Б.А. Литвинский, И.Р. Пичикян
Эллинистический храм Окса в Бактрии
Т. 1. Раскопки. Архитектура. Религиозная жизнь.
// М.: «Восточная литература». 2000. 504 с.+ вклейка.
ISBN 5-02-018114-5; ISBN 5-02-018126-9 [см. также Т. 2 и Т. 3.]
Открытия и раскопки сокровищ Бактрии.
Глава 1. Три крупных открытия в Бактрии. — 13
1. Находка Клада Окса. — 13
2. Клад Окса — сокровище зороастрийского храма. — 29
3. Греческий город Ай-Ханум — открытие века. — 36
4. История открытия и раскопок храма Окса на Тахти-Сангине. — 42
а. История Каменной крепости. — 42
б. Начало раскопок на Тахти-Сангине. — 46
Глава 2. Раскопки и стратиграфия храма Окса. — 51
1. Общие замечания. — 51
2. Четырёхколонный центральный (белый) зал. — 53
3. Обходные коридоры. — 71
4. Атешгахи. — 97
5. Колонный айван. — 113
6. Большая площадь — теменос. — 117
Глава 3. Архитектура и строительные конструкции храма Окса. — 135
1. Общие замечания. — 135
2. Стены. Кирпич. — 136
3. Базы. — 141
4. Стволы колонн. — 153
5. Капитель ионического стиля. — 156
6. Греко-бактрийские алтари. — 169
7. Геометрическое построение. Пропорции. Симметрия. Метрологические проблемы. — 175
8. Вопросы хронологии. — 179
Иранские и восточноэллинистические храмы огня и их генезис.
Глава 4. Иранские и восточноэллинистические храмы огня. — 187
1. Изучение зороастрийской культовой архитектуры. — 187
2. Храм Окса на Тахти-Сангине. — 202
а. Функциональное назначение помещений. — 202
б. Контекст архитектурных сопоставлений. — 204
в. Атешгахи — необходимый компонент храмов огня. — 206
3. Типология иранских и восточноэллинистических храмов огня. — 209
а. Храм огня в Сузах. — 209
б. Храм огня Кухи-Хваджа. — 216
в. Храм огня в Персеполе. — 226
Глава 5. Генезис форм иранских храмов огня и эволюция частей композиционного построения. — 241
1. Монументализация культовых сооружений. Истоки развития фасадов с башенным оформлением. — 241
2. Месопотамия, Палестина. Храмы бронзового века с башнями на фасаде. — 242
3. Проблема бит хилани. Дальнейшее развитие фасадов с башенным оформлением. — 247
4. Айван и его происхождение. — 254
5. Передневосточные, древнеиранские и бактрийские истоки архитектурной композиции. — 259
6. Культовые сооружения, связанные с огнём, в предахеменидском и ахеменидском Иране. — 264
7. Дворцы Ахеменидов. — 278
8. Выводы. — 281
Глава 6. Храмы с двухчастным поперечным делением (храмы со статуей божества или храмы айханумского типа). — 283
1. Ай-Ханум. Храм с уступчатыми нишами (храм с реданами). — 283
2. Ай-Ханум. Храм за стеной города. — 289
3. Храм Диоскуров в Дильберджине. — 290
4. Храм Зевса Мегистоса. — 293
5. Храм Артемиды в Дура-Европос. — 295
6. Здание с парадной лестницей в Ашшуре. — 296
7. Генезис композиции храмов со статуей айханумского типа. — 296
Религиозная жизнь в храме Окса.
Глава 7. Культы и ритуал. — 303
1. Религиозно-культовый фон. — 303
2. Культ огня. — 308
3. Культ воды. — 312
4. Связь культов огня и воды. — 324
5. Постэллинистические храмы огня и храмы огня современных зороастрийцев. — 328
6. Посвятительные дары и храмовые сокровищницы. — 341
7. Проблемы ритуальной жизни в храме Окса. — 352
8. Почитание разрушенного храма Окса местным населением Бактрии — Тохаристана. — 363
П.П. Керзум, А.П. Керзум. Геоморфологические условия и реконструкция палеоэкологической обстановки в районе памятника Тахти-Сангин (на фоне территории Северной Бактрии — Тохаристана). — 375
Е.В. Зеймаль. Монетные находки Тахти-Сангина (реестр). — 393
Библиография. — 405
Список библиографических сокращений. — 405
Перечень цитированных трудов. — 409
List of tables. — 469
[ Вклейка: Табл. 1-77. — между стр. 464 и 465 ]
Именной указатель. — 474
Географический указатель. — 481
Summary. * ^
* Перевод И.Д. Джибладзе.
