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Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia


The Vinkovci City Museum has confirmed that two rare Avar graves dating to the turn of the 7th to the 8th century have been unearthed by archaeologists in the city cemetery of Vinkovci, eastern Croatia.

Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia
Credit: Ivan Bosancic, Facebook



Workers expanding the Roman Catholic Cemetery of Vinkovci to make room for more burial plots discovered a grave made of old tiles and notified archaeologists from the city museum. The tile cist grave with a tile tent roof was found to contain the skeletal remains of an adult. A bronze belt buckle found inside the tomb dated the find to the the turn of the 7th to the 8th century, the Avar period. 

Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia
Credit: Ivan Bosancic, Facebook

“So far, no Avar graves have been found in the Vinkovci area, although it is known that the Avars resided in the area. When looking at the masonry of the grave we found, it turns out that the Avars saw the Romans burying themselves, so they made their own copies of Roman graves,” said archaeologist of the Vinkovci City Museum, Anita Rapan-Papeša.

Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia
Credit: Ivan Bosancic, Facebook



In addition to the walled cist grave, archaeologists have also explored an ordinary earthen grave, in which a warrior and his horse were found. “The horseman was robbed, but not the horse which the looters did not touch. Judging by the equipment we found on the horse, it is quite a rare find. We came across a saddle and bronze ornaments on parts of the skull, of which so far only about a dozen have been found in the area of the Pannonian Avars, that is, a state that spread in the territory of Central Europe between the 6th and 8th centuries,” said Anita Rapan-Papeša.

Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia
Credit: Ivan Bosancic, Facebook

Rapan-Papeša noted that the boundary of the protected archaeological zone in Vinkovci passes through the middle of the field where the Avar graves appeared and they are the westernmost graves in the area of the former Roman city of Cibalae.


Two Avar warrior graves found in Croatia
Credit: Ivan Bosancic, Facebook

Five more Avar graves remain to be explored, and as work continues to expand the Vinkovci City Cemetery, further archaeological research will be conducted.


TANN

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