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Excavations at Körzüt Castle unearth new Urartian temple

Archaeological excavations at Körzüt Castle in the Uluşar District of Turkey have led to the discovery of a new Urartian temple. The ongoing excavations, which have been in progress for the last two years, have yielded various significant findings, including cuneiform inscriptions, tandoors, and partially damaged blue-plastered adobe bricks. This discovery is expected to not only attract history enthusiasts and researchers but also contribute to tourism in the Muradiye district.

Agencies and A News TRAVEL
Published October 25,2023

Archaeologists have discovered the remains of a new Urartian temple during excavations at Körzüt Castle, located in the rocky region of Muradiye's Uluşar neighbourhood, Van, Türkiye.

The excavations, which have been ongoing for the past two years, have also uncovered a cuneiform inscription, two tandoors, and partially damaged blue-plastered adobe bricks.

The temple is believed to have been part of a citadel that extended from north to south. The cuneiform inscription on the temple's northern façade consists of six rows and indicates the site's significance as a temple.

The plastered mud bricks found at the site feature blue plaster typical of Urartian temples, and archaeologists speculate that mythological scenes carved in brown or black might be present on these blocks.

The excavations are led by the Van Museum and are scientifically consulted by Sabahattin Erdoğan. They are supported by the Muradiye District Governorship and Municipality, and are conducted by the Department of Archeology at Van Yüzüncü Yıl University (YYÜ).

Assoc. Dr. Erdoğan expressed their hopes of making significant discoveries during the excavations at Körzüt Castle.

This year's excavations began on October 13, and Assoc. Dr. Erdoğan provided the following information: "Before starting the excavations, there was a citadel extending from north to south and a structure at the southern end. We observed two buttresses in the southeast and southwest, which we call 'rizalit.' These buttresses were part of the temple within the building. During further work, we initially identified a cuneiform block on the temple's northern façade. This block bears an Urartian cuneiform inscription consisting of six rows. A second block with a cuneiform inscription was discovered. These inscriptions indicate the site's significance as a temple."

District Governor Melih Aydoğan emphasized the importance of the ongoing work at Körzüt Castle, which has hosted civilizations dating back to the Urartian period.

Aydoğan that the new Urartian inscription found this year is expected to contribute to the district's tourism by attracting history enthusiasts and researchers.