Hurriyet Daily News, Turkey
Feb 8 2014
Artifacts from ancient site Ani on view at Kars Museum
KARS – Anadolu Agency
Objects unearthed during excavations in the ancient Ani, as well as
metal work, glass work and coins are on display at the Kars Museum
Ancient pieces that have been unearthed since 1965 during excavations
at the ancient site of Ani, which is located between the border of
Armenia and the eastern Turkish province of Kars, are being displayed
at the Kars Museum. The pieces date back to at least 2,000 years ago.
Kars Museum Director Necmettin Alp said the ancient site of Ani was
the first trade city from the Caucasus to the entrance of Anatolia and
therefore it had international significance.
He said the pieces unearthed in Ani, one of the most important ancient
sites in Turkey, were covering an area of 85 hectares, adding, `Ani
had a population of 20,000 people and trade vas very active there.
Life continued in the ancient city until the 15th century. During this
time, mosques, churches, baths, palaces, structures of civil
architecture examples and castles had been built within a
five-kilometer long city wall.’
Alp noted the whole ancient city was a first-degree archaeological
area and continued, `Its vicinity was also declared as a third-degree
archaeological area. Excavations have been continuing there since
1965. Earthenware pieces found during these excavations, metal work,
glass work and coins are on display at the Kars Museum. Excavations
started in 1965 with Professor Kemal Baltan are still ongoing. Between
1989 and 2004, Professor Beyhan KaramaÄ?aralÄ± maintained excavations.
Since 2005, work continued under the leadership of Professor YaÅ?ar
Çoruhlu for five years. The Kars Museum Directorate has also been
leading the excavations since 2001.’
Alp said archaeological excavations had been completed at the Ancient
Road, Ebu Manucehr Mosque, the Seljuk Bath and PolatoÄ?lu Church in
Ani, and for this year’s excavations, they had determined a new area
close to the BostanlÄ± River outside the city walls.
He said thousands of objects unearthed in Ani were in the museum.
`During the first three-year excavation term, between 1965 and 1967,
Balkan brought more than a thousand pieces. KaramaÄ?aralÄ± brought a
similar number of objects over the 16 years. New ones were also
brought to the museum after 2005. Now, the museum is home to thousands
of pieces. These pieces are from the early Bronze Age, 5,000 years
ago. The closest objects to our day dates back to 1,500 years ago.
They are earthenware and metal work.’