Konya Neolithic Site of Çatalhöyük

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First Settlement of History

It is near Küçükköy, which is connected to Çumra district of Konya province. It is 10 kilometers east of Cumra District and 48 kilometers from the city center.   

It was discovered by J. Melleart in 1958, excavations were carried out in 1961-1963-l965, and 13 building floors were uncovered. The earliest settlement floor is dated to 6800 B.C and the latest settlement floor is dated to 5500 B.C. The best-known period of urban planning in Çatalhöyük is on the 7th and 2nd floors. The houses are in a quadrangular plan and their walls are adjacent to each other. There is no common wall. Every house has a separate wall. The houses were planned separately and another house was built next to it as needed. There are no streets in the city due to the fact that the houses are adjacent. Transportation is provided over the flat roofs. The entrances to the houses are also made with wooden stairs through a hole that opens to the roofs. In addition, the houses are clustered around a sacred house. There is no fortification wall bordering the city.

Adobe, wood, and cane were used as building materials. The thickness of the walls varies according to the size of the adobe bricks (50-80 centimeters). While the walls of the houses with a low foundation depth were built with adobe, the beams on the arbors placed between them support the flat ceiling. The ceiling covering is clay soil compacted on the cane.

Each house, which is one story, consists of one room and one warehouse. The rooms have rectangular ovens with raised edges. On the front parts of the walls, there are sections 10-30 centimeters high from the base slab. There are also rectangular niches on the wall. These walls are plastered. After the plasters were painted white, pictures were made in yellow, red, and black colors. In addition, deer, bull, and ram heads were applied to the walls by canning with compressed clay.

Among the remains of this period, the Mother Goddess figurines, which are the Symbol of Fertility, remained the same as an extension of the culture, passed from tribe to tribe, and continued to function by changing their name and shape. These figurines provide original information about the beliefs of the era. These figurines, made of terracotta or stone, were depicted as fat, with large breasts, big hips and occasionally giving birth. The multiplicity of births is a symbol of the fact that a tribe is crowded and therefore strong. In addition, stamp seals made of terracotta are documents of the fact that the modern concept of property began in this era. Stamp seals are in round and oval forms and there are geometric motifs on the stamp face.

The materials of the tools in Çatalhöyük are stone, terracotta, wood, bone, obsidian, and Firestone. Food and beverage containers, piercing and cutting tools, and ornaments were made from these materials, and as a result of the excavations, they were recovered in large quantities. It is understood from the material recovered that sharp-pointed flint stones were placed on the concave parts of some animal horns and used as sickles. We understand from these finds that Neolithic man was engaged in farming, which is the basis of his settled order, as well as gathering and hunting.

Excavations at Çatalhöyük, which had been interrupted for a long time, were resumed in 1993 by the British Institute of Archeology with a 25-year project under the chairmanship of Ian HODDER, and the project was completed in 2017. Excavations continue under the Presidency of Konya Museum Directorate under the scientific consultancy of Associate Professor Çiler ÇİLINGİROĞLU in 2018-2019 and Associate Professor Ali Umut TÜRKCAN as of 2020.


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Konya Neolithic Site of Çatalhöyük Küçükköy Mah. Çumra/KONYA
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