Çavuştepe (Festung Šardurihinili)




Šardurihinili Fortress  

The remains of the Urartian fortress Šardurihinili (Sarduris town), built between 764 and 735 BC by King Sarduri II, are located above the village Çavuştepe. It is situated on the slope of the Bol Dağı, which gave the fortress its strategic importance. An important military road led from the Urartian capital Tušpa to Šardurihinili and from there over the Kel-i-Schin Pass to Musasir.


The ruin of the palace  

Šardurihinili was built when Urartu was powerful and is an impressive example of Urartian architecture, art and culture. Excavations took place between 1961 and 1986. The Šardurihinili fortress consists of an acropolis and a lower town.
In the smaller upper fortress there is a temple of the god Haldi, in the lower fortress the palace, depots, stables, workshops and a temple for the god Irmušini. In other fortresses no temples of other gods were found, only those for Haldi. Within the fortress wall there are also cisterns. During the excavations a granary with fossilized grain was found. Many inscriptions of consecration and thanksgiving of the king to the god Haldi were found scattered all over the fortress.

An exemplary inscription reads:

„By the greatness of the god Ḫaldi Sarduri, son of Argišti, builds this granary. There is 5800 kapi (measure) of grain contained"


Der Festungshügel  

The fortress was probably destroyed by the Scythians in the 7th century BC. In the Middle Ages, stones from the fortress were used to build houses. The kingdom Urartu was in the 1st millennium B.C. a kingdom in the northeast Asia Minor, in the border area of the today's states Turkey, Armenia and Iran. Most researchers assume that the empire already came to an end in the 6th century BC. A final assessment of the end of Urartu requires more accurate data. With the end of the empire also the Urartian language disappears.



Photos: @chim, Monika P.    
Translation aid: www.DeepL.com/Translator    
Source: Wikipedia and others