Arslantepe-Malatya: A Prehistoric and Early Historic Center in Eastern Anatolia

Marcella Frangipane

in The Oxford Handbook of Ancient Anatolia

Published in print September 2011 | ISBN: 9780195376142
Published online November 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199940127 | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks

 Arslantepe-Malatya: A Prehistoric and Early Historic Center in Eastern Anatolia

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This article discusses findings from excavations at Arslantepe–Malatya. Arslantepe is a tell about 4.5 hectares in extension and 30 meters high, at the heart of the fertile Malatya Plain, some 12 kilometers from the right bank of the Euphrates, and surrounded by mountains, which, in the past, were covered by forests. In the earliest phases of its history, in the Chalcolithic period, it had close links with the Syro-Mesopotamian world, with which it shared many cultural features, structural models, and development trajectories. But in the early centuries of the third millennium BCE, far-reaching changes took place in the site that halted the development of the Mesopotamian-type centralized system and reoriented Arslantepe's external relations toward eastern Anatolia and Transcaucasia. A further radical change occurred in the second millennium BCE, when the site interacted with the rising Hittite civilization, which exerted a strong influence on it. But it was with the Late Bronze I and, more evidently, Late Bronze II, that the expanding Hittite state, which expanded as far as the banks of the Euphrates, imposed its cultural and political domination over the populations in the Malatya region, heralding another important stage in the history of Arslantepe.

Keywords: excavations; archaeological sites; Malatya Plain; Chalcolithic period; Syro-Mesopotamia; Transcaucasia; Hittite civilization; Late Bronze Age

Article.  8550 words. 

Subjects: Archaeology of the Near East

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