Project

INQUA project 1804S. MEZHYRICH INTERNATIONAL ARCHAEOLOGY SUMMER SCHOOL : interdisciplinary study of a Late Pleistocene site

Goal: The Mezhyich international archaeology summer school is dedicated to young scientists, especially PhD students and post-graduate early career researchers, from Ukraine and France.
The summer school will also provide complementary training activities to Master students of the Department of Archаeology and Museology of the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and from the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Master “Quaternary and Prehistory”.

Date: 15 July 2018

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Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
In the basin of the Middle Dnieper and its tributaries, a large number of Upper Palaeolithic sites and palaeontological deposits have been uncovered. The archaeological settlements are attributed to various chronological and cultural complexes: Gravettian, Epi-Aurignacian, Epigravettian, and Final Palaeolithic. A part of Epigravettian vestiges refers to the Mezhyrichian type of industry, and is dated to the rather limited time span of 15–13 ka 14C uncal. BP. The conducted typological-technological analysis of lithic assemblages allows us to assert the unity of processing techniques within this type. Such technological, territorial, and chronological unity of sites represents the remnants of activity of single society. These objects have different functional and seasonal characteristics, which offer the unique opportunity to reconstruct certain aspects of life, seasonal mobility cycles, and group hunting strategies within a common ecological niche. The spatial distribution of sites and objects indicates the presence of a logistic structure of seasonal mobility, which manifests itself at different hierarchical levels: dwelling, residential assemblage, base camp, and subsistence territory. The base camps were mainly settled during the cold season, while during the warm season there was a wider activity associated with topographically high relief areas. Key words: Upper Palaeolithic, Eastern Epigravettian, Mezhyrichian, mammoth bone dwelling, seasonal mobility, lithic assemblage.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
На основі використання археологічних матеріалів розглянуто господарсько-культурний тип мисливців на мамонтів, що побутував на теренах басейну Дніпра в часи останнього зледеніння, в епоху пізнього палеоліту. Описано природне оточення первісної людини, особливості господарства, матеріальної культури, суспільної організації та проблеми реконструкції світоглядних уявлень мисливських колективів. Для студентів гуманітарних і природничих спеціалізацій, а також буде цікавим для фахівців археологів, істориків первісності, краєзнавців та дослідників історико-культурної спадщини України.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
З 2010 р. дослідження на пам'ятці проводяться експедицією кафедри археології та музеєзнавства Київського національного університету імені Тараса Шевченка спільно із спеціалістами з Національного природничого музею м. Париж, ІА НАН України та інших наукових і освітніх установ України і ЄС. За ці роки вдалося дослідити низку об'єктів, що відносяться до різних господарсько-побутових комплексів стоянки, отримати представницькі серії виробів з кременю, кістки, бивня, а також колекції фауністичних решток пізньоплейстоценових тварин. Особливу увагу протягом означеного часу було приділено об'єктам, які мають різну функціональну специфіку і відображають різні аспекти життєдіяльності мешканців стоянки.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
The Upper Palaeolithic settlement of Mezhyrich is located on the territory of Mezhyrich village of Kaniv district, Cherkasy region. The settlement is located on the cape formed by the valleys of the rivers Ros’ and Rosava. Palaeolithic cultural layers of the site lies 2.5—3 m below the modern surface. The site is radiocarbon dated to 15—14.3 kyr BP. using bones of several animal species, including mammoth. The remains of the structures and objects are well-preserved in the cultural layer, they contain bone, antler and ivory. In the last years pit 6 is household object of a particular interest. It belongs to the second household unit and is situated to the south of the second dwelling’s structure. The microstratigraphic studies of the object indicate three episodes of sediment occumulation in the pit, which correspond to the three cultural horizons of the site. As a result of the excavation we have a bright series