For the past two centuries and a half since the publication of the book “Historia regni graecorum Bactriani” (1738) by Russian academician T.S. Bayer the study of history and culture of Hellenistic Bactria has advanced greatly. Extremely important results have been achieved in the second half of the 20th century when Délégation archéologique française en Afghanistan headed by P. Bernard conducted excavations of a large Hellenistic city now known under the name of Ai-Khanum (North Afghanistan). The greatest Hellenistic centre in the East has been discovered, remarkable monuments of the architecture, art and material culture have been found. The second discovery was excavations at the site of Takhti-Sangin, initiated by B.A. Litvinsky, the director of Southern Tajik archaeological expedition and conducted under his direction by the Takhti-Kobad detachment (headed by I.R. Pičikian) of this expedition. The excavations lasted from 1978 till 1991 and were interrupted due to political instability in the republic of Tajikistan.
The authors have published a considerable amount of special works on these excavations, separate problems and finds (see Bibliography) in Russian and western languages, but they have a preliminary character. The authors’ opinions (not always coinciding) have been subjected to change, their evolution has been conditioned by the entry of new materials in the course of excavations and by a deeper understanding of the materials. The constructive attempts of our colleagues to evaluate and interpret these excavations in one way or another have also been taken into consideration [Bernard, 1994; Jettmar, 1994; Koch, 1995a], though their conclusions sometimes were of hasty character and based on incomplete knowledge of the material or wrong interpretation. The book besides “Preface” and “Summary” (B.A. Litvinsky) consists of seven chapters forming three parts.
Part I “The discovery and the excavations of the Bactrian treasures” includes Chapter 1 “Three significant discoveries in Bactria” (B.A. Litvinsky and I.R. Pičikian). It is about the find of the Treasure of the Oxus, the excavations of Ai-Khanum and the history of discovery and excavations of the Temple of the Oxus at the site of Tahti-Sangin. The discovery in 1877 of the Treasure of the Oxus and the consequent publication of it were the second important step in the study of Bactria. However, the concrete circumstances of the find of the treasure, and, especially, the exact place of the find remained unclear. The data, gathered by the English scholars soon after the delivery by Bokharan merchants of the objects of the treasure to Rawalpindi, led to several versions. T.I. Zeimal and E.V. Zeimal have made a developed comparison of these stories and the accounts of Russian travellers of that time. The
book contains additional information from the accounts of Russian travellers and maps of the end of the 70s-80s of the 19th century. The results of the excavations of the Temple of the Oxus with its many thousands of finds in its treasuries have become a serious argument in the discussion. Certain gold plates very closely resemble to the plates of the Treasure of the Oxus, but there were not many intact gold objects in the Temple of the Oxus. The comparison of the results of the excavations and information on finding the Treasure of the Oxus, that indicates its discovery near the site of Takhti-Sangin, allowed the authors to state the following hypothesis. At a certain moment when the enemies were approaching the temple, gold and silver treasures were secretly buried by the priests on the river banks somewhere between Takhti-Sangin and the other big site Takhti-Kobad (they are situated at a distance of 5 km). Then, for two thousand years the banks of the river had been washed off and all the treasures fell into the hands of local villagers and after that — to the merchants, and still after found themselves in the British Museum.
Then the book continues with the characteristic of the results of the excavations of Ai-Khanum, they are not conveyed in detail, because they have been elucidated in the works of P. Bernard and his colleagues (see Bibliography).
The part called “The history of the discovery and the excavations of the Temple of the Oxus at Takhti-Sangin” thoroughly explains the first archaeological works at Takhti-Sangin, associated with the names of B.P. Denike, M.M. Dyakonov and A.M. Mandelshtam. The latter in 1956 conducted trial excavations, but found only a post-Hellenistic (Kushan) wall, however there had been some earlier finds. 20 years later B.A. Litvinsky decided to renew excavations there. He conducted the general direction, planning and in the course of the excavations he described and made drawings of the finds: excavations proper and their fixation had been made by I.R. Pičikian.
