The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



(also Kobystan), a low-mountain and foothill region of the extreme southeastern spurs of the Greater Caucasus, located to the west and southwest of the Apsheron Peninsula in the Azerbaijan SSR. The absolute elevation is up to 1,047 m (Mount Gidzhaki). The undulating relief comprises folded structures composed of sandy-clayey rock, marl, and limestone. There are mud volcanoes in the south. Semidesert landscapes predominate. There are winter pastures.

Within Kobustan, in the basin of the Dzheirankechmaz River, more than 4,000 ancient examples of cave art (various types of engravings; paintings) have been found. These include scenes depicting harvests, sacrifices, dancing, boats with rowers, human figures, and various animals. The examples date from the Mesolithic period to the Middle Ages. In addition to the cave art, Stone Age habitation sites have been found in caves as well as rock-shelters. A settlement from the third millennium B.C., barrows from the Bronze Age, and other remains have also been found in Kobustan. A historical-art open-air museum is located in Kobustan.


Dzhafarzade, I. M. “Naskal’nye izobrazheniia Kobystana (Azerbaid-zhanskaia SSR).” In the collection Arkheologicheskie issledovaniia v Azerbaidzhane. Baku, 1965.
Formozov, A. A. Ocherki po pervobytnomu iskusstvu. Moscow, 1969. (Materialy i issledovaniia po arkheologii SSSR, no. 165.)


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.