the remains of a settlement from the Aeneolithic period and the Bronze and early Iron ages in southern Afghanistan, 55 km northwest of the city of Kandahar. It was excavated from 1951 to 1958 by a French expedition. The remains of habitations of settled farmers were discovered in the lowest levels of the site (late fourth millennium B.C.). These farmers used a potter’s wheel to produce painted pottery similar to that of Iran (Sialk). Copper was known to this culture.

Terra-cotta statuettes and stone seals have been found in the succeeding level, which dates to the middle of the third millennium B.C. Cast copper and bronze objects and group burial chambers have also been found. Links with cultures of Pakistan (Quetta) and Middle Asia (Geoksiur and Karatepe) can be traced.

In the late third millennium and the early second millennium B.C., the Mundigak culture reached the height of its development. Stone sculpture and remains of monumental architecture (a temple and the residence of a local ruler) have been discovered. Vessels from this period are decorated with depictions of animals and plants. Links with India (Harappa) and Iran (Hissar) have been noted. In the second millennium B.C., Mundigak’s culture went into decline, and its area of settlement decreased in size. Pottery was once again made by hand. The upper levels of the Mundigak site date to the middle of the first millennium B.C.


Masson, V. M. Sredniaia Aziia i Drevnii Vostok. Moscow-Leningrad, 1964.
Casal, J. M. Fouilles de Mundigak, vols. 1–2. Paris, 1961.


References in periodicals archive ?
The BMAC seals appear to have been used as part of a system of administrative control of trade and production in a fashion similar to seals 1000 years older from Mundigak and Shahr i-Sokhta II (Ferioli et al.
The Bronze Age civilization of Bactria and Margiana emerged after 2500 BC from the local cultures represented at the sites of Sarazm, Mundigak and Shar-i Sokhta, incorporating elements from Turkmenia (especially in Margiana), from the Indus (pottery techniques and some iconographic traits) and from Iran through the Proto-Elamite past and by an Elamite influx (techniques, parts of iconography and mythology), but also incorporating old Central Asian features connected with Inner Asia.
By such an approach also it becomes clear that the influx from Indus and Elamite Iran is more technological and morphological in a broad sense than ideological and societal, and that the Oxus Civilization is not an organic development of the large cities of Namazga IV-V, but above all a descendant of the small piedmont towns with fortified palaces like Mundigak and Sarazm, and of the previous Proto-Elamite expansion, in relation with a permanent steppe connection, from the Afanasevo-Okunevo-Kel'teminar times to the Andronovo-Kajrakkum-Tazabagjab period.