The site of Takhti-Sangin is situated on the western side of the river of Vaxš near its junction with the river of Pyandž (from this place and lower the river is called Amudarya). The site of Takhti-Sangin is situated on the 3rd terrace of Vaxš. From the east it is limited by the river, from the west by Teshik-Tash ridge. The site stretches in meridional direction for 2 km and its width is 250-350 m. A rectangular citadel (238×167) is situated in the center of the site. To the north and to the south at a distance of 550 m the stripe of the site is crossed by the latitudinal walls. Judging from the number of visible remains of right-angled structures, it appears that there was a good deal of space between the structures. The drums of the columns found indicate that until the Kushan period the houses had stone peristyles of hellenistic order. Stone structures were also found on the upper plateaus of the low ridge. The excavations were conducted almost exclusively at the citadel. In this very place the large monumental building has been unearthed.
In Chapter 2 “The excavations and the stratigraphy of the Temple of the Oxus” (I.R. Pičikian) the process of excavations and the excavated building are thoroughly described. The temple (51×51 m) is symmetrical in plan with a square central hall and peripheral corridor-like rooms, fronted on the east side with an eyvan with flanking rooms, and a large courtyard (60×25 m) — temenos. Substantial sun-dried brick walls up to 3 m thick create an impression of extraordinary monumentality.
The corridors, preserved up to the height of 5-5.5 m, which frame the central hall and form a double row to the west, are carefully designed and originally planned.
The hall and peripheral corridors form a square (ca. 32×32 m). On the east side it is abutted by a long, centered rectangle (51×l7 m) divided into three units of almost identical size of ca. 17×17 m; in the middle there is an eight-columned eyvan, flanked by the northern and southern wings of rooms that mirror each other in plan. Each wing comprises a corridor, an altar room (measuring 5.4-5.5×5.2-5.3 m), and a narrow room connected with it. The altar rooms are reliably identified as ateshgahs by the scorched walls, the central sacrificial altar (built originally of dried bricks that have become completely burnt through prolonged use), four additional small altars in the corners, and the deposits consisting of ashes and charcoal. It is not accidental that the ateshgahs contained so much ash: modern Zoroastrians follow the ancient ritual of raking firebrands and ashes together in the area of the sanctuary because it is strictly forbidden to allow anybody from outside the room to defile the purity of the sacred enclosure.
The rectangular sacred yard-temenos was situated to the east of the building. It was encircled by an extremely massive wall of clay bricks.
The eastern wall of the temenos is reveted from inside by stone blocks. In its center, on the axis of the main entrance of the central hall the propylaeum fronting the river is situated.
Inside the floors of the Central Hall and in the other accommodations there are cult digs (botroi) and cult enclosure (fovissa) in which cult offerings were stored. Later the corridors were converted into treasuries. Besides, in the corridors and eyvan there were numerous pits and reservours for location of sacred ashes. In the yard, in front of eyvan, at the stone pedestal the statue (of god?), 5 m high, stood; till now only its feet (and only partially) have been preserved. In front of the Temple there is the well in the yard.
As the excavations indicated, there was some thin layer over virgin soil and then followed six floors. The lowest (from 0 to 0,10 m above subsoil) must be dated back to the 3rd c. B.C., the top one (in the central hall — 2 m above the subsoil) — to the 2nd-3rd c. A.D.
Chapter 3 “The architecture and the building constructions of the Temple of the Oxus” (B.A. Litvinsky and I.R. Pičikian) contains thorough analysis of architecture and architectural constructions of the temple.
As the elaborate plan suggests, the ancient architect had built the temple in the Oriental style, according to a strict geometric grid, albeit some minor changes that apparently occurred during the process of construction. Analysis of the building techniques shows that they also follow Oriental traditions. The monumental walls 3-4 m thick seem very archaic, while the dried bricks (50×50×14 cm) used for the building follow the traditional East Achaemenid standard. The walls are all bonded and it is an indication that they were built at about the same time. A monumental structure such as this could be created only by a construction effort demanding an expenditure of human and financial resources beyond the capabilities of a single city.
