Archaeologists discovered burials of the Pazyryk culture at the Taldur II site near Old Beltir village, Russia’s Altai Republic. One of the grave mounds at the site contained the remains of an adult and a child with their heads cut off and places near the knees of the older individual.
The tomb contained remains of an adult and a child, probably a teenager, of yet unrecognised gender. They were equipped for the afterlife with warm fur clothes, bronze mirrors, and ceramic vessels. But the decapitation evidence is what makes this burial unique, as it is different to anything seen before from the Pazyryk culture’s graves.
Among this Siberian culture’s burials, inhumations without heads are quite common. The reason for this was most possibly trauma during fighting and wars. The experts say that there was a widespread practice in which bowls were made of the heads of defeated enemies to eat from them. But the newly discovered burial is different as the cut off heads were buried with the bodies.
The child burial also is unique as previously no such decapitated body was found. It was discussed whether this situation was not a result of grave robbing, but the anatomical order of the skeletons and presence of grave goods testifies against this theory.
Further analysis of the skeletal material is scheduled. The gender, approximate age at the time of death, bone trauma and suffered diseases should be revealed and shed more light on the life of these individuals.
(after The Siberian Times)