In the summer of 2017 archaeologists were digging near the Crimean city of Kerch. As they got deeper, they discovered some human remains and artifacts from the Sarmatian civilization. The Sarmatians, actually an Iranian people, had a sophisticated culture which lasted some 900 years from the 5th century BC onwards.
The dig was taking place at a burial site in Kyz-Aul. One of the most interesting finds was the well preserved skeleton of a child. Aged around 18 months to two years, archaeologists believe he was a boy destined to become a warrior. And as we shall see, the boy’s skeleton had a very distinctive feature.
Close to the skeleton, which dates back to the second century, the researchers discovered a clay pot and some beads. On the wrist of the skeleton itself was a copper bracelet. But why were the archaeologists digging at this site at this particular time? To answer that, we need to turn to the Crimea region’s geopolitics.