March 5, 2020 - 11:11 AMT
PanARMENIAN.Net - The 3,000-year-old remains of an ancient Armenian fortification have been discovered at the bottom of Turkey’s largest lake, Archaeology World reveals.
The underwater excavations were led by Van Yüzüncü Yıl University and the governorship of Turkey’s eastern Bitlis Province.
The castle is said to belong to the Iron Age Armenian civilization, also known as the Kingdom of Van, Urartu, Ararat and Armenia. The lake itself is believed to have been formed by a crater caused by a volcanic eruption of Mount Nemrut near the province of Van.
Divers exploring Lake Van discovered the incredibly well-preserved wall of a castle, thought to have been built by the Urartu civilization.
Over the course of ten years, the group of researchers captured images of pearl mullets, corals and even a sunken Russian ship.
Their search finally paid off, when they uncovered castle stonework that has been protected from the ravages of time by the lake’s highly alkaline waters. It is thought the stone structure was built by the Urartians, as the rocks used were favoured by civilization.
The castle, as well as a number of villages and settlements in the area, were built at a time when water levels were much lower than they are today.
The Kingdom of Urartu was an ancient country in the mountainous region southeast of the Black Sea and southwest of the Caspian Sea. Today the region is divided among Armenia, eastern Turkey, and northwestern Iran.
Mentioned in Assyrian sources from the early 13th century BC, Urartu enjoyed considerable political power in the Middle East in the 9th and 8th centuries BC.