The architectural order and the material of the columns and monumental altars demonstrate the presence of Greek influence. Some modifications can be traced in
the columns, which combine the traditional Achaemenid two-step plinth, torus, and smooth pillar with a Greek Ionic capital of the classical Asia Minor type. All components of the column are made of fine-grained white limestone. The bases all have the same type and size of plinth (1 m square) and barrel-shaped torus (upper diameter 0.6 m), which were made separately from each other. Bases of this type can be dated typologically to the interim phase (late 4th to 3rd century B.C.) between the Achaemenid bases of western Iran of the 6th to 4th centuries B.C. and the Hellenistic architecture of Ai-Khanum of the 3rd to 2nd centuries B.C., where the tori and pedestals are sculpted as a single piece.
The most precisely dated architectural feature found in the Temple of the Oxus is a fine Ionic capital of the Asia Minor type (early 3rd c. B.C., may be late 4th c. — early 3rd c. B.C.).
The stone altars, installed in front of the temple have also been subjected to special analysis. They proved to be typically Hellenistic and undoubtedly connected with the Hellenistic cults.
A special section is devoted to the issues of proportions, symmetry and metrology. The construction base of the main building of the Temple is a square (the square of the central hall, the square of wings, which adjoin it, the square of altar rooms of the atesgahs). The square in the façade is tripled, that also has an explanation in Indo-Iranian religious ideology. An analysis of sizes makes it possible to conclude that a module which was equal to 50 cm was used in construction. It appeared to be similar to the module, which was used in Achaemenian buildings of western Iran. This module could be the Achaemenian module (Old Persian arasan) applied in Bactria or its Bactrian variant, extremely similar in length to its Achaemenian “brother”.
The composition pattern of the temple’s plan is characterized by the combination of two types of symmetry: bilateral and radial ones. At the end of the chapter the final conclusions are made concerning the time of building of the temple.
Coins have been examined for this purpose, as well as objects of art, material culture and weapons, stratigraphical data and analysis of the architecture. According to the opinion of I.R. Pičikian, the temple was built under Alexander the Great; B.A. Litvinsky thinks that it happened under early Seleucids — at the very end of the 4th or at the beginning of the 3rd c. B.C.
Part II is devoted to the Iranian and the eastern Hellenistic temples of fire and their genesis. It consists of three chapters. In chapter 4 (by B.A. Litvinsky and I.R. Pičikian) the Iranian and eastern Hellenistic temples of fire are investigated. The presence of atesgahs and pits for storage of ashes evidences with absolute undoubted-ness that the temple of the Oxus was the Zoroastrian temple of fire. The study of Zoroastrian cult architecture has a long history. The archaeologists, architects, historians of Zoroastrian religion dealt with this study. This theme in its many aspects is highly debatable. The chapter contains a critical review of existing opinions, evaluations of existing schemes of architectural typology of such temples.
The generalized characteristic of the Temple of the Oxus as a standard of temple of fire has been given. For this purpose the functional destination of premises is examined. If previously the researchers focused their attention at the central four-
columned hall, we have given our particular attention to lateral premises in the wings. As the excavations in the Temple of the Oxus have demonstrated, it was there the atesgahs were situated. In the other temples they were situated at façade sides.
The temples of fire have a central hall, where, probably, public ceremonies were held. The other peculiarity of Iranian temples is represented by outlining the central hall with corridors. These corridors follow П-shaped pattern or Г-shaped pattern or are situated along two sides of the central hall.
The distinguishing of the atesgah in the composition pattern as the key indication provides an opportunity of attribution of both known for a long time and newly discovered monuments as the temples of fire — under the obligatory condition of presence of two atesgahs at the flanges of the façade side. This indication also allows to trace the genesis and architectural and planning evolution of the Iranian temples of fire throughout the functioning of the most important type of sacred installations throughout the history and culture of the Iranians.
