New results of the research concerning the relations between Eastern Hungary

and the Eastern European steppe in the Early Avar period

Gulyás Bence

Hadak útján. A népvándorláskor fiatal kutatóinak XXIV. konferenciája. Esztergom, 2014. november 4–6. Conference of young scholars on the Migration Period. November 4–6, 2014, Esztergom

MŐT Kiadványok 3.1 (2015) 499–512

DOI 10.55722/Arpad.Kiad.2015.3.1_20


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A kora avar kori Kárpát-medencében számos etnikum azonosítására sor került. A Tiszától keletre eső területeken egy, az avaroktól temetkezési szokásaiban élesen elkülönülő népcsoport telepedett le. A korábbi kutatások egyértelműen kimutatták ennek a közösségnek a Fekete-tengertől északra található Szivasovka-horizonttal való kapcsolatát. Tanulmányomban a kapcsolat újabb bizonyítékai közül mutatok be néhányat.

Kulcsszavak: Tiszántúl, kora avar kor, Szivasovka-horizont, temetkezési szokások


In the Early Avar Age, on the left bank of the Tisza River, settled a certain population which clearly differed from other contemporary ethnic groups of the Carpathian Basin. The trail of the funeral rites undoubtedly leads to the vast plains between the Dnepr and the Volga, on the North-ern coastline of the Black Sea. Péter Somogyi pointed out that apart from the orientation, grave forms and partial horse burials, further similarities have been revealed. Among these are the rare presence of NW–SE orientation; partial cattle burial; putting a vessel or some meat, mostly sacrum of a sheep; and the carved, nailless coffins. The local, nomad-like burial rites are known as the Sivašovka-horizon. As indicated by the grave goods, this horizon dates back to the second half of the 6th century and the first half of the 7th century. Thus, the population of the Early Avar Age in Eastern Hungary could not have its ancestry in this horizon. A much probable theory is that once both of these ethnicities settled in the same region.

If we look at the steppe burial customs, this population shows the greatest similarity to the Sarmatian-Hunnic monuments of the area between the Volga and the Don Rivers and the north-ern foothills of the Caucasus Mountains. This Sarmatian base population gained its form known to us by merging with immigrant groups from Asia, and it only differs from the Tiszántúl pop-ulation in material culture. This population, living on the eastern fringes of Europe, may have come into contact with the Avars in the mid-6th century and could later join them in their migra-tion. Thus, some of them settled on the northern coastline of the Black Sea, while others followed Bajan’s people into the Carpathian Basin.