Eurasian Soil Science

, Volume 50, Issue 5, pp 539–548 | Cite as

Modern and buried soils of kurgans in the forest-steppe zone of the Middle Volga region (by the example of Komintern I kurgan)

  • S. P. LomovEmail author
  • A. V. Lyganov
  • A. A. Khisyametdinova
  • I. N. Spiridonova
  • N. N. Solodkov
Genesis and Geography of Soils


The construction of the Volga–Kama cascade of water reservoirs and hydroelectric power stations in the middle of the 20th century resulted in the inundation of vast areas and the development of abrasion along the shores that threatens many monuments of the archaeological and cultural heritage. The soils buried under northernmost kurgans of the Lugovskaya culture dating back to the 15th–14th centuries BC (kurgan Komintern I) were studied on the surface of the second terrace of the Kama River near its confluence with the Volga River. Burial sites of kurgan Komintern III were subjected to destruction in 1981, and archaeological excavations of kurgan Komintern II were performed in 2008. The danger of complete disappearance of these archaeological sites necessitated their thorough study with the use of multiple methods, including special paleosol studies. The soils buried under the kurgans ceased to be active components of the soil cover about 3500 years ago. They preserve information on the paleoenvironmental conditions before their burying. The analysis of morphological features and physical, physicochemical, and chemical properties of the buried soils attests to their chernozemic nature. Background surface soils that have passed through the entire cycle of the Holocene pedogenesis have evolved since that time into gray forest soils (Luvic Greyzemic Phaeozems) under forest vegetation. These soils are characterized by the increased acidity of the surface horizons (pHКСl 4.3) and the development of lessivage. Data on the coefficients of mineral weathering in the buried paleosols and background surface soils attest to the identical precipitation both for the surface and buried soils in the Middle and Late Holocene.


buried soils buried chernozems soddy-calcareous soils dark gray forest soils 


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Copyright information

© Pleiades Publishing, Ltd. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. P. Lomov
    • 1
    Email author
  • A. V. Lyganov
    • 2
  • A. A. Khisyametdinova
    • 2
  • I. N. Spiridonova
    • 1
  • N. N. Solodkov
    • 1
  1. 1.Penza State University of Architecture and ConstructionPenzaRussia
  2. 2.Khalikov Institute of ArchaeologyTatarstan Academy of SciencesKazan, Tatarstan RepublicRussia

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