For the purpose of comparative analysis all the other existing Iranian temples of this type and this time have been presented. Those are the temples of fire in Susa, Persepolis, Kuhi-Khwağa. The temple in Susa is the only one excavated completely (if its central core is implied), but a detailed account on these excavations is not available to the scholars. The temple in Persepolis is underexcavated and the publication of these excavations does not exist either, and the lower temple in Kuhi-Khwağa is only partly excavated. There are different interpretations of these temples in respect both of the chronology and their functional purpose. A number of scholars tend to deny their purpose as the temples of fire. That is why in the work all, even the smallest factual data on these installations have been collected and analysed in details as well as the existing interpretations. As a result we have come to a conclusion that the temples in Susa, Persepolis, Kuhi-Khwağa are the temples of fire and that they date back to the 5th-4th c. B.C.
Chapter 5 is devoted to the problem of evolution of Iranian temples of fire and the evolution of the composition pattern (the authors — B.A. Litvinsky and I.R. Pičikian).
The idea of monumentalization of the sacred installations has very ancient roots and can be found in the Near East — in Syria and Mesopotamia from the bronze age. It appears to be directly connected with the intention to distinguish the house of the ruler or the house of the deity from a common building. In the book the only one side of this process — monumentalization of façades of Mesopotamian and Syrian buildings is examined. Discontinuity of the line of development and remoteness of these regions from Bactria notwithstanding that is the architectural device which can be traced at all stages of development of the cult architecture of the East — from the most primitive forms to the developed ones, which became canonical in Achaemenian palace and cult buildings. The device of tower-like bulge at façade corners is particularly important. This conclusion derives from the examination of Syrian and Mesopotamian architecture of the 4th — early 1st millennium B.C.
This question also relates to the problem of bit hilāni as well as the consequent development of façades with tower mounting.
B.A. Litvinsky has examined in detail the question of bit hilāni which has been debated among the scholars for over a hundred years. Arguments of the participants in the discussion (O. Puchstein, F. Oelmann, R. Koldewey, F. Wachtsmuth, H. Weidhaas, H. Frankfort, B. Meisser, Th.A. Bussink, B. Hrouda, H.Th. Bossert, V. Fritz and other) have been set forth. As it becomes clear, the architectural type of bit hilāni was developing and reached its mature forms in Syria and in the south of Asia Minor in the second half of the 2nd millennium B.C. The first examples that have been preserved till now date back to the 15th-14th c. B.C., but they are also known in the later period the 9th-7th c. B.C. Some buildings had singled-out external angles. The central quarters had hearths-altars. Then this form penetrated into Mesopotamia, where it was used in the construction of palaces. Parallel to this, the eyvan spread in the Near East. It has been noted, for the first time, in the Tepe Gawra Temple, in layers VIII-A, VIII-B (late 4th — early 3rd millennium B.C.). Then it was discovered in Assur in the Sin-Šamaš Temple (the 15th c. B.C.) on the premises of Sendscherli, Tell-Halaf, Arslan Tash (the 9th-8th c. B.C.), in one of the Babylonian palaces (the 6th c. B.C.). In Achaemenid architecture the eyvan was enriched with columns, it became wide and shallow. In the author’s opinion the role probably played by Assyrian bit hilāni in the emergence and evolution of the columned eyvan should not be ignored. Though functionally different these forms are still very close in terms of planning. Probably, indirect stimulation of ideas took place.
B.A. Litvinsky also studies the origin of the architectural composition with a passage encircling a four-columned cella with a columned eyvan-portico and square-tower ledges limiting the portico on the sides and placed in the front angles of the cella. The origin of this composition can be traced back to Mesopotamian architecture of the 4th-3rd millennium B.C., which is illustrated by a number of examples. A layout with a number of elements characteristic of the Temple of the Oxus had taken shape by the end of the 13th c. B.C. as it is attested by the temple in Assur built by king Tukulti-Ninurta I (1243-1207 B.C.). These compositions were developed in Assyrian palatial construction. D. Stronach in his search for the sources of Achaemenid architecture turned to pre-Achaemenid architecture of Iran. It is advisable to continue work in the direction of the above mentioned architectural composition. In Hasanlu VI (1000-800 B.C.) there were many-columned cellae including four-columned ones; in ca. 900 B.C. the idea of a columned portico came into being. According to T.C. Young, we may feel the influence of megaron there. Columned constructions are known for the 8th c. B.C. from the Iranian monument Baba Jan and for the 7th c. B.C. — from Tepe Nush-i Jan, etc. Achaemenid architecture had even more similar compositions. Bactrian local architecture of the bronze age (Džar-Kutan Temple and Margianan monuments) could have made a certain impact as well. On the other hand, monumental buildings of Hellenistic Bactria show a distinct influence of West-Hellenistic architectural ideas and Bactrian-Hellenistic synthesis.
