Pictures of Karatepe Aslantas Hittite Art Sculptures. { 345 images } Created 7 Sep 2018

Pictures & images of the Hittite sculptures and relief panels of Karatepe Open Air Museum, Turkey. Photos by photographer Paul E Williams. Karatepe Aslantas is a Hittite archaeological site in southern Anatolia, Turkey. Karatepe was built as a Hittite fortress on the ancient Akyol trade caravan route which connected Cilicia in the southern palins with Central Anatolia and was used by Phoenician traders who traded manufactured goods for raw metals. Karatepe fortress is also situated on the edge of a gorge and controlled cedar wood that was floated down the ricer Ceyhan ( Pyramos) from Kadirli to the coast to be used in ship building. The fortress with 4m wide walls was founded in the 8th century BC by Azatiwada, the king of Quwê, a Neo-Hittite kingdom, and was originally known as Azatiwadaya. Some of the massive walls of Karatepe Aslantas have been rebuilt and two monumental gates were excavated from 1946 unearthing carved stone orthostat stele. Many of the Neo Hittite basalt orthostats that lined the inner walls of the North and South Gate had bilingual inscriptions in both Phoenician and Luwian hieroglyphics which allowed archaeologists to decipher the Hittite hieroglyphs also known as Anatolian hieroglyphs which were the indigenous logographic script native to central Anatolia, consisting of some 500 signs. Pictures and images of the Hittite stele known as the “Karatepe bilingual," which have been compared to the Rosetta Stone, are to be found in this photo gallery . Pictures of the North and South Gate stele also reveal a wonderful collection of Neo Hittite art Bas relief sculptures of Hittite Gods including a stele with a wonderful sculpture of the Ancient Egyptian God Bes. These stele demonstrate the imaginative nature of Hittite art with sculptures of strange mythical animal Gods, Goddesses and statues of mythical creatures, sphinxes and lions. Many of the Gods are interacting with mortals. Left in situ, where they were placed in the 8th century BC, these Hittite artworks are today protected by a roof from the elements so can be enjoyed 3000 years later by visitors to Karatepe.


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