Aq Kupruk

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Aq Kupruk is a village in Balkh Province in northern Afghanistan. Location - 36°5′0″N 66°50′0″E [1]


Hukum Singh Panwar writes:[2]Certain microlithic compounds in the epipalaeolithic assemblage have been discovered at Aq Kupruk [3] and the C-14 technique has dated them to 14,665 B.C. These have links with southern Tajikistan, northern Afghanistan and southern zone of Amu-Darya. These findings confirm migrations229 from greater Indus to Oxus valley about 14,000 B.C. (for antiquity of these sites see Purushotam Singh, 1991: 121 ff).

Hukum Singh Panwar writes:[4]

The internecine wars of the Aryans in Sapta Sindhu, we had shown, had pushed up migrations of the Iksvakus and Sakas, etc. to the Gangetic valley after Bhagiratha. Subsequently, the Sakas etc. were forced by Sagar to move across the Indus river. Consequently , the region up to Ural mountains was called Sakastan. "Archaeology firmly establishes Saka connections not only with Sakastan, Sakhalot near Dargai in the N.W.F.P."34 but also with other places even up to Scandanavia. The Scythic (Saka) element in the ornaments discovered at Mehargarh35 near Quetta in the Kachi plains takes the Saka association with and occupation of Balochistan by them as far back from about 8566 B.C. down to 2400 B.C. The Iksvakus are said to have been in possession of the Swat.(Suvastu) valley, which is considered by PL Bhargava36 as their original home. The first37 encounter of these Aryans (Bharatas) as noted earlier was with the Dahae (Dasyus or Dasas or Tasas) , an importan branch of the Sakas , in the upper reaches of the Indus38 wherefrom they perforce migrated to the Oxus (Jaksa or Yaksu or Aksu or Chaksu) valley and gave their ethnic name Jete39 (Jit, Jat) to the new home of their adoption in about 8000 B.C. The

The Jats:Their Origin, Antiquity and Migrations:End of page 240

archaeological "link40 of Aq Kupruk and Mehargarh with Southern Tajikistan, north-western Afghanistan and Amu Darya," and "the strong Murgabo-Bactrian character41 to the material which dominates the assemblages from the Southern cemetery of Mehargarh" strongly suggest the mixture of the Scythians with the local population and 'convincingly point to the contemporary movements and migrations of the Sakas in that region.

Archaeological sites

Aq Kupruk is also an archaeological site consists of four sites, numbered I, II, III and IV.

Aq Kupruk I, or Ghar-i Asb, is a rock shelter of the Kushan-Sasanian period, containing some fregmentary Buddhist frescos and some simple architecture.

Aq Kupruk II, or Ghār-i Mār, is another rock shelter, probably the most productive of the three sites, producing material rom all periods except the Kushan-Sasanian. About 10% of the occupation area was excavated.

Aq Kupruk III, is an open air site on the river terrace consisting of two periods, both in the Epi-Palaeolithic.

Aq Kupruk IV, was excavated briefly by McBurney nearer to the village, producing a "Middle Mousterian" type of industry differing to that found by Dupree.

Finds included an extensive and sophisticated stone tool industry, very early stone sculpture, domisticated sheep and goat remains, fragments of beaten copper from the ceramic Neolithic, many projectile points, terracotta and simple jewellery.


AMNH - excavated material.

BIAS - flint and stone.

Kabul Museum - excavated material, stone head.


1959 Dupree, American Universities Field Staff - survey.

1960 Hayashi & Sahara, Kyoto University - survey.

1962 & 65 Dupree, AMNH - excavations.

1971 McBurney, Cambridge University - sondage.

External links


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