The Mysteriously Advanced Civilization Of Bronze Age Russia

“[Russia] is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.” β€”Winston Churchill

In A Nutshell

“Arkaim” is the name given to the strange, eerily barren remains of a once-great, prehistoric settlement that sits on the steppe plains of Russia’s Urals. Once one of an estimated 20 towns, Arkaim pre-dates Troy by around 500 years, and was a flourishing city at the time the pyramids were being built. The site of strange burials, Scythian-style cave paintings, and heaps of folklore, it’s still up for debate as to exactly who these people were.

The Whole Bushel

It wasn’t even known of until the late 1980s, when it was found—like many important archaeological discoveries—quite accidentally. Archaeologists from Chelyabinsk State University had been dispatched to the site of a planned reservoir when two boys working with the dig team went exploring. They returned with the news of some odd embankments they had discovered, in an area where it was thoroughly expected the team would find nothing. In fact, construction on the reservoir had already begun.

The embankments were the remains of Arkaim, a circular, fortified settlement protected by adobe and clay ramparts constructed over a log frame. Roughly 150 meters (500 ft) in diameter, the protected structure also housed 60-odd family dwellings, partially dug out of the Earth and including hearths, cellars, and wells, along with structures to collect and redistribute water. Early metal-works and furnaces were also found in each, allowing each family to smelt their own bronze and tin.

And Arkaim wasn’t the only one of these settlements found. All told, more than 20 of the circular settlements have now been found throughout the southern Urals and northern Kazakhstan, suggesting a widespread civilization with a very set plan for constructing townships: townships that at first glance might seem barren, but have surrendered a number of their secrets to archaeologists.

The civilization was very horse-centric, and early horse-drawn chariots along with decorative tack have been uncovered. Nearby Stone Age cave paintings suggest that the civilizations’ dependence on the horse dates back even further than Arkaim.

Archaeologists also point to the rather odd burial traditions the civilization seems to have had. Many bodies were uncovered that had been buried in the fetal position, and some were uniquely posed. One grave contained the body of a man embracing a woman while she held a battle axe over his head.

One of the things that has long been up for dispute among Russian archaeologists is the migratory paths of groups like the Indo-Europeans and the Indo-Aryans, as well as just how the Persian and Sanskrit languages spread throughout Asia and India. So it’s not entirely surprising that a number of wild theories have sprung up around the Bronze Age towns, all bending the facts just a little bit to fit the legends.

One such theory is that Arkaim is actually about 1,000 years younger than has already been established, making it the homeland of the prophet Zoroaster and the lands where he produced the holy book the Avesta.

Others have cited its circular construction as being parallel to great mythological cities like Asgard and Atlantis, suggesting that it was a race much more advanced than previously thought that actually designed Arkaim and the network of similarly constructed townships spread across the area. Some Russian writers point to the name, which is a combination of the words for sky (“Ark-ha”) and earth (“im”) as a clear sign that the civilizations were advanced, peaceful people, and that all the neolithic cities who share the same circular pattern were originally designed as centers of wisdom and religion.

And, of course, there are still those that insist that the distinctive, circular patterns of the towns—very impressive when viewed from above—were clearly used as an ancient, prehistoric spaceport.

Show Me The Proof

Archaeology and ethnic politics: the discovery of Arkaim
New Dawn Magazine: Arkaim: Russia’s Ancient City & the Arctic Origin of Civilisation
Arkaim: Prehistory on the steppe
Photo credit: ITAR-TASS

  • Atlas

    Aliens. It’s the aliens.

    • edzyl blane

      Nah, time travellers

      • Lisa 39

        Time traveling aliens!

        • Atlas

          Time traveling aliens who are also in cahoots with the Illuminati?

          • Lisa 39

            And have a secret base on the dark side of the moon!

          • Atlas

            Hahaha πŸ™‚

          • Lisa 39

            Did you quit? I thought it was starting to get interesting, like, shapeshiting, time traveling aliens in cahoots with the illuminati with a secret base on the dark side of the moon with spies in the government and entertainment industry who get caught on camera with their eyes changing into their reptilian form, like that video i saw on fb the other day of justin bieber in court!

          • Atlas

            I think I did quit, I was running out of ideas for new conspiracies. I’m a party pooper :P.

          • Lisa 39

            What? You’re 14, you’re supposed to have an overactive imagination, you just got beat by a girl, a mom to boot, and a grandma, ok i’m done teasing you lol maybe you should quit hanging out with us supposedly mature people and get some more ideas from animes or something, i’m still teasing, you’re a good sport atlas! I know you do the virtual school thing, do you like it?

