The archaeological researches of the settlement «Protolche».
Archaeological researches in the southern part of Khortytsia island have been going on for almost two months. The scientists of the nature reserve, together with The Department of Culture of the city, decided to pay their attention to one of the most interesting and simultaneously mysterious sights of the island so called the settlement «Protolche».
Excavations had already been conducted here for 21 years. The scientists established several digging pits to the west of the center of the monument in this season. The chief aim of the research is not the search for placement and even finds, but it is a thorough study of stratigraphy, that is the location and interrelation of chronological layers.
The head of the expedition, Dmitro Kobalia considers that the time to set the record straight has come a long time ago. On the one side, excavations of the second half of the 70s revealed a huge number of objects of the medieval time. On the other side, they begot a bunch of questions to which there were no answers.
First, researchers have recorded several chronological horizons from the 6th to the 16th centuries. But how they relate to each other is still unclear. Until we can clearly imagine, we can tell about the continuous existence of the settlement. We are dealing with several monuments that are not related to each other. But, if this is so, then why did the ancient inhabitants settle in this place over the centuries?
Second, what was the population like? Modern researchers consider the monument cannot be regard exclusive as Slavic because the population of the South of Ukraine, while was mixed and multiethnic. In this sense, D. Kobalia says that it is more correct to talk about the settlement of the Horde period. There are also questions about artifacts that previous researchers have referenced. Most of them are missing from the funds.
So, the most important for us was the study namely of the chronology of the settlement and for this, according to the archaeologist, it is necessary to start from the periphery, areas where the settlement hardly begins. Thanks to this, the possible appears to gradually understand how the layering took a place.
Excavation in 2021 didn't bring “breakthrough” discoveries, but the general picture was gradually becoming clear. There are bases show that the settlement was much larger than previously thought. Some peripheral medieval objects were ound almost a kilometer southwest of its center, namely it stretched along the lakes Domakh and Prognoi. Unfortunately, the higher layers were destroyed in the 21st century. One more result was a confirmation of the availability of an older layer here in the Bronze Age. The first finds in the likeness of fragments of ceramics were found by the general director of the reserve Maxim Ostapenko in 1999. In this year the presence of a layer which saturated with fragments of pots and debris of animals' bones has been confirmed. Thus, you can tell about a new monument of Khortytsia, it is the most southerly settlement of the Bronze Age.
Work continues.

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