The oldest city in the world suffered from overcrowding, filth and violence

One of the most ancient cities in the world is situated on the territory of present-day Turkey a settlement called çatalhöyük, which. Its ruins were discovered in 1958 and studied to this day — going excavations each summer, and every year archaeologists dig up on average a couple of new buildings. In the new study under the direction of the anthropologist Clark Larsen, it was found that the inhabitants of the ancient settlement suffered from three main problems of modern cities with a large population and poverty: overcrowding, unsanitary conditions and crime.

It is believed that the city of çatalhöyük, which was founded 9000 years ago — it can be called one of the first towns that emerged after a few thousand years after humans have moved on from the lifestyle of hunter-gatherer to agriculture. It lived approximately 3500-8000 persons, and for that time it was considered a very great indicator of the population. According to Clark Larsen, local residents fully experienced what happens if you collect a lot of people in a small area: overcrowding, infectious diseases, and violence.

The spread of infectious diseases

About all that anthropologists learned by examining the remains of 742 local residents. Isotope analysis showed that these people ate a lot of plant foods, like wheat, barley, rye. They also ate the flesh of sheep, goats and some wild animals, which they have had problems with teeth. This is evidenced by 13% of skulls studied by researchers.

The City Of Catal-Hüyük

The condition of the skeletons testified to the fact that the residents were suffering from infectious diseases. Their center, were mainly cattle — humans lived in close proximity to the sheep, which at that time carried many parasites. Picking up diseases from them, the people quickly passed them to each other, because they lived in extreme close quarters and unsanitary conditions.

They lived in very crowded conditions, with garbage pits and paddocks for animals near some of their homes. Thus the city was created poor sanitary conditions, which contributed to the spread of infectious diseases, said the researchers.

The causes of crime

Of course, a hard life directly influenced the relationship between residents. Analysis of skeletons showed a lot of evidence of interpersonal violence in 25 of the 93 studied the skulls bore signs of fractures. Most traces of the injury was in the occipital region, which alludes to the fact that the victims were often attacked from behind. Strikes both men and women.

The inhabitants of Chatal-Chuuka decapitated people before pohoronena

Ancient culture

With all this, the city of çatalhöyük, which was not a hell of a place. During the excavations archaeologists found many wall paintings and statues, that is, culture and art in it, too, was well developed. Also residents adhered to a very strange funeral rites they buried the dead under their houses. At the same time, group burial, some people were not connected to each other by ties of kinship, and anthropologists now find out what the people were burying unfamiliar people together.

Marble figure of Chatal-Chuuka

On the topic of archaeological finds also suggest you to read our material about the bag of an ancient shaman, discovered in the valley of the river Sora in the South-West of Bolivia. After examining the inside of the bag, the researchers learned a lot about its owner.

If you want to stay aware of the news of science and technology, be sure to subscribe to our Telegram channel. There you will find announcements of fresh materials of our site and a lot of other interesting content!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *