BEGINNING OF THE AENEOLITHIC IN THE STEPPES OF EASTERN EUROPE
The paper aims at reconstruction of wide spread processes leading to the appearance of the first Aeneolithic cultures (populations) on the vast areas of East European steppes. The climatic and environmental changes in 6th and 5th Millennia BC on the steppe areas of Eastern Europe are considered to be responsible for culture changes among populations inhabiting these territories. Studying of natural-climatic changes and cultural situation in the steppes of Eastern Europe showed that the first Aeneolithic 'Sredny Stog' culture was formed in the Kalmius and Don interfluve at the beginning of climate aridity about 5350 BC on the basis of traditions of the population of the Surskaya and late Aeneolithic Lower Don cultures. Discussing the Aeneolithic epoch in the steppe between the Dnieper and Don rivers, the authoress suggests, that it began there with appearance of the first metal objects made of copper regardless of their function and origins. The first metal products in the steppes of Eastern Europe appeared as a result of contact with the population of the Balkano-Carpathian region from whom skills of metal-working were borrowed. Aeneolithic may be attributed those cultures of steppe region or stages of their development at which sites the copper objects are represented and the contacts with the population of the neighbouring Gumelnita and Tripolye Aeneolithic cultures are traced.
- N. S. Kotova, Institute of Archaeology, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Heroiv Stalingrada 12; 254655 Kiev, Ukraine
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