1st century AD

The cities along the Black Sea coast quickly developed into commercial centers, which was not only an important economic factor for the mixed Indigenous-Hellenic population, but also supplied the surrounding nomads with goods from settled craftsmen. Above all, the nomadic elites got coveted luxury and prestige objects at the commercial centers of the cities in the Bosporan Empire. In part, the aristocracy, once living in the steppe, seems to have settled and been buried even in the cities, or at least near the city. This also applies to the young woman of 25-30 who was buried in the cemetery of Ust’-Al’ma in the Crimea in tomb 620 in a tree coffin. Next to her was another burial of a male dead man in the tomb. The funeral dates to the third quarter of the 1st century AD and was fortunately not robbed unlike many other tombs. What is remarkable about the Necropolis of Ust’-Al’ma is that urban burial culture in catacombs is associated with clearly nomadic customs in the form of specific offerings. The dead from grave 620 led as a member of the upper social class certainly not a nomadic life, but was buried close to the city. However, their clothing and headgear, the adornments applied to them and the addition of horse harnesses clearly refer to nomadic traditions and design features.

Here you can find the equipment of the burial from Ust ‘Al’ma.

Loboda, Ivan I., Aleksandr E. Puzdrovskij und Jurij P. Zajcev (2002): „Prunkbestattungen des 1. Jh. n. Chr. in der Nekropole Ust’-Al’ma auf der Krim.“ Eurasia Antiqua 8: 295-346

Крупа, Т.Н. (2007): Исследование археологического текстиля из раскопок позднескифского Усть-Альминского могильника.

Puzdrovskij, Alexandr (2013): „Ust’-Al’ma. Die Siedlung und Nekropole.“ In: LVR-LandesMuseum Bonn (Hg.): Goldene Insel im Schwarzen Meer. Die Krim. Darmstadt: Primus Verlag, 290-323