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Dick Osseman | all galleries >> Uşak town and its museum >> The Uşak archaeological museum > Usak 17062012_2141.jpg
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Usak 17062012_2141.jpg
17-Jun-2012 Dick Osseman

Usak 17062012_2141.jpg

Wall paintings from the Aktepe tumulus. The tumulus’ grave chamber was discovered by chance by smugglers in 1968, but actually was robbed in ancient times. The smugglers chiseled pictures they saw on the wall on two side of the chamber for YTL 40.000. These pictures had been created using paints from roots and soil, representing a ceremony for the deceased. Tomb wall paintings are very rare in Anatolia, unfortunately the Aktepe tumulus ones suffered a lot of damage.
The Wikipedia has more. I quote: “In the middle of the 6th century BCE, the Achaemenid Persian Empire, led by Cyrus the Great, conquered most of the polities that existed at that time across western Anatolia, most notably the Lydian kingdom of Croesus. [….] For half a century before the Persians invaded, the Lydians of west-central Anatolia had been burying their rulers in stone chamber tombs under monumental tumulus burial markers, a form borrowed in part from the Phrygians. Although the Lydian tumuli become smaller after the Persian invasion, they also become more numerous. Thus a local burial tradition was allowed to continue, but with changes based on outside influences. […] Two of the known tombs of Lydian Tumuli had painted walls. Unfortunately, looting and destruction of the tombs, as well as the subsequent dispersal of the paintings and objects on the art market has significantly limited the scientific investigation of these tombs. The […] Lydian tumulus, called Aktepe and located in modern Uşak province, has two human figures painted on opposite walls of the tomb chamber. They flank and face towards where the body would have lay. Their gestures include holding a branch towards the body with one hand and holding the other hand before their mouths, possibly as a sign of silent reverence. They appear to wear Greek-style clothing. Moving to the southeast edge of Lydia, we find a wooden tomb chamber from the Tatarlı tumulus near Dinar in modern Afyon province. The panels of this tomb were painted and include a scene of battling soldiers that is reminiscent of Greek vase painting.”

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