Definitions

worked fingers bone

Hamangia culture

Hamangia was a Middle Neolithic culture in Dobruja (Romania and Bulgaria) to the right bank of the Danube in Muntenia and in the south. It is named after the site of Baia-Hamangia.

Genesis

The Hamangia culture is connected to the Neolithisation of the Danube-Delta and the Dobruja. It includes Vinca, Dudeşti and Karanovo III elements, but may be based on autochthonous hunter-gatherers. The Hamangia culture developed into the succeeding Gumelnitsa, Boian and Varna cultures of the late Eneolithic without noticeable break.

Timeline

P. Hasotti has divided the Hamangia-culture into three phases. The culture begins in the middle of the 6th Millennium.

Pottery

Painted vessels with complex geometrical patterns based on spiral-motifs are typical. The shapes include pots and wide bowls.

Figurines

Pottery figurines are normally extremely stylized and show standing naked faceless women with emphasized breasts and buttocks. Two figurines known as “The Thinker” and “The Sitting woman” (see photos) are considered masterpieces of Neolithic art.

Settlements

Settlements consist of rectangular houses with one or two rooms, built of wattle and daub, sometimes with stone foundations (Durankulak). They are normally arranged on a rectangular grid and may form small tells. Settlements are located along the coast, at the coast of lakes, on the lower and middle river-terraces, sometimes in caves.

Inhumation

Crouched or extended inhumation in cemeteries. Grave-gifts tend to be without pottery in Hamangia I. Grave-gifts include flint, worked shells, bone tools and shell-ornaments.

Important sites

  • Cernavodă, the necropolis where the famous statues “The Thinker” and “The Sitting Woman” were discovered
  • the eponymous site of Baia-Hamangia, discovered in 1953 along Lake Goloviţa, close to the Black Sea coast, in the Romanian province of Dobrogea.
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    Notes

    Bibliography

  • Dumitru Berciu, Cultura Hamangia. Bucureşti: Editura Academiei Republicii Socialiste România, 1966.

See also

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