book cover
Download Sample PDF

H 290 x W 205 mm

314 pages

258 figures (colour throughout)

Published Feb 2022

Archaeopress Archaeology


Paperback: 9781803270029

Digital: 9781803270036

Recommend to a librarian

South Caucasus; Armenia; Ararat valley; Neolithic; 6th millennium BC; environment; subsistence economy; material culture; periodization

Related titles

The Neolithic Settlement of Aknashen (Ararat valley, Armenia)

Excavation seasons 2004-2015

Edited by Ruben Badalyan, Christine Chataigner, Armine Harutyunyan

Includes PDF

Open Access
PDF eBook

Add to basket

Add to wishlist

This is the first monograph devoted to the Neolithic period in Armenia. The volume concerns the natural environment, material culture and subsistence economy of the populations of the first half of the 6th millennium BC, who established the first sedentary settlements in the alluvial plain of the Araxes river.



Contents ;
Acknowledgements ;
List of authors ;
Introduction – Ruben Badalyan, Christine Chataigner and Armine Harutyunyan ;

The settlement of Aknashen: stratigraphy and architecture – Ruben Badalyan and Armine Harutyunyan ;
Mortuary practices at Aknashen – Modwene Poulmarc’h, Levon Aghikyan and Françoise Le Mort ;
Tectonic impact on the Ararat Depression during the Late Neolithic: the example of the Aknashen settlement – Arkadi Karakhanyan, Lilit Sahakyan, Ara Avagyan, Andreas Iordanidis and Tatul Stalyan ;
The many geomorphic factors and responses in the reconstruction of the Aknashen landscape – Vincent Ollivier ;
Bayesian analysis of radiocarbon dates from Aknashen – Christine Chataigner, Ruben Badalyan and Armine Harutyunyan ;
The pottery of Aknashen – Armine Harutyunyan ;

Aknashen: techno-typological and functional analysis of the lithic assemblage – Jacques Chabot, Cynthia Gosselin, Patrick Eid and Bastien Varoutsikos ;
Aknashen lithic tradition in a regional context: blade-making and neolithization of the Southern Caucasus – Bastien Varoutsikos and Artur Petrosyan ;
The provenance of the obsidian used at Aknashen – Bernard Gratuze, Ruben Badalyan and Christine Chataigner ;
The macrolithic industry from Aknashen – Caroline Hamon and Khachatur Meliksetian ;
Axes and grooved polishers from Aknashen – Caroline Hamon, Ruben Badalyan and Lilit Sahakyan ;
Neolithic bone tools from Aknashen – Christine Chataigner, Ruben Badalyan and Rozalia Christidou ;
Miscellaneous objects from Aknashen – Ruben Badalyan, Armine Harutyunyan, Khachatur Meliksetian, Ernst Pernicka and Rozalia Christidou ;

Animal subsistence economy at the Neolithic site of Aknashen – Adrian Bălășescu and Valentin Radu ;
Current results of archaeobotanical studies at the Neolithic settlement of Aknashen (Ararat valley – Roman Hovsepyan ;

Conclusion: The Neolithic of the Ararat valley and the South Caucasus – Ruben Badalyan, Christine Chataigner and Armine Harutyunyan ;


About the Author

Ruben Badalyan is a Doctor of Historical Sciences in the Academy of Sciences of Armenia and a Leading Scientific Member of the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography. His work concerns the Neolithic and the Bronze Age in the South Caucasus, the chronology of the Kura-Araxes culture and the exploitation of obsidian. He has directed or co-directed field investigations at numerous archaeological sites in Armenia (Karnut, Gegharot, Tsaghkahovit, Horom), including joint Armenian-French projects (Aratashen, Aknashen, Voskeblur, Haghartsin). ;

Christine Chataigner is a researcher at the Archéorient laboratory (UMR 5133, CNRS - Université Lyon 2). Her research focuses on the Neolithic and Chalcolithic periods in the South Caucasus as well as the characterisation and diffusion of obsidian in this region and the neighbouring countries. The Director of the Caucasus archaeological mission (French Ministry of Foreign Affairs), she has participated in various surveys and excavations in Armenia (Kmlo-2, Godedzor, Getahovit, Kalavan, Tsaghkahovit rockshelter) and in Georgia (Paravani, Bavra-Ablari).


‘This book offers the first detailed analyses of results from 11 years of excavations at the sixth-millennium BC Neolithic site of Aknashen, Ararat Valley, Armenia. The site is close to two other Neolithic settlements, Aratashen and Masis Blur, both of which are, unfortunately, less well preserved. Besides the Introduction and the Conclusion, the book includes 15 chapters from different specialists that deal with various aspects of the site and its material culture (e.g. environment, stratigraphy and architecture, chronology, mortuary practices, artefacts and subsistence economy). The data presented here, accompanied by a great number of excellent illustrations, are crucial to understanding the development of a Neolithic culture in this part of the world.’Bertille Lyonnet (2022), Antiquity