Building memories: commemorative deposits at Çatalhöyük

Nerissa RUSSELL, Louise MARTIN & Katheryn C. TWISS

en Anthropozoologica 44 (1) - Pages 103-128

Published on 06 July 2009

This article is a part of the thematic issue Zooarchaeology and the reconstruction of cultural systems: Case studies from the Old World

Neolithic Çatalhöyük, Turkey, is well known for its incorporation of animal parts into architecture: bucrania, horns in benches, etc. We examine the less visible placement of items in pits or built into remodeling inside houses to commemorate particular events. Animal parts feature prominently in these deposits, typically found under platforms on the south and west of the house, while human burials are usually in the north and east. We examine the range of contents of these commemorative deposits in relation to other lines of evidence regarding the consumption and meanings of animals at Çatalhöyük.


Zooarchaeology, ritual, Neolithic, Anatolia, Çatalhöyük.

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