sequence has been established. On the other is the Near East, with approximatehistorical chronologies. The gulf between these two regions can be likened to a’geological gap’ — a ’fault line.’In addition to the improvement in the geo-chronological methodology, there needs to be intensive research in the field of comparative chronology either side of the above-mentioned gap, and, as much as ispossible, to bridge that gap — an urgent task of modern archaeological research.
This ’fault line’ that tears Europe from the Near East is focused on the BalkanPeninsula and in Caucasia. Chronological problems of these regions have paramountimportance in the foundation of a general Near Eastern - east European chronologicalsystem. In such a system, Caucasia forms an important link in the Old World'schronological chain. Yet the dating of Caucasian evidence is, in many cases, madepossible through comparative materials from well-dated Near Eastern strata andthrough imported objects from well-dated Syro-Mesopotamian contexts. The resultingchronological framework reached, underpins the comparative and absolutechronologies of the Caucasian regions in the Early Metal Age.Before Caucasian chronological data can be included in a common Near Eastern - eastEuropean chronological system, a ‘pan-Caucasian’ chronological scale needs to bedevised. In order to construct this scale, it is necessary to address each
of thecultural-geographical regions of Caucasia. We have seven such regions in Caucasia:1. Western Trans-Caucasia (actually western Georgia)
2. South-western Trans-Caucasia (north-easternmost part of Turkey)
3. Central Trans-Caucasia (eastern Georgia)
4. Southern Trans-Caucasia (Armenia)
5. Eastern Trans-Caucasia (Azerbaijan)
6. North-western Caucasia
7. North-eastern Caucasia
The last two areas are divided by the middle flow of the Terek River.Between all these areas transitional and/or contact zones can be distinguished. CentralTrans-Caucasia plays a key role as it is meeting point of all other regions and thus itoffers a common ground for the creation of the all-Caucasian chronological system.
The spatial dimension of the term Trans-Caucasia (or South Caucasia) needsreconsideration after the fall of the Soviet system that functioned as a ‘iron curtain.’Natural boundaries are located between the Great Caucasian range in the north and theBlack and Caspian Seas towards the west and the east. The southern boundary isconfined by the flow of the Araxes River. The upper reaches of it form a boundarybetween Trans-Caucasia and Anatolia, going west from the same river along thePaland
ken and Kop ranges; and further to the north, the border runs along the middle