Das Haupttor an der Südspitze des Eski Kermen.

Lufbild des Mangup Kale, der in der Forschung als Mittelpunkt der Gotthia angesehen wird, in welcher nach der Überlieferung, die »Gotthoi« siedelten.

Im Rahmen des Projektes erstellter Übersichtsplan des Mangup Kale mit den archäologischen Befunden und den modernen Grabungsflächen.


Transformation and cultural exchange at the periphery of the Mediterranean world: the mountains of the Crimea in Medieval times


Ukrainian archaeology has been cut off from technological development in the West for decades. The special military status impeded the application of usual survey techniques and a uniform grid did not exist. The economic situation had led to provisional archives of excavation documentation and finds. The development of the study design, taking these factors into account, aimed to support the existing research structures on the Crimea.

One focus was placed on settlement and landscape archaeology in the area of the hilltop settlements Eski Kermen and Mangup Kale. Systematic investigations had been inexistent. A further project consisted in the compilation of a commented collection of Greek, Latin and Slavic written sources on the Crimea between the 4th and 12th century AD and the commented German translation of the report of the delegate Martinus Bronovius (1579), the oldest known description of the Mangup. In cooperation with the institute i3Mainz, the Vienna Institute of Archaeological Science and the Central Institute of Meteorology and Geodynamics (Vienna), the RGZM was also engaged in the areas prospection, survey and documentation aiming for the creation of a geographic information system (GIS) for further local research. Special attention was paid to the cave complexes on the periphery of Eski Kermen and Mangup Kale. Furthermore, consultancy services were requested for the investigation of the cemeteries.

The Institute of Anthropology of the JGU Mainz accompanied the excavations in order to examine the preconditions for palaeo-genetic analyses. The Ukrainian excavators were supported in publishing the cemeteries according to international standards. Prof. Magdalena Maczynska (University Łódz) und Prof. Jan Bemmann (University Bonn) assumed the analysis of further cemeteries. The engagement in the area of geoinformatics has notably improved the working conditions of Ukrainian archaeology. Apart from producing a surveying grid around the Eski Kermen and the Mangup Kale the existing excavation maps were georeferenced and implemented in a GIS together with all other spatially referenced information. Ukrainian junior scholars were trained comprehensively in the maintenance of the GIS. The survey of the cave complexes laid the foundations for future research in the few still relatively undisturbed settlement areas. In cooperation with the Fachhochschule Mainz standards were established for the elaboration of maps of such polymorph spatial complexes which are a neglected archaeological source in many regions of the Mediterranean.