The Naxcivan Archaeological Project

Naxcıvan is one of the first projects in the least explored area of the Near East.

The Naxcıvan Archaeological Project, a joint American-Azerbaijani program of surveys and excavations, studies the north-eastern frontier of Greater Mesopotamia. Ongoing surveys reveal how the interaction between nomads, local centers and external empires created a unique political landscape in the Caucasus. Our work at Oglanqala, the largest archaeological site in Naxcıvan, Azerbaijan, analyzes economic and cultural imperialism at this fortress during the Achaemenid Persian Empire (550-330 BCE). Current excavations focus on unearthing the ancient imperial palace, where some of the first evidence of writing in Azerbaijan was found and exploring a neighborhood in order to understand how imperial policies affected everyday life.

Photo caption: Northwest tower at Oglanqala.


Oglanqala from the eastWhen
Oglanqala is ca. 1200BC-1900 CE. The associated survey is from ca. 5000 BCE to the present.

Oglanqala is located near the modern city of Sharur in the Naxcivan Autonomous Republic, Azerbaijan.

The Sharur plain of Naxcivan, Azerbaijan Researchers
Lauren Ristvet, University of Pennsylvania
Veli Baxseliyev, ANAS
Sefer Asurov, ANAS

Additional Sponsors
National Science Foundation
Azerbaijan National Academy of Sciences (ANAS)

Visit the Naxcıvan Archaeological Project


3260 South Street
Philadelphia, PA 19104
(215) 898-4000


Tuesday-Sunday: 10:00am - 5:00pm
First Wednesdays: 10:00am - 8:00pm
Monday: CLOSED


Sign up for our e-newsletter

Trip Advisor
University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology | Penn Logo
3260 South Street | Philadelphia, PA 19104 | (215) 898-4000 | Contacts

With Art Philadelphia