Chapter 6 (I.R. Pičikian with the participation of B.A. Litvinsky) is devoted to the temples with twofold cross division which were spread in Greco-Bactrian time and later in Bactria (alongst the temples of the Oxus type). In the book two temples at Ai-Khanum have been thoroughly analysed: one is located inside the town — “temple a redans” and the other is situated outside town walls — «temple hors le
mur». In South Bactria one more temple of this type is known — the temple of Dioscuri in Dilberdjin. There are temples of analogous type in Selucid Mesopotamia. In the book the temple of Zeus Megistos and the temple of Artemis in Dura-Europas, as well as the temple with a front staircase (Freitreppenbau) in Assur are characterized. Formerly there were statues of the deity in these temples. In the final paragraph of this chapter the problems of genesis of the temples of this type have been examined. The authors are convinced that the initial points of development of this pattern of the temple should be looked for in the Mesopotamian and Northern-Assyrian cult architecture. One of the most ancient points of departure is the temple of Tell Chuera, which was built in the 3rd millennium B.C. and subsequently was renewed twice. In the ancient Alalah — Tell Açana the evolution is traced from the example of 17 temples changing each other over the period starting from the 4th and 3rd millennia B.C. and till the end of the 2nd millennium B.C. Thus not only at Takhti-Sangin (the Temple of the Oxus) but also at Ai-Khanum and Dilberdjin in Hellenistic times there were temples which bore the marks of a very ancient oriental architectural tradition.
Part III consists of only one chapter, Chapter 7, dealing with the cults and rituals (the author B.A. Litvinsky). In the section “The religious-cult background” the available data of written sources are laid and the conclusion is made that in Achaemenian and early-Hellenistic times Bactria was a Zoroastrian country. In any case the whole historical-archaeological material does not contradict such an opinion.
Taking into account the scarcity and the controversial character of the written sources and the linguistic materials, the data obtained directly in course of the excavations of the Temple of the Oxus acquire special significance. First of all there is the problem of a small votive altar with a stone pedestal and a bronze figure of Selenus — Marsyas standing on it and playing a two-branched aulos. At the pedestal a Greek inscription is engraved: Εύχήν άνέθηκεν Ατροσωκης Όξωι, i.e. “Atrosōkes dedicated his vow to Oxus”. The name “Atrosōkes” has been analysed by V.A. Livshits. He has demonstrated convincingly that this name was an Iranian one, more precisely a Bactrian name, and it meant “possessing a blazing fire”, “he, that possesses a blazing fire” or “he, that possesses a strong [intensive] fire”.
So the altar was dedicated to the deity of the river of the Oxus (the Greek transcription of the Vaxš — Amudarya). Undoubtedly it was sacrificed to the temple of the deity of the river. But there are also special premises in the temple — atesgahs with the altars of fire and considerable accumulations of ashes, that evidences the cult of eternal fire, moreover, there was not a single atesgah, there were two of them. The picture becomes even more complicated by the presence of the Greek altars and sculptures with inscriptions addressed to the Greek deities. That’s why questions arise about the possibility of coexistence in one temple of the cults of water and fire; the local altars of fire and the Hellenistic altars.
In the following three paragraphs the Indo-Iranian materials, the data of the ancient sources, the iconographical and ethnographical data concerning the cults of fire and water as well as concerning the connection of the cults of fire and water in beliefs of the Iranians are laid. The author proceeds from the assumptions which yet have been formulated by the prominent Iranistic scholars: “Indeed it has been truly
said that it would be quite as just and reasonable to call Zoroastrians water as fire-worshippers” (M. Boyce) and “the ritual link between the Fire and Water rests upon Indo-Iranian foundation” (G. Widengren). Thus, the combination in one sanctuary (temple) of the cults of the Fire and Water derives from essential foundations of the ancient Iranian religion. At the territory of Bactria such combination has very deep roots and has been fixed still for the Bactrian temple Djar-Kutan from the mid of the 2nd millennium B.C.
