Recent Archaeological Digs Show the Remains of ‘Skull Cult’ in Turkey

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Gobekli Tepe, Turkey
Gobekli Tepe was a place where the people from the Stone Age use to gather around 9,000 years ago. Wikimedia
  • A study by the German Archaeological Institute suggested that Gobekli Tepe was a place of ritualistic significance
  • There were 691 fragments of bones at the site and 408 of them belonged to human skulls
  • There were no signs of decapitation and it was clear that the changes were made shortly after their death

Turkey, July 1, 2017: Gobekli Tepe was a place where the people from the Stone Age use to gather around 9,000 years ago. It was a time long before the kingdoms or the kings use to rule the lands.

A study by the German Archaeological Institute released in the journal ‘Science Advances’ suggested that Gobekli Tepe was a place of ritualistic significance performed by the early humans.

It is inevident that the people who were buried died there, but there were 691 fragments of bones and 408 of them belonged to human skulls. Moreover, according to the study the site also consisted of monolithic T-shaped limestone pillars and a stockpile of limestone sculptures. In fact, the research also shows the signs of deliberate modifications on the skull fragments.

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Deep grooves across the foreheads of the skull were also found and some skulls even had hole drilled into it. It showed the signs that the skulls were put on display so that the visitors could see them hanging. Though there were no signs of decapitation and it was clear that the changes were made shortly after the death of those people.

These kinds of remains were also found in other archaeological sites where the skulls were used to worship and in the ancient cities of Anatolia and Levant.

Anthropologists say that these practices were because people used human skulls for various reasons- some people used to worship ancestors, others thought the dead could protect the living and some groups also used skulls of their animals to display. They refer to these groups as ‘Skull Cults’.

Gobekli Tepe also seems to be one of the oldest skull cults that the researchers have come across till now.

– by Sumit Balodi of NewsGram. Twitter: @sumit_balodi