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Double Bull Basin and Portal Lions

The large double bull shaped basin was academically first noted by Gerhart Bartsch in 1930. Apparently in a secondary location it was situated near the top of a höyük overlooking the Kızılırmak river by the Dokuz village in the Savcılı district about 50 km west of the city of Kırşehir (the first photo below). In the 1950s, as the village and the höyük was to be flooded during the construction of the Hirfanlı Dam, the monument was moved by the dam engineers to a location near the Hirfanlı village. In 2008 it was moved to the nearby museum of the Japanese Institute of Anatolian Archaeology in Kaman. It is carved of granite and measures about 2.80 meters in length, 1.85 meters in width and 1.20 meters in height. The basin at the top has two drain holes that lead to the mouths of the bulls. It is likely to have been used for ritualistic purposes. A date in the Hittite Empire period has been suggested but more specific dating remains speculative.

Recent findings indicate that the rock of the bull basin was possibly originated from a nearby granite hillside that served as a quarry during the Hittite period (M. Gözen Sevinç, Arkeoloji ve Sanat). The location known as Sivrikale (also called Güneş Çöğü) is a hillside covered with massive granite blocks between the villages of Savcılıebeyit and Savcılıkışla. A couple of unfinished gate lions were found at the same site. The second row of the pictures below show one of them in situ, next to the rock from where it was cut. Both lions are about 2.5 meters in length and 1.7 meters in height and are currently decorating the museum entrance at the Japanese Institute of Anatolian Archaeology.


Click on the pictures for larger images.

The Double bull basin at Hirfanlı
G. Bartsch, 1933 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006 T. Bilgin, 2006
Unfinished Gate Lions
Unfinished gate lion in the quarry - M. G. Sevinç, 1999 The second unfinished gate lion - M. G. Sevinç, 1999 The second unfinished gate lion - M. G. Sevinç, 1999
At their current locations
B. Bilgin, 2009 B. Bilgin, 2009 E. Anıl, 2009 T. Bilgin, 2009


Literature:
Bartsch, G. "Eine neue chetitische Skulptur in Mittel-Anatolian," AfO 9, 1933: 50—52.
Güterbock, H. G. "Das Stierbecken von Dokuz," IstMitt 19-20, 1969-70: 93- 95 and pls. 13—14.
Sevinç, M. G. "Kırşehir Kızılırmak Yayı İçinde Üç Hitit Anıtı," Arkeoloji ve Sanat 92, 1999: 33—41.
Sevinç, M. G. "Kırşehir Kızılırmak Yayı İçinde Üç Hitit Yontusu," Araştırma Sonuçları Toplantısı 18.2, 1996: 169—80.

Image sources:
Gerhart Bartsch, 1933.
Tayfun Bilgin, 2006, 2009.
M. Gözen Sevinç, 1999.
Bora Bilgin, 2009.
Ertuğrul Anıl, 2009.