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Avar Chronology Revisited, And The Question Of Ethnicity In The Avar Qaganate

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Chapter Summary

The end of the Avar qaganate, an event historians place in the early 800s, has been dated by various archaeologists at various points in time between 800 and 900. While absolute dates for the chronology of the Avar age remain under discussion, great progress has been achieved in establishing a relative chronology of archaeological assemblages, especially for the later parts of the Avar age for which no coin-dated assemblages have so far been found. The interpretation advanced in this chapter is based on a much improved chronology, itself the result of refined methods combining traditional seriation with radiocarbon dating. The author hopes that an improved chronology may contribute to a new evaluation of the problem of ethnicity in the archaeology of the early Middle Ages. Sebastian Brather's critique of traditional approaches has done much to advance our awareness of the pitfalls of an archaeology of ethnicity.

Keywords: Avar chronology; Avar qaganate; ethnicity; radiocarbon dating; Sebastian Brather



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