The Cultural Heritage of Hittite Anatolia
An International and Interdisciplinary Project for a

Hittite Historical Atlas

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Locations: Plain (Ova) River bank , Province: Kahramanmaraş , Village: Karahüyük

Inventory No 35
Old Name
Ancient Name
Highly Probable Ancient Name Lawazantiya
Latitude N 38° 15.749
Longitude E 37° 06.841
Elevation 1146
Species Mound (Höyük)
Type Settlement
Height 9
Width 224
Lenght 295
Area 66080
Periods Middle Bronze Age I Karum ~2000/1950-1700
Middle Bronze Age II Old Hittite ~1650-1550/1500
Late Bronze Age I Middle Hittite ~1550/1500-1350
Late Bronze Age II Imperial Hittite ~1350-1150
Iron Age I ~1150-900
Iron Age II ~900-

Location and geographical Features



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Nearest Ancient Road

Survey Findings Having been excavated in 1940s, Elbistan-Karahöyük contains levels dating to Hittite culture. The mound is important in this respect. The wares revealed in levels dating to Hittite Imperial Period in Elbistan-Karahöyük carry the characteristics of central Hittite region with regards to groups of form and show reflections of pottery culture formed in peripheral areas. In addition to some red slipped examples of simple and internally thickened vessels and plates which are called as drab-ware in literature, there are also pieces of pottery which are without slip and buff and pinkish cream slipped at times or in fabric color (Konyar 2008c; 2009a; 2009b). Examples of necked vase and jar with everted rim, high body and flat base, and fragments of pottery with externally thickened rim and spherical body were detected in the mound. There are also examples of good burnished and red slipped pottery. Examples with strong parallels to painted band decorated pottery encountered in central Hittites area and in levels dating to Elazığ-Malatya District were collected from the same mounds. Regarding the concern on the reliability of survey finds, we may say that some of the paint decorated pottery had parallels to paint decorated pottery of Old Hittite Period. Proto-Imperial, Late Hittite and Middle Iron Age pottery could not be adequately identified in this region. Besides this, it may be though that form groups of Hittite Imperial pottery culture locally maintained its presence in this period in both Elbistan-Afşin Plain and plains at the south of Maraş. Pottery revealed in levels from Elbistan-Karahöyük Proto-Imperial Period called as Late Hittite Period is important for identification of Middle Iron Age pottery culture (Özgüç 1949). In addition to the stele found in Elbistan-Karahöyük and two hieroglyphic ones in Izgın, the lion sculptures encountered around Elbistan (Eralp 1995) are indicators of this period. And also, the Hierogliphic Rock Inscription detected by us in 2009 took its place as a new finding in literature (Konyar 2010). Hittite ceramics also maintain its place in Iron Ages with some small variations. Painted band decorated pottery with geometrical, grid, grill, hatching patterns show Iron Age features. Especially some of the painted ceramics we collected in Yassıhöyük has parallels with Hittite type painted pottery by surface treatment, form and decoration features. The hierogliphic stele revealed in the same layer gives clues with regards to location. The stele found as in situ in Elbistan-Karahöyük is generally dated to 1200-1000 BC. In the inscription, it is written that this stele was built for the memory of ‘’Great King’’ and in the honor of ‘’Storm God’’. By looking at the statement of ‘’Great King’’, we can say that the stele belonged to the King Tarhuntassa or one of the kings of Carcemish who laid claims to the heirdom of Hittite Kingdom and defined themselves as great kings (Hawkins 2000: 287).


  Filled by (21.10.2012 01:02:09)
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