of bone, tusk and antler artifacts. According to the cross-sections of the north and east walls, the pit is a lens-shaped (lens-like) depression with a diameter of about two meters and a depth of one meter. There were large mammoth bones by the edges of its filling. For the study we have chosen samples of osteological material which bear traces of human processing. As a result of the zooarchaeological analysis several main categories of the material were chosen (identified): blanks of mammoth ribs, bone tools of long bones of small/medium-sized mammals and ornaments of teeth. It allowed to find out some technological traits and to deepen the understanding of household and everyday life of Upper Palaeolithic hunters-gatherers from the Mezhyrich site. The study of the collection allows to widen the description of this site and to conclude about the life of its inhabitants. Стаття присвячена історії дослідження та опису остеологічного матеріалу з гоподарської ями 6 Межиріцької пізньопалеолітичної стоянки. На основі вивчення архівних матеріалів про поперед-ні розкопки, а також безпосереднього дослідження вмісту заповнення об'єкту, подається узагальнений опис фауністичних решток. Особливу увагу приді-лено знахідкам кісток та бивню, які мають сліди цілеспрямованої людської обробки. У результаті застосування археозоологічного та технологічного аналізів було виділено кілька основних категорій оброблених предметів з органічних матеріалів. Це дозволило виявити деякі технологічні тенденції та поглибити розуміння господарства і побуту палеолітичних мисливців Межиріцької стоянки.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
Mezhyrich is an Epigravettian open air base camp, in the Middle Dnieper basin, dated to 14.9-14,3 ka 14 C BP. During the second stage of research from 1976 to 1989 an international group of specialists under supervision of M. Gladkikh-the Head of the Department of Archaeology, Ethnography and Museology of T. Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, carried out the excavations and interdisciplinary research of the site. As the result in 1976 fourth mammoth bone dwelling and a field objects around it were opened. The fourth dwelling was partially excavated and left in place for the purpose of a future museumification. An exploration of the cultural layer of the dwelling unit revealed a number of interesting finds and field objects. The stratigraphic sections within this trench revealed several stages of functioning of this object and several layers of human activity. Since 2018, the Dwelling 4 has been explored by an expedition involving organizations such as the Department of Archeology and Museum Studies at Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv (P. Shydlovskyi), National Museum of Natural History, France (S. Péan) with the involvement specialists in the field of zooarchaeology, geology, geomorphology, etc. As the current state of affairs requires a new description of the dwelling elements, one of the goals of the 2018-2019 study was to conduct stationary studies of the filling of the dwelling. This works have to be continue in order to obtain data on structural features and the degree of preservation of cultural remains inside the dwelling, and to carry out restoration work to provide a basis for future museumification of the object.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
It is possible to find out the continuity or discontinuity of the processes during the transitional periods with the involvement of the data of several related disciplines, in this case - the prehistoric archaeology and paleogeography. The dramatic changes in the landscape and climatic situation on the border of the Pleistocene - Holocene were undoubtedly a major factor in the process of settling the territory of the Middle Dnieper.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
В процесі дослідження траншеї, що розташована по довгій осі, у заповненні житла виявлено дві функціонально різні ділянки обабіч центральної частини з залишками вогнища. Культурні рештки в південно-західній ділянці свідчать про проведення тут операцій по обробці хутра та шкіри, в той час як в північно-східній частині траншеї наявні яскраві свідчення проведення операцій по обробці крем'яної сировини та виготовлення знарядь праці. Такий функціональний розподіл між різними секторами всередині житла може вказувати на наявність специфічних виробничих місць у різних представників первісної сім'ї.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
