Image - Mizyn: mammoth-bone dwelling (reconstruction). Image - Mizyn: mammoth-bone dwelling (reconstruction).

Mizyn [Мізин; Мізинська стоянка, Mizynska stoianka]. An Upper Paleolithic site located on the right bank of the Desna River in Chernihiv oblast. Excavated intermittently from 1908 until 1961, the site is one of the better known examples of Magdalenian culture in Ukraine. The site contained five circular dwellings, the largest being 6 m in diameter. The dwellings were constructed by using wooden poles which were covered with animal skins and reinforced by bones or tusks. The inhabitants hunted mammoths, deer, and other animals. Approximately 113,000 pieces of flint were uncovered, of which 4,500 could be identified as tools; spear tips and needles were also found in considerable quantities. Many artifacts were excavated, including stylized sculptures of women and animals (particularly mammoths). Geometric and meandering decorative motifs were found on the female sculptures as well as on bone bracelets found at the site. Some examples of shell jewelry were also excavated. The collection is now housed in Kyiv at the Academy of Sciences of Ukraine Archeological Museum and the National Museum of the History of Ukraine.

[This article originally appeared in the Encyclopedia of Ukraine, vol. 3 (1993).]

Image - A Paleolithic bracelet excavated in Mizyn, Chernihiv oblast, ca 15,000 BC (incised mammoth bone). Image - A mammoth-bone bracelet excavated at the Mizyn archeological site.

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