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