Event: PIZZA TALK: Living on the edge at Zincirli, Turkey: excavations at the crossroads of Syria and Anatolia in the 17th century BCE

Date & Time

November 20, 2019 - 12:00pm to 1:00pm
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Contact Information

Sumiji Takahashi
Phone 310-825-4169


Fowler A222 (Seminar Room)

Event Type

Pizza Talk

Event Details


Kathryn R. Morgan, Ph.D.
Oriental Institute Postdoctoral Scholar
Assistant Director of the Chicago-Tübingen Expedition to Zincirli
University of Chicago


Recent excavations at the edge of the upper mound of Zincirli Höyük in Gaziantep province, southeastern Turkey, have discovered important remains of the Middle Bronze II period, destroyed in a conflagration. Zincirli is best known from its Iron Age heyday, nearly a millennium later, when it was one of several ethnolinguistically diverse, iconographically rich Syro-Hittite cities located in what is still today a border region between Syria and Turkey. Work at the site since 2015 has revealed that this multicultural character has even deeper roots: along with evidence for food, and possibly wine, production and storage, textile production, and local administration, the well-preserved assemblage includes vessel and cylinder seal types that attest to long-distance trade and cultural connections. It appears that Zincirli was part of an exchange network linking the Euphrates, North Syria, and Central Anatolia in the 17th c. BC—at least until relationships soured: according to the Annals of Hattušili I, the first military targets of the rising Hittite kingdom were in this very region. In this talk, I present recent discoveries at the site with a view toward illuminating this little-known network, which the Hittites apparently hoped to disrupt or co-opt.