Ancient Tomb Discovered Beneath Arshakunyats Street in Yerevan

Ancient Tomb Discovered Beneath Arshakunyats Street in YerevanDuring construction works in the territory of a former factory “Avtoagregat” located on Arshakunyats Street in Yerevan, an ancient tomb of the period of the Kingdom of Van was accidentally discovered. The entrance to the tomb was found during pipe laying.

Simon Hmayakyan, one of the archaeologists participating in the excavations, told that pottery, burial vessels, belts, and other items were discovered in the tomb.

“At the site of the excavations, where the Yerevan Mall trade center now stands, items dated back to Middle Chalcolithic and Early Iron Age were found. The form of the tomb reminds a small stone-framed chapel with a tuff roof,” said Hmayakyan.

The investigation of this tomb will allow experts to get an idea of the funerary rituals of the Kingdom of Van, where every estate has supposedly had its own burial rites.

“In the Kingdom of Van, 18 burial rites have existed. Most commonly, the deceased were positioned in a fetus pose and buried in a sarcophagus, a vessel, or straight in the ground,” remarked Hmayakyan.

Of special interest is the rite of the burial of women, said Hmayakyan. Women have been buried along with their personal items such as needles and makeup, while men have been buried with weapons, saddles, etc.

This particular tomb of the time period of the Kingdom of Van has been supposedly dedicated to an individual of high social class, though no gold or silver was discovered at the site. According to Hmayakyan, people of the kingdom appreciated more the aesthetic value of their items rather than their prices.

“For example, during the construction of Erebuni, King Argishti presented the city with a statue built from wood,” told Hmayakyan. All the discovered artifacts are today showcased in the Erebuni Museum while the tomb itself only features their copies.

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