The first museum in Ankara was founded at the tower of castle, named Akkale in 1921 by the Director of Culture Mr Mübarek Galip. Besides this museum, the works were also collected in Augustus Temple and Roman Bath. When the Hittite Works in surrounding cities began to be sent to Ankara with the idea of Atatürk onestablishing a “Hittite Museum” in the centre, a museum building with a large area was necessary. Mahmud Pasha Bazaar and Kursunlu Inn, in deserted and ruined state, was suggested to be used as museum complex by Mr Hamit Zübeyr Koşay, the Director of Culture of that time, to Mr Saffet Arıkan, Vice-Ministry of Education of that period. Upon being approved, the complexes went into restoration between the dates 1938 and 1968. With the completion of most parts of vaulted hall in the middle of bazaar in 1940, the pieces began to be placed. While the reparation of buildings continued in 1943, the middle section of the museum was opened to public visits. In 1948, the
administration of the museum quitted using Akkale as a storehouse, and moved to four rooms of Kursunlu Inn, the reparation of which was completed. The original form of five shops was kept, and the parts between the shops were removed,thus a large corridor was opened for exhibiting the works. The structure of museum got its last form in the year 1968. In Kursunlu Inn, which is currently used as administrative section, there are research rooms, library, conference hall, laboratory and workshops, and Mahmud Pahsa Bazaar is used as exhibition hall. In Anatolian Civilizations Museum, one of rare museums in the world with its collections that are peculiar to it, Anatolian Archaeology is exhibited chronologically starting fromPalaeolithic Era to our current life in the historical complexes of Otoman Era. It was rewarded as the “Best Museum in Europe” in 1997.
Palaeolithic or Stone Age started approximately two million years ago and ended ten thousand years ago. Palaeolithic Age humans, living under the restraining and determining pressure of nature, represents hunting and collective communities. They
lived in rock shelters, caves and in shelters they pitched in open air. Although Anatolian Palaeolithic Age was not researched enough, it is understood in the light of findings dating back to early, interim and late Palaeolithic Ages, that there was a dense population. In comprehensive excavations carried out in Lower Euphrates Basin, Antalya Karain Cave and Yarımburgaz, tools made of bone, needles, axes, digging tools, and ornamental belongings were unearthed.
Neolithic Age (B.C. 8000-5500)
Neolithic Age began with the formation of the first settled communities of mankind history. During this age, founded in some places in Anatolia, the structures, built according to a certain style, hand tolls made of stone or bone, weapons, ornamental belongings represent the settled village samples. The most developed Neolithic centre was Çatalhöyük, on the northern part of Çumra District in Konya, and Hacılar Höyüğü, on the south-western part of Burdur. The most important characteristic of Çatalhöyük houses is that the houses are decorated with paints and pictures. In the ornaments, mostly human hands, human figures, hunting scenes and landscapes are depicted. The hand-made potteries were decorated with geometrical designs.The necklaces, made of sea shells and various stones, and obsidian mirrors are the evidences that reflect ornamental belongings of people of that period. Çatalhöyük people buried the dead beneath the bottom of their houses, and they left presents nearby. The oldest known woven pieces were unearthed in Çatalhöyük excavations. Hacılar Höyüğü differs from Çatalhöyük in that the dead were buried out of the city. In Hacılar Höyüğü, goddess sculptures made of clay are in sitting or standing position in every house. It is understood from some plant remains, sickles made of horn and flint that they were engaged in agriculture.
In this age, named as Calcholithic Age, besides stone tools, copper was used and it is evident in stability in some
settlement areas such as Hacılar, Canhasan, Kuruçay, and Alacahöyük. The most outstanding distinction is that besides potteries with bright glaze and single-colour, bowls painted in line and decorated, big vases, rectangular pots, jugs, earthenware jars are in different forms as it can be understood from the findings in Hacılar Höyüğü. In Calcholithic Age, it is not possible to state there was cultural integrity in Anatolia. Canhasan, on the northern part of Karaman, was a settlement area, having commercial and cultural contact thanks to its location. In Canhasan, there are some important findings such as copper bracelet, mace stick.
Old Bronze Age (B.C. 3000-1950)
Anatolia entered Old Bronze Age at the end of BC 4000, and they managed to have bronze by mixing tin with copper.