Mezhyrich is an Epigravettian open air base camp, in the Middle Dnieper basin, dated to 14.9-14,3 ka 14C BP. During the second stage of research from 1976 to 1989 an international group of specialists under supervision of M. Gladkykh - the Head of the Department of Archaeology, Ethnography and Museology of National University of Kiev, carried out the excavations and interdisciplinary research of the site. As the result in 1976 fourth mammoth bone dwelling and a field object around it was opened. The fourth dwelling was partially excavated and left in place for the purpose of a future museumification. As the current state of affairs requires a new description of the dwelling elements, one of the goals of the 2018-2019 study was to conduct stationary studies of the filling of the dwelling. Research works in 2018-2019 were carried out within the framework of State Fund for Fundamental Research project №Ф77/38811 "Mezhyrich site of mammoth hunters: archaeological research and museumification", and INQUA project 1804S. “MEZHYRICH INTERNATIONAL ARCHAEOLOGY SUMMER SCHOOL : interdisciplinary study of a Late Pleistocene site”. The latter project supported the exchange of experience between scientists from various scientific and educational institutions and the training of young scientists and students with modern methods of recording and interpreting archaeological finds.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
25th Annual Meeting of Eyropean Association of Archaeologists hosted approx. 2000 delegates and held 170 sessions on wide-ranging topics, divided into six broad themes: 1. Archaeological theory and methods beyond paradigms 2. Interpreting the archaeological record: artefacts, humans, and landscapes 3. Archaeology of mountainous landscapes 4. Digital archaeology, science and multidisciplinarity: new methods, new challenges 5. Archaeological heritage and museum management: future chances, future risks 6. Global change and archaeology
Marharyta Chymyrys
added a research item
Завдяки мікростратиграфічним дослідженням з'ясовано, що яма 6 ГПК 2 була утворена тоді, коли четвертого ГПК ще не існувало, що може бути свідченням відносної хронології об'єктів та поступового розвитку планувальної структури всієї стоянки. Видається, що другий ГПК старший за перший за часом утворення, однак це не виключає синхронного функціонування об'єктів, адже найактивніша господарська діяльність на другому ГПК (потужний шар Z-2 ями 6) кореспондується з часом побудови четвертого житла (прошарок То-2). Публікація містить результати досліджень, проведених при грантовій підтримці Державного фонду фундаментальних досліджень за конкурсним проектом Ф77/82 2017.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
During the 2018 Summer School project implementation, which took place during field work in Mezhyrich within the framework of the Ukrainian State Fund for Fundamental Research project (No. F77/82-2017) named "Mezhyrich mammoth-hunters' settlement: archaeological research and museum studies", student training and research were conducted, as well as several trips and excursions to other Pleistocene locations of the Middle Dnieper region.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
Taking into account the micro-stratigraphical context, the origin and history of pit no. 6 setting up can be reconstructed. It is interpreted as a dug structure, filled with both stored rough products and midden made of butchery, artefact processing and hearth fuel waste. In comparing with the chronological framework of different dwelling areas, this study contributes to better understand the development processes of settlement dynamics in Mezhyrich camp site and modalities of Epigravettian subsistence behaviours in a mammoth bone dwelling settlement.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
The 2018 Mezhyrich International Archaeology Summer School, which took place from 15 to 30 July, was dedicated to young scientists in archaeology, especially Master students, PhD students and post-graduate early career researchers, from the following institutions of Ukraine and France: Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv, National University "Kyiv-Mohyla Academy", Institute of Archaeology NAS of Ukraine, Museum National d'Histoire Naturelle in Paris. In the frame of an international field expedition, students were able to learn modern methods related to field work, analyses and interpretation of Upper Palaeolithic materials: methods of archaeological materials analysis, sampling, lithic industry analysis, preservation and storage of faunal materials and interdisciplinary analyses including geology, zooarchaeology and palynology.
