The First Excavated Site of the Méhtelek Group of the Early Neolithic Körös Culture in the Carpathian Basin

by Nándor Kalicz With a contribution by Attila Kreiter and György Szakmány
Archaeolingua Central European Series


Méhtelek lies in the easternmost corner of County Szabolcs-Szatmár (Carpathians, eastern Hungary). The importance of this archaeological site is manifold. The finds from the 1973 excavation and the fresh archaeological information provided by the site confirmed earlier speculations that the broader region had been part of the Early Neolithic world. The finds enabled the separation of the Méhtelek group, a variant of the Körös culture of the Alföld (the Hungarian Plain), as well as the precise cultural and chronological attribution of several assemblages of stray finds, which had earlier simply been classified as Neolithic, to the Méhtelek group of the Alföld Körös culture. Assemblages related to or identical with the finds from Méhtelek came to light in the north-easterly region of the Alföld (princAally in County Szabolcs-Szatmár-Bereg) and in the neighbouring regions of Romania and the Ukraine. Although the number of known sites is low, the currently known fourteen sites outline the boundaries of the group’s distribution. The number of sites will undoubtedly increase in the future. Owing to various technical and other reasons, many decades have elapsed between the site’s excavation and the publication of the final report on the Méhtelek site and its finds. No more than a few preliminary and incomplete reports have been published to date, some of them leading to misunderstandings and erroneous conclusions. The time is more than rAe for the publication of this report.