Lyta Moghila

Lyta Moghila is a Scythian burial mound in the heart of the Ukrainian landscape, it is also known as Melgunov kurgan.

Lyta Moghila

Lyta Moghila is a burial mound in the heart of the Ukrainian landscape, it is also known as Melgunov kurgan. This sacred Scythian burial mound, dating back to the latter half of the 7th century BCE, was unearthed in 1763 near the village of Kopani, in the Znamyan district of the Kirovohrad region.

Explorations beneath the earth’s surface revealed treasures that offer a glimpse into the rich cultural legacy of the Scythians. At a depth of 2 meters, beneath sturdy stone slabs, lay artifacts of immense historical significance. Among the treasures discovered were an iron sword, its handle encased in gilded splendor, and a wooden scabbard adorned with a golden plate intricately carved with depictions of fantastical creatures reminiscent of Near Eastern artistry.

Silver embellishments, resembling those found on Assyrian palace furniture, adorned the findings, along with a regal golden diadem fit for a monarch. However, the crowning jewels of this archaeological marvel were the 17 imposing golden plates, each bearing the image of an eagle with loops on its back, alongside depictions of monkeys, birds, and other symbols of ancient reverence. Additionally, a bronze clasp, adorned with lion heads, and an array of 40 bronze arrowheads further embellished the treasure trove.

The significance of Lyta Moghila cannot be overstated. It stands as the sole known Scythian royal burial mound of its era along the northern shores of the Black Sea. Dating back to 650–600 BCE, this site offers a unique window into the customs, beliefs, and material culture of the Scythian people.

In recognition of its historical importance, efforts have been made to preserve and commemorate Lyta Moghila. In 2020, the kurgan underwent restoration, ensuring its enduring legacy for future generations. A memorial marker now stands proudly, signifying the reverence with which this ancient site is held.

Furthermore, the image of the eagle, found adorning the golden plates within the kurgan, has been immortalized on the coat of arms of the Kirovohrad Oblast, serving as a poignant reminder of the region’s rich archaeological heritage.

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