All Photos: Gallagher
58. Dr. Idris Aliyev organized the removal of the kurgan stones from the original archaeological site in Yeni Turkan on the Absheron Peninsula to the yard of the Gala Museum to save the ancient rock arrangement from being destroyed by local quarrying.
59. Female and male stele
monuments set up at the new location at Gala Museum.
61. Male and female stele statues found at a burial site (kurgan) at Yeni Turkan. The heads of both statues had been broken. Both had been ceremoniously buried in a manner afforded important leaders. Could it be that the burial represented a transition from one belief system to another, brought on by geopolitical changes? Perhaps, the statues represented earlier gods-perhaps of Earth Mother goddess and her counterpart-a male god of the sky-when they were no longer deemed relevant. The female statue orients to the South West, the direction of the Winter Solstice sunset. Note the gap in the circular perimeter wall. Speculation: Could it be a doorway that allowed the spirit of the goddess to leave and return?
63. Close up of female statue head showing headdress ornamentation. Where the head is broken, there is a cut across the headdress. It's not clear whether it represents a garland or a necklace.
64. View from the south of the Goddess kurgan with the antechamber oriented towards the South East. No doubt, the orientations all have significant meaning but they need to be carefully studied and interpreted.
65-66. Stones carved in female shape on display at the Caravanserai in the shadow of Maiden Tower. Question: Could they represent the Goddess of the Earth?