Central Turkish dig site reaches back 5,500 years

By Tarkan Demir

ESKISEHIR, Turkey (AA) – In central Turkey, a 35-person team is busy excavating a site that dates back some 5,500 years.

Archaeological remains unearthed in Kulluoba, in Seyitgazi in the central Eskisehir province, show that the site was inhabited continuously from 3500 BC until 1900 BC.

Professor Turan Efe of Bilecik University in northwestern Turkey, who heads the excavation team, told Anadolu Agency that Kulluoba gives the impression that the first steps towards urban building styles were taken there.

"The most important indicator of this is the gradual emergence of independent buildings belonging to the public," Efe said.

He added that they also uncovered evidence of the existence of a land road between Mesopotamia, the ancient region extending from Iraq into present-day southeastern Turkey, to the city of Troy, in modern-day Canakkale, in northwestern Turkey.

This showed that the cultural and commercial ties in 2400-2200 BC — part of the Bronze Age — were established not by sea, as it is generally thought, but by using a land route, he added.

Efe called this road the "Great Caravan Route."

Sennur Azade, an Eskisehir culture and tourism official, said that this year the state Culture Ministry provided 90,000 Turkish liras ($15,000) for the excavation.

Azade said a vessel that apparently held human tears was found during the excavations, calling the discovery "exciting."

"The findings are being exhibited at the Eskisehir Eti Archaelogical Museum," she added.

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