Civilizations of the Ancient Near East, Vol. III , J. Sasson, ed. (1995), pp. 1519-21. An article jointly authored with E. V. Sayre and E. C. Joel, "Comments on `Oxhide Ingots, Recycling and the Mediterranean Metals Trade,'" was published in the Journal of Mediterranean Archaeology 8.1 (1995): 45-53; another article, jointly authored with E. Geçkinli and H. O◊zbal, "A Brief Survey of Anatolian Metallurgy Prior to 500 b.c.," appeared in Archaeometry 94. The Proceedings of the 29th International Symposium on Archaeometry , S. Demirci, A. M. Özer, G. D. Summers, eds. (Ankara 1996), pp. 375-91; and another article, jointly authored with P. Jett, M. Adriaens, "Silver and Copper Artifacts from Ancient Anatolia," appeared in the Journal of Metals 47/5 (1995): 70-72. Two articles appeared in Turkish in XVI. Kaz1 Sonuçlar1 Toplant1s1 (1995) 177-88, and XVII. Kaz1 Sonuçlar1 Toplant1s1 (1996). Yener is now working on the completion of her book entitled The Domestication of Metals: The Rise of Complex Metal Industries in Anatolia (c. 4500-2000 b.c.) to be published by the Smithsonian Institution Press.

The last season of excavations of Kestel mine and its mortuary chamber will take place during the summer of 1996. Another exploratory season in the Amuq will take place in September and October. Our task this year will be to enhance the environmental arm of the project by taking pollen cores from the bed of the dried out Lake of Antioch in collaboration with a team from Holland. Tell Kurdu, which we hope to excavate in 1997, will be intensively surveyed and a topographical map will be created in preparation for the next season.

Revised: February 7, 2007

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