In addition to bronze, they used the metals such as copper, gold, and silver for their various needs. In this age, trade and metal craftsmanship reached a significant level. The findings unearthed in Alacahöyük, Eskiyapar, Kültep Mahmutlar, Kayapınar prove this fact. Decorated bull and deer statutes, sun disks, women statutes representing mother goddess, ornamental belongings reflect the level they reached in mining.
Assyrian Trade Colonies Age
This age is the beginning of written history in Anatolia. The Mesopotamians, aware of the
Anatolia’s wealth, had systematic and broad commercial relations with their neighbours on the north in Assyrian pioneering, and they introduced their cylindrical stamp tradition and language, foreign to Anatolia. Thus, Anatolia entered historical ages after 1950 BC.
Old Hittite and Hittite Empire
The first political union in Anatolia in 2000 BC was formed by the Hittite in Kızılırmak Curve. Their capital was Boğazköy (Hattushash) and İnandık, Eskiyapar, Alacahöyük, Alişar are Hittite centres with rich and significant findings. Relief writing tradition, the best samples of which were founded in centres such as İnandık, continued in this age. In Boğazköy, the Hittite temples bear similar particulars in terms of plan and technique.Big statutes, little god statutes made of ivory, bronze and gold with the same style of orthostads are the important findings. Bronze cuneiform tablet, 23, 5x34, 5 in size, which was found during the excavations in Boğazköy, is the only bronze tablet to be found in Anatolia so far.
Late Hittites (B.C. 1200-700)
Following the collapse of Hittite Empire, some Hittites founded state-cities in southern and south- eastern Anatolia and they lived Late Hittite Domain. Malatya Aslantepe, Kargamış, Sakçagözü represent important Late Hittite Domainsettlement areas. The common destiny of Late Hittite state-kingdoms was the hieroglyph. Besides Kargamış relieves, it is possible to see hieroglyph in Andaval relief, Sultanhanı and Köylüfolu steles. In the museum, Late Hittite art is present on stone works and pieces.
The Phrygians (B.C. 1200-700)
The Phrygians, coming through Balkans in approximately 1200 BC, held the whip hand in Central
Anatolia and their capital city was Gordion. The works unearthed in Gordion tumulus and ruins are the best samples of Phrygian art. Its centre was Gordion and Sakarya Region, Afyon, Kütahya, Eskişehir were affiliated to Phrygia. A structure type called megaron is an important one employed in Western Anatolia. The Capital Gordion was a fortified city and surrounded by strong walls. Megarons were located in these walls. Phrygian architecture was of a rooted and developed tradition. Rock monuments, tumulus are the most important ruins. The tumulus, considered to be the one of King Midas, is 50 metre high and 300
metre diameter. In the excavations carried out in this tumulus, the Works found in grave room are perfect. The fact that they made unique belongings and furniture by decorating them with geometrical motives is understood from the findings unearthed in the excavations.
Ourartus (B.C. 850-600)
The Ourartus, reaching an advanced level in mining and architecture in some certain centres such as Altıntepe, Adilcevaz, Kayalıdere, Patnos, Van, Çavuştepe, lived in Eastern Anatolia in a civilized way. In the golden age of Ourartu State, they extended their lands on a large area from Lake Urmiye to Euphrates Valley, from the southern part of Caucasian to Black Sea coastal line, and Mousul, Aleppo. They made great strides by drying the marshes, and by constructing water channels and unnatural lakes. Ivory craftsmanship, bronze plaque decoration and stamps were the important Phrygian arts.
Ankara through classical ages and eras The works, which have been found in Ankara and its surroundings, are exhibited at the lower storey of museum under the name of Ankara Section through Ages with the golden, silver, glass, marble, bronze works of Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine Eras after the first half and second half of 1000 BC as well as coins starting from the first coin to the currently used ones..
When the Hittite Works in surrounding cities began to be sent to Ankara with the idea of Atatürk on establishing a “Hittite Museum” in the centre, a museum building with a large area was necessary The first museum in Ankara was founded at the tower of castle, named Akkale
in 1921 by the Director of Culture Mr Mübarek Galip The structure of museum got its last form in the year 1968 In Boğazköy, the Hittite temples bear similar particulars in terms of plan and technique