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Balandy fortified manor.

Medieval monuments of the Kyzylorda region.

“History is a witness of the past, the light of truth, a living memory, a teacher of life, a messenger of antiquity”


Ancient monuments of the Eastern Aral Sea region.

The archaeological site of Balandy is located in the valley of Balandy, 179 kilometers south-west of the city of Kyzylorda and 39 kilometers north-east of the fortified settlement of Chirik-rabat, one of the most ancient towns in Kazakhstan.
The total area of ​​the settlement is 8 hectares, in the southeast it borders on large sandy mountains, and in the northwest with a vast plain steppe. The settlements are distinguished by such features as small connection channels on the surface found collections of fragments of ceramics.
You can see the planning sites for the construction of quadrangular houses. The monument was opened by the route detachment of the Khorezm archaeological and topographic expedition in 1959. The work carried out in 1960 - 1961 made it possible to determine that Balandy is a fortress surrounded by walls.
During the excavation, several living rooms located in the northwestern part of the monument were investigated. The walls in these rooms were decorated with colorful stucco. Found decorated bone plates, fragments of glassware, a large mirror made of bronze, this suggests that the fortress existed in the III - II centuries. B.C.
Recently, namely since 2007, under the leadership of J. Kurmankulov, stationary archaeological research of monuments has resumed in the region. In connection with the expansion and conduct of archaeological excavations in the fortress of Balandy, new information about the fortress was obtained.
A rectangular monument with an area of ​​80 x 130 meters is surrounded by a defensive wall and is oriented by corners to the cardinal points. The gate is located in the northwest of the fortress, which is the entrance to the city, like a corridor.
A fortress wall with a height of 3 m has been preserved. The corners of the fortress are reinforced with towers that protrude in a semicircle outward from the defensive wall. The materials obtained as a result of excavations give reason to assume an earlier date for the existence of the settlement.
The presence of a rectangular adobe brick, belonging to the second period of the monument’s life, and ceramic forms (cylindrical conical vessels) make it possible to date the time of its construction no later than the middle - end of the 4th century BC. e.
Since the beginning of the III century. n e. throughout Central Asia, the square shape of adobe brick reigns supreme. In Khorezm, a square raw brick appears already at the end of the Vth - beginning of the IVth centuries. BC e. Cylindrical and conical forms of vessels in the III century no longer meet.
In addition, the long history of the formation of defensive structures testifies to the early date of the settlement. It is noteworthy that the walls of the 1st period were built of low-quality clay, which may indicate that the builders had an approximate idea of ​​the construction equipment.
Only the walls of the second period are being erected with some observance of the canons of fortress architecture, first of all, Khorezm brick walls based on clay, arrow-shaped loopholes. The assumption that Balandy was a large fortified house was not confirmed.
In any case, no dwellings or capital buildings of raw materials were found in the southwestern and southeastern parts of the monument. Presumably, it was a well-fortified manor with a vast courtyard. The central building was located in the northwestern part, and it was it that was affected by the excavations of the early 1960s.
This estate, of course, was the center of a dispersed settlement, the place of residence of the rural community. Such a manor could serve as a community repository and, if necessary, be a refuge fortress. It should be noted that a similar structure of the settlement finds direct parallels in the early ancient Khorezm, where small un fortified manors grouped around the fortress, which served both as a public vault and a fortress-refuge (Kurgashinsky, Ayazkalinsky settlements).
Geographic coordinates of the monument of the fortified estate of Balandy: N44 ° 09'27.64 "E63 ° 22'43.92"

 “The fortified estate of Balanda (Bulanda) in the lower reaches of the Syr Darya. J. R. Utubaev.

Photos by
Alexander Petrov.