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Urartu was an ancient state which existed from the 9th to 6th centuries BC, located on the territory around Lake Van (also known as the Van Kingdom), which includes part of modern Armenia and the fertile lands of the Aras (Araxes) Valley.

In the summer of 1938 an expedition led by Boris Piotrovsky began excavations in the environs of Yerevan at Karmir-blur (Red Hill). Important material for the study of Urartu culture was found out during excavations. The ancient Urartu fortress of Teishebaini and urban buildings were found at the foot of the hill. Constructed in the 8th century BC, the fortress was the residence of deputies of the Urartu King Rusa. The fortress was sacked and burned by the Scythians in the 6th century BC, but the lower part of the citadel with its storerooms and workshops was well preserved.

Artefacts found during the excavations provide us with a very full picture of the development of crafts, farming, art and the written language in Urartu. There were fragments of iron sickles, clay vessels with wheat and barley, stone tools for making flour, enormous wine vessels half buried in the earthen floor, and 97 marvellous bowls of sparkling golden bronze (when struck they produce a long-lasting melodic ring like a bell, and each of them has its own particular key). Numerous bronze arrowheads, a large shield and a helmet bearing inscriptions from the time of King Sarduri II were also found.

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Complete playbill of all St. Petersburg,Russia theatres, shows, concerts, etcComplete playbill of all St. Petersburg,Russia theatres, shows, concerts, etc. !
World-known music festival "The Stars of the White Nights". Artistic director - Valery Gergiev (Mariinky (Kirov) Opera and Ballet)World-known music festival "The Stars of the White Nights".
Artistic director - Valery Gergiev (Mariinky (Kirov) Opera and Ballet)

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