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Sunday, 20 May 2012

Alaca Höyük

The Sphinx Gate at Alaca Hoyuk

Hieroglyphic reliefs

Orthostats or reliefs approaching the Sphinx gate

Following on from my last post on Hittites and previous photos of Hatussa, I thought I'd post some more photos from our trip to Turkey last year. Alaca Höyük is an important Hattian and Hittite archaeological site located 36km north east of Hatussa. The remains such as the Sphinx gate date from the fourteenth century BC, while the thirteen shaft grave 'Royal Tombs' date from the earlier Hattian period (ca. 2350-2150BC). The site was occupied earlier in the Chalcolithic period and later by the Phrygians. Many of the original reliefs and artefacts from the site are now in the Museum of Anatolian Civilisations in Ankara. There is a museum at the site.

King and Queen praying to a bull before the altar

Double headed eagle with a rabbit in each claw

Close up shot of the Sphinx on the right

View of site and ongoing excavations
Stone base of walls

Entrance to the tunnel

Inside the tunnel

Another view of the site
View of the reconstructed Hattian shaft grave 'Royal Tombs'

View of a reconstructed grave

Occupant of a grave
Walls near the shaft graves
Storage jars on the verandah of the Alaca Hoyuk museum

A reconstuction of the double headed eagle 

Tea pot in the museum
Deer with antlers from the shaft graves
Painted jug in the museum


  1. Great photos Cyrus. Cool post.

  2. Very cool, I was in Turkey this February but didn't know this site existed.

  3. Thanks Rodger and Sean, it was a very cool site. There is a good guide - Anatolia: On the Trail of the Hittite Civilization - but you need a car to get there, we were with a guide.