          • Atlas

            Haha I’m 17, but close enough :), and its okay but I’ll be going back to my local highschool for my senior year. The social aspect of cyber school is kind of nonexistent, so I only get to see friends on weekends and holidays, and I enjoy being able to see them daily like I did in public school.

          • Lisa 39

            I’m sorry atlas, i got you confused with someone else, but you should still have an overactive imagination jk, i’m glad you’re going back to school for your senior year, that’s when all the good stuff happens lol are you going to college? Military? Any plans for your future?

          • Atlas

            It’s fine :). I plan on college, hopefully Psychology or Neuroscience, but I like English a lot too, so I’m not 100% sure what i want to do yet.

          • Lisa 39

            My son-in-laws sister spent 8 years in college, her first major was drama but then she changed her mind, the whole starving artist thing, then she changed her mind again, she graduated with alot of letters behind her name (lol) she’s now a college professor who teaches english and writes and sells plays! While she was in college she wrote plays, got funding and directed the plays, she’s proof that anyone can be whatever they want even when winging it!

          • Atlas

            I figure that in the next year I will have narrowed down my options and decided on what I want to do, either way I’m excited for what the future holds!

          • Lisa 39

            Good for you, i remember being excited about the future, you know, back when we rode our dinosaurs to school, barefoot, in the snow, 5 miles, uphill both ways, well you seem to be a very smart young man and i know that you’ll suceed in whatever path you choose, few things to remember, girls are crazy, don’t let them determine your future, everythings harder with a baby, SAY NO TO DRUGS, or you can kiss your future, your ass and your life good bye, listen to all advice, that doesn’t mean you have to use it all (except for mine of course) but its always good to have some extra ideas in case you need a plan b. I think that’s it for now lol

          • Atlas

            Awwww lol thank you very much for the compliments! I will listen to your advice too!

          • Lisa 39

            Your welcome, and i’m glad you’ll listen to me, i would never give a young person with your potential bad advice, i’ve seen your comments and you are smart, not experienced but smart enough to hear what other people are saying, you’ll do well in life, ;), i can’t believe that nobody besides edzyl, you and i showed up here to have fun with this, edzyl made one comment and split and left you stuck with me lol i’m glad we had a private chat tho! I’ll bet their all arguing on the list about wars! Maybe i’ll go laugh at them.

          • Atlas

            This was a good chat! And yes, people are indeed arguing about wars πŸ˜›

          • Patriotic Dane

            *Eavesdropping rudely*

          • Andy West

            I’m watching from behind that tree.

          • lbatfish

            I just turned 60, and I’m still not sure what I’m going to do with my life. In the meantime, I settle for just planning on what to do NEXT. πŸ™‚

          • Andy West

            Topiary?

          • lbatfish

            Either that or poodle-trimming. Or maybe alternate between the two.

          • lbatfish

            You forgot to mention their role in the healthcare.gov rollout . . . .

          • Lisa 39

            Uh oh, i guess i’ll save that for next time lol

        • MissKingdomVII

          The Doctor! Lol!

    • Stranger

      πŸ˜€

      • the big un

        Ha ah love watching that guy on tv he’s a right bowl of soup god knows what his mother was on when carrying him he got a head full of magic that one

  • Scott

    Much like the rest of Central Asia, we can thank Islam and Christianity for doing their best to eradicate anything and everything related to the region’s actual culture.

  • Andy West

    This is how the settlement looks on Google Maps.

    • Blue

      SO they weren’t vagatarians then?……………

      • lbatfish

        Just a wild guess, but did you mean “vaginarians”?

        • Blue

          Nope – the guy above put in two male symbols as in homosexual men, I countered by using a euphemism for lesbians, who are/were known as vagatarians a play on words of vegetarians in my locality, i.e. they only “feast” on ……………………. well you get the point.

          • lbatfish

            Yup, got the point(s), but I hadn’t been aware of the fact that there already WAS such a word. So I guess that’ll teach me to reply to one of your replies without doing some basic research first. πŸ™‚

      • Andy West

        Mainly. but bush tucker was on the menu.

  • Exiled Phoenix

    Tattoine?

    • lbatfish

      I don’t think so — the photos that were dug up at the site showed only one moon.

      • Andy West

        Lol.

  • Ruben Rodriguez

    I love learning things!!