A special section is devoted to the post-Hellenistic temples of fire and the temples of fire of the contemporary Zoroastrians. It is noted there, that the other temples, constructed according to the same architectural-planning pattern as the temple of the Oxus have not yet been discovered in Eastern Iran or Central Asia. But certain separate elements and principles of this planning continued their existence. In this respect Surkh Kotal, the sanctuary in the out of town complex Toprak-kala and the Sogdian temples (and the Sogdian religious iconography) are of particular interest.
For understanding of rites which were performed in the Temple of the Oxus the data from the late Zoroastrian sources are drawn. They are discussed in details in this section of the chapter. Besides, evidences from the ancient Armenian, Syrian and Arab sources concerning the Zoroastrian temples and rites are presented. These fragmentary and not full data have been completed by the materials on the arrangement of the temples of the contemporary Zoroastrians of Iran and India, because certain features of the arrangement and ritual of the ancient Iranian temples of fire have reached modern epoch in the form of separate elements of structure and ritual of the temples of the contemporary Zoroastrians. Special characteristic is given to the Zoroastrian rites and customs, associated with the maintenance of the sacred fire and the attitude of the Zoroastrians to the ashes. The analysis of the sources demonstrates that the temple was perceived, in particular, as a place of accumulation of the ashes. Moreover, in the Sasanian state there was a law, according to which the temples had to deliver certain amounts of ashes. The data on beliefs and rites of the population of Central Asia, associated with the ashes have been collected in the book. A particularly vivid cycle of beliefs belongs to the population of Shugnan (the area at Pamir), which reveres the ashes as the special, beneficial matter, possessing in particular healing peculiarities. The ashes from the hearths were gathered and stored in special vessels.
The analysis of sources of the Zoroastrian practice existing today as well as the archaeological materials makes it possible to reconstruct certain aspects of public ceremonies in the Temple of the Oxus. It is clear that they were held not in the limited space of atesgahs. Public ceremonies were held in eyvan and in the central hall. However, contrary to the opinions of certain investigators the sacred fire was not carried out from there, but only its “deputy” or “twin” — the smouldering small pieces of wood. For that the smouldering pieces of coal were placed in a special, supposedly metallic vessel and established on a special support (in the central hall there were two such supports — altars for sacrifices).
The following paragraph (“The Temple of the Oxus in the light of the materials of the Hellenistic and post-Hellenistic temples”) is devoted to the role of the temples in the Hellenistic world, in particular, in Seleucid epoch. At that time temples had a particularly important role. There were even temple-states. In Asia Minor and
Armenia at the Hellenistic time the temple associations had large land possessions, dependent villages and settlements. The riches of the temples had been accumulated as the result of exacting of various taxes, offerings as well as of development of economic activity. Not long ago some scholars stated that the existence of wealthy and powerful temple complexes, as it had been in Mesopotamia, was unknown for Iran. However now, after the deciphering of the Parthian documents from Nisa and the excavations of the Temple of the Oxus the situation has changed. It is quite possible and even very likely that at least many features peculiar to the Hellenistic temples, especially to the temples of Mesopotamia and East Mediterranean area were also peculiar to the all-Bactrian temple of the Oxus, in particular, the concentration of political power in the hands of its priests, the possessing by the Temple of the Oxus of great economic power and dependent people. Further on in the book the practice and structure of offerings for the Oriental, Greek and, among them Hellenistic, temples are examined. The analysis of the inventories of the Greek temples and other data concerning their treasures indicate the presence of great number of arms in these temples. These ancient lists are literal “twins” of the inventory list from the treasuries of the Temple of the Oxus. Such an abundance of arms corresponds to what is known to us about the abundance of arms in the temples of the Achaemenid Mesopotamia and about the military organization of Zoroastrian temples of Iran.
