CULTURE


Avey Mountain

Baku, January 11, AZERTAC

Avey Mountain is one of the peaks and a white-greyish ridge in the Small Caucasus Mountains located between Georgia and Gazakh district of Azerbaijan. It is 12 km away from the village of Dash Salahli.

There is an ancient Albanian temple on the top of the mountain. The word Avey is interpreted as a lunar house. "Ay" means "moon" and "ev" - "house", Avey - "house of the moon".

There are many monuments on Avey Mountain. The sites of temples, old settlements, ancient graveyards and about 30 artificial caves from Paleolithic times have been discovered on the slopes of the mountain. For this reason, "Avey" State Historical-Cultural Reserve was set up here in 1989. Damjili cave is the biggest cave among Avey Mountain caves. It has an area of 360 km2. The front side of the cave has been destroyed as a result of floods over the years. The height of the cave's rear side is 4 m (13.1 ft).

The name Damjili is an allusion to "weeping water", that rinses through the natural cracks in the limestone cave walls. Water of Damjili spring dribbles down from the flinty top of the cave through the natural cracks. Pure and cold falling water drops are accumulating in the dent below and forming a spring. That is why the spring is called Damjili, literally meaning "with drops".

Various stone tools, arrowheads, flint knives, remains of hearth and fossilized bones of animals have been found in the cave.

Damjılı cave was discovered for the first time in 1953 during the joint expedition of Russian scientist Zamyatin and Azerbaijani archaeologist Mammadali Husyenov.

Fragments of pottery dated back to the Bronze Age and Middle Ages were discovered from the primary excavations in the cave. The Paleolithic archaeological expedition formed under the History Museum of Academy of Science of Azerbaijan in 1956 conducted fundamental excavations in Damjili cave between 1956 and 1958 under the supervision of Mammadali Huseynov. In the result of this excavation, around 7,000 stone tools and more than 2,000 bones of hunting animals were found from different cultural layers of the cave. The tools found in the Damjili cave trace back to the Middle Paleolithic – Mousterian period, Upper Paleolithic, Mezolithic, Neolithic, Eneolithic periods and Bronze Age.

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