Unique burial of young Amazon female warrior in Kherson region of Ukraine


Kurgan 5 near the village of Zelene on the left, eastern bank of the Dnieper River in the Kherson region of Ukraine stands out among the great number of Scythian Amazons’ burials in the area. According to Dr. Olena Fialko, the mound of a teenage girl was the main mound of the kurgan. The girl’s outfit consisted of a spear, a javelin, scale armor, three stones for a sling, a mirror, a quern with a wooden beater, and a necklace with glass beads. The scale armor discovered in the mound is the first case when such heavy defensive armor was found in the Amazon’s funerary inventory. In archaeologists’ opinion, the scale armor belonged to the type represented on the famous Golden Comb from Solokha Royal Kurgan. The lower part of the headdress of the girl was decorated with eleven alternating golden plates: the horizontal had representations of a hare on them, the vertical ones – griffins. The entrance to the mound was blocked with a threefold barrier – first were two layers of wooden “shields” followed by heavy stones piled one on another.

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On the same line with the central burial just described were two side graves of other girls who had only glass beads and one and three arrows with them. In Dr. Filako’s opinion, the two lightly armed girls from the lateral graves undoubtedly played the role of guards when crossing to another world. “Judging by the layout, an Amazon with two servants were buried in this kurgan. This confirms the evidence of ancient authors, who claim that Amazons were trained the military affairs from early childhood. The kurgan is unique because there were no other warriors in full ammunition in an array of Scythian monuments.”

3 – Bronze mirror with iron handle; 4 – Wooden grinder; 5 – iron clasp; 6 – stones for sling; 7 – stone plate; 8 – iron knife with bone handle; 9 – iron handles; 10 – spike of an iron javelin; 11 – spike of an iron spear.

More on the Scythians in the territory of present-day Ukraine in the book “Royal Scythia, Greece, Kyiv Rus“. 

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