In a special paragraph the problems of the ritual life in the Temple of the Oxus are investigated. The point of departure is the inscription with the name Atrosōk. It implies that in the temple the deity of the river of the Oxus was worshipped. Oxos is the Greek transliteration of the Iranian hydronym Vaxšu. Among the sacred Zoroastrian fires there were personified fires, devoted to the deity. Thus it is reasonable to suppose that one of atesgahs was devoted to the deity “Oxos” proper. As for the second atesgah no definite answer can be given. It could duplicate the first one or it could be the object of worship, as the embodiment of the deity of the water element and the fertility — Arǝdvī Sūrā Anāhitā. Then the comparison of the Zoroastrian texts and the materials on ritual, obtained during the excavations of the Temple of the Oxus has been carried out and the approximate shape of various ritual activities in the Temple of the Oxus, both individual and public, has been reconstructed.
In the Greek temples the reverence of fire also took place. The temple of fire should not be perceived by the Hellenes as something inimical or alien. That is why since late 3rd — early 2nd c. B.C. in the place of the ancient pise-walled altars the Hellenistic ones of stone were established. According to the Greek regulations they were established to the East of the Temple. They functioned simultaneously and in parallels with the local altars of fire — consequently, the temple could be attended not only by the local dwellers — the Bactrians, but also by the Greeks. The discovery of the Greek altars in the Zoroastrian temple of fire in an extraordinary vivid way illuminates the great advance of the process of the Bactrian-Greek syncretism.
The final paragraph of the chapter is devoted to the worship of the ruined temple of fire by the local population.
In the general “Summary” (B.A. Litvinsky) the question of the place of the Temple of the Oxus in the history of culture of Central Asia is discussed. It is outlined there that the material of the excavations allows to introduce a cardinal new
element in the complex of conceptions dealing with the Bactrian — Hellenistic interaction and consequent fortunes of the Hellenistic culture, its role and influence in the post-Hellenistic times.
This problem is of serious significance not only for Bactria, but for Central Asia and India in general. The characteristic of the early-Hellenistic Central Asia has been given and the dating of building of the temple to late 4th — early 3rd c. B.C. has been substantiated.
The comparison of the Temple of the Oxus with Ai-Khanum reveals their essential difference. Ai-Khanum was a Greek polis, possessing appropriate government, with prevailing Greek population, thinking, speaking, writing and reading in Greek and worshipping Greek gods. The number of local dwellers — the Bactrians was limited there and they were apparently completely hellenized. At Takhti-Sangin there was Bactrian population that professed its own religion, but partially there was Greek population, undoubtedly bilingual. At certain segments of the material and the spiritual spheres the results of introduction of Hellenistic elements are noticeable as well as Greek-Bactrian synthesis. In the architecture of the Temple of the Oxus the Near Eastern, especially Achaemenian traditions are very strong, but the Greek ones are also expressed.
Apparently, there were several zones of hellenization of Bactria: 1) the zone of compact settling of the Hellenic population; 2) the areals of close Hellenic-Bactrian ethnocultural and religious contacts. In the second zone apparently at least three patterns existed. The first: the inclusion of the separate elements of the Greek culture in the context of the foreign culture without substantial reinterpretation of the former. The second pattern is connected with internal transformation (of different kinds and degrees) of semantic contents of certain rites, customs or images. One of the variants of this pattern consisted of bringing into correlation of the alien culture element with isomorphical element within the given culture and the incorporation of the former in the system of this culture either in unchanged or slightly changed shape and with the same or hybrid content. And, finally, the third pattern, under which in the local environment the only separate elements of the alien material and spiritual culture had penetrated. These processes developed in the other regions of Central Asia, in particular in Sogdiana.
Then the facts are adduced, evidencing that the consequent development of the culture (in the broadest sense) of Central Asia, its several and the most important directions rested on the local Hellenistic or Hellenized substratum. All that is the base for the conclusion pertaining to the general humanitarian sphere: not only Western European Civilization has grown on the groundwork of the classical antiquity, but also the grounds of Central Asian civilization have included a solid Hellenistic foundation.
The book has two supplements: the first (P.P. Kerzum; A.P. Kerzum) is devoted to geomorphological characteristic and palaeo-ecological setting of the region of Takhti-Sangin involving the materials of the whole territory of Northern Bactria — Toharistan. The second supplement (the author is the eminent numismatist, late E.V. Zeimal) contains the entire list of the coins, discovered during the excavations.