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added an update
Pavlo Shydlovskyi, Stephane Pean, Laurent Crepin, Ostap Tsvirkun
 
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
On the territory of the Kaniv-Cherkassy part of Dnieper basin, a considerable number of Upper Palaeolithic sites and paleontological finds of the late Pleistocene fauna are known, among which particular importance have the settlements with the remains of dwellings using mammoth bones in the building - Mezhyrich, Hintsi and Dobranichivka. In the past few years, in the course of research of the territory of the Kaniv-Cherkassy region, a number of localities of the late Pleistocene time were discovered, which are represented by the paleontological findings of the mammoth fauna (Kuliabivka, Neterebky, Vel. Yablunivka) and sites with lithic inventory (Bezpalche, Buchak), relating to different Upper Palaeolithic industry traditions. The Gravettian group which includes the locations of Buchak, Shushvalivka, Mozoliivka and Pronozivka is quite distinctly allocated. The flint materials of these sites are quite close to such settlements as Kyrylivska, Kliusy, Pushkari I, which spread on the territory of the Middle Dnieper and Desna region within the limits of 22-19 kyr. B.P. Another group, represented by kill-sites, short-term and base camps, united into Mezhyrich culture sites, the similarity of which is traced in the technical and typological characteristics of the lithic assemblages, the bone industry, in the architecture and settlement structure of the basic camps. According to the latest data, the Mezhyrich version of the Epigravettian was distributed on this territory in rather narrow limits of 15 - 14 kyr. B.P. The topographic and geographic location of these sites allows us to reconstruct the features of the hydrosystem and landscape in the territory of the Middle Dnieper at the end of the Pleistocene. These localities mark the main banks of the Pra-Dnieper, whose drainage was carried out from the Middle Desna River, through the Trubezh valley, and the estuary of the Supii. In cultural terms, the sites of the Kaniv-Cherkassy region show a vivid connection with the Gravettian and Epigravettian complexes of Desna region. Such spatial distribution of technological complexes of the Upper Palaeolithic, along with common features in the bone industry, architecture, and settlement structure, makes it possible to state that there was a direct link between the sites of Kaniv-Cherkassy and Desna regions by the high left-bank terrace of the Pra-Dnieper. Publication is based on the research provided by the grant support of the State Fund for Fundamental Research (project N Ф77/38811) and with the support of INQUA project 1804S ‘Mezhyrich International Archaeology Summer School, interdisciplinary study of a late Pleistocene site’. Key words: Upper Palaeolithic, Middle Dnieper area, Gravettian, Epigravettian, Late Pleistocene
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a research item
Межиріцькою експедицією Кафедри археології та музеєзнавства Київського національного університету ім. Т. Шевченка за підтримки Hugo Obermaier Society for Quaternary Research and Archaeology of the Stone Age в межах проекту «Raw material and technological traditions of Middle Dnieper river basin in Upper Paleolithic times» здійснено розвідки в Черкаській та Київській областях з метою виявлення в Середньому Подніпров'ї нових пізньопалеолітичних пунктів. Наслідком досліджень стало відкриття чотирьох місцезнаходжень крем'яних виробів палеолітичного вигляду (Безпальче-Шлях, Паламарі; Бучак) та трьох пунктів знахідок пізньоплейстоценової фауни (Кулябівка, Нетеребки, Велика Яблунівка).
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added an update
Since 2010, a Ukrainian-French expedition, led by P. Shydlovskyi (Dpt of Archaeology and Museology, Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv) in collaboration with S. Péan (UMR 7194 HNHP, Muséum national d’histoire naturelle, Paris) has been excavating the site. Research has been focused on the pits and working areas which surround dwellings nos. 1 and 2. Interdisciplinary studies have been carried out to determine the geological and chrono-stratigraphical setting of the cultural layers, the palynological, microcharcoal, microfauna and malacofauna content, the zooarchaeological interpretation of the mammal bone material yielded from the site, and typo-technological features of the lithic industry (Péan et al., 2015). Mezhyrich
is a unique site to both conduct research, and teach methods of natural sciences in archeology, in the frame of an international archaeology summer school: loessic stratigraphy has been precisely described, cultural layers are very well presereved, representative collections of lithic artifacts, faunal remains and products made of bone, tusk and antler are available.
 
Pavlo Shydlovskyi
added a project goal
The Mezhyich international archaeology summer school is dedicated to young scientists, especially PhD students and post-graduate early career researchers, from Ukraine and France.
The summer school will also provide complementary training activities to Master students of the Department of Archаeology and Museology of the Taras Shevchenko National University of Kyiv and from the Muséum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Master “Quaternary and Prehistory”.