Karahantepe is an archaeological
site in Şanlıurfa Province in Turkey. The site is close to
Göbekli Tepe and archaeologists have also uncovered T-shaped
The site is located near Yağmurlu and roughly 35 kilometers east
of Göbekli Tepe, and is often called the sister site of Göbekli
It is part of the Göbeklitepe Culture and Karahantepe
Excavations project, and surveys were initiated two years ago by
Istanbul University. The area is known as “Keçilitepe” by local
Excavate Ancient Settlement That May Predate
12,000-Year-Old Gobekli Tepe
archaeologists unearthed the world's oldest ancient
settlement, older than the 12,000-year-old Gobekli Tepe?
Here's what we know about Karahan Tepe so far.
In a new social
media post about Karahan Tepe, the Turkish Minister of Culture
and Tourism Mehmet Nuri Ersoy stated that although it is not
confirmed, Karahan Tepe is probably an older settlement than
It has been scientifically proven that the structures found in
Karahan Tepe as a result of the archaeological excavations that
have been going on for 2 years are contemporary with Gobekli
Tepe. However, Minister Ersoy said, “We have not received the
final confirmation in Karahan Tepe, but we will probably have
reached an older excavation center (from Gobekli Tepe)”, adding
that the structures in Karahantepe may be the oldest remains of
Brief Introduction into the
Karahan Tepe archaeological site
Karahan Tepe is
located in Sanliurfa, Turkey, and was originally discovered in
1997. Unfortunately, excavations did not begin until about 22
years later in September 2019.
Last year, with the permission of the Ministry of Culture and
Tourism, the Istanbul University Prehistoric Archeology
Department faculty member Prof. Dr. Necmi Karul began
His team was able to locate about 250 massive obelisks through
geophysical and georadar studies carried out in Karahan Tepe.
This discovery ultimately made the Karahan Tepe site a major
place of interest as the researchers believed the obelisks were
Even in aerial photographs, it was possible to see and count the
obelisks on the surface of the archaeological site.
The stones resemble those at the world’s oldest temple – Gobekli
Tepe, but Karahan Tepe has now been teased to be the new most
ancient archaeological site. We will be expecting the official
statement in the following days.
However, the scientific excavation team is not very keen on
these discussions about which one is older. They point out that
it does not matter whether Karahan Tepe is older or newer than
Göbeklitepe. What they mean is that this fact will not change
its scientific value.
What I also need to mention about Karahan Tepe and Gobekli Tepe
as an additional piece of information is that there are another
dozen ancient sites in the region thought to be from this
period. What this means is that we will be hearing a lot from
Prof. Dr. Karul in the upcoming years and undoubtedly, ancient
history will be rewritten in one way or another.
New Discoveries at Karahan Tepe could change history
Interesting finds were uncovered in Karahan Tepe during the
excavations this year. However, the Ministry of Culture and
Tourism will make a statement about this year’s excavations in
the coming days.
Excavation Director Prof. Dr. Necmi Karul said the following:
“Our Ministry is very excited about the Karahan Tepe
excavations. Therefore, I find it appropriate for them to inform
you about the excavation results themselves.”
He highlights that his team discovered valuable signs of human
symbolism. He says they discovered new structures and buildings,
as well as statues.
Below is a short video which I am attaching, provided by the
Turkish Ministry. In it, you can see the head of a statue with a
50 cm diameter. It was discovered in situ at Karahan Tepe,
carved into the bedrock.
Currently, the excavation work at Karahan Tepe has been stopped
due to the pandemic that completely changed our lives this year.
However, Prof. Dr. Karul hopes that work will continue in 2021
and says that they have at least another year of excavations
Connection with Gobekli Tepe
To start, I need
to quote Minister Nuri Ersoy one last time:
“Göbekli Tepe has a history of 12,000 years. Our new settlement
in Karahan Tepe will be older. The comprehensive works will be
sustained in the site under the supervision of professor Necmi
Karul, the head of the excavation team, next year. We will
probably have a new discovery that will make an overwhelming
impression on the world again after Göbekli Tepe.”
What this means is that Karahan Tepe could potentially take
Gobekli Tepe’s place as the main archaeological site of interest
in Turkey and the world. However, we shouldn’t forget the
significance of Gobekli Tepe and all the mysteries that remain
Now that more and more ancient temples and sites get unearthed
in the region of Gobekli Tepe, we have even more right to
believe in the “myths” of the ancient advanced civilizations
that were lost in time.
Here are several questions we have asked more than once or
twice… How was it possible for nomadic cultures to build such
massive structures with multi-ton blocks of stone? How did they
know geometry to this unbelievable extent and how did they put
each stone slab with such precision to form near-perfect
geometrical figures in their structures?
Especially in 2020, archaeologists suggested that the
geometrical patterns at Gobekli Tepe are more advanced than
previously thought. Nothing in its structure is random. Every
piece of stone has been purposely organized and placed where it
should be. Where did this knowledge come from?
In other words, there is a lot to expect from Karahan Tepe at
this current moment. So far, we know of the 250 Neolithic
obelisks, buildings, and statues. We should look beyond whether
it is older and newer than Gobekli Tepe. We must establish a
connection between the two ancient sites because there is no
possible scenario where there is none.
And when it comes to the possibility of the existence of an
advanced ancient society, I personally believe there should be
no doubt about it. By this, I do not mean a technologically
advanced society in the meaning of electronics, cars, etc.
What I believe is that there was an ancient civilization (or
more than one) that was/were more architecturally advanced than
we are. It is visible in countless ancient sites and in the fact
that modern architecture still cannot recreate many of the
ancient wonders of the world if it had to.
What we can say is that history gets rewritten each year. Every
new discovery sheds light on something significant from our past
but also opens up another pile of new questions about the dawn
of humanity. What I believe is that just like modern archaeology
rewrites history, it has been erased at some point in time
Sites like Karahan Tepe and Gobekli Tepe simply don’t fit in the
modern version of human history. Where is the real truth and
what should humanity do to get this knowledge back?