A photo of a Scythian burial model is given on the vignette to the exposition. This is a burial of a tribe chief. Killed riders on killed horses, sacrificed to the buried, are fixed on a trestle from poles. It is not a fantasy of the exposition designers but the exact reproduction of the burial ritual of a noble Scythian, described by Herodotus. In every large Scythian burial there were from 6 to some dozens of bridled and saddled horses. About 400 horse skeletons, a whole herd, was found in one large burial. As far as the Scythians led a nomadic or seminomad life, the main knowledge of their material culture is based on the results of the excavations of the so-called "tsar's" burials because the most royal, precious objects were found exactly in them.

The most brilliant and wealthy finds from the Scythian and later Sarmatian burials are in the Hermitage collection (, which was accumulated for more than 200 years. At first (beginning from the 1726th ) it was preserved in the first Russian museum - Kunstkamera ( and from the 1859th, from the moment of foundation of the Imperial Archaeological Commission - in the Hermitage. At present the ancient artistic objects of the Scythians and other related tribes of the steppe Eurasia are in many other Russian ( see and foreign museums. One can also find them in the museums of the Ukraine, Kirghizia, Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, Mongolia, in the USA (Metropoliten), in France (musee Guimet), in England (British museum) and in some private collections (for example, A.Sacler's collection in New-York).



Kelermes Mirror

Kul-Oba Vessel


[Skythians, - who are they?]




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