On both sides of the body they inserted spears into the earth and, over them they placed a kind of baldachin of reed.
In the same grave they put one of the king’s concubines, who received special honours before being sacrificed.
The same fate was destined for the king’s waiter, cook, groom and messenger.
, gold was the monopoly of rulers, and the rich and large in size Scythian tumuli surpass what is known in many other parts of the world, although Lydian, Thracian and Phrygian tumuli are also large in size and extremely rich.Herodotusdescribes in detail the funeral rituals followed to honour the Scythian rulers.The intestines of the ruler's body were removed, the interior was filled with aromatic spices and the corpse was embalmed.The body was then transported by wagon to all the tribes which were under the dead ruler's supremacy, and a funeral feast was organized in all these places.The leaders related to the deceased and other high-ranking individuals cut their hair as a sign of their grief; sometimes they even cut their ears and fingers too.
They also inflicted wounds to their arms, nose and stern or they drilled a hole in their left palm with an arrow.Then the leaders and the deceased ruler's guard followed the cortege to the Gerros land.There the excavated a deep pit and laid the body in it on a mat.One year later the Scythians would kill 50 men from the deceased person's cavalry along with their horses, embalm their bodies similarly to that of the king and affix them to high poles mounted on their horses surrounding the grave.While Herodotus’ description can roughly be compared with the archaeological picture of the richest graves, thislast element only finds parallels in the horse burials around some graves, like at Kostromskaja.New excavations have shown that around most of the royal graves a ditch was excavated, both to mark the tumulus in a more apparent way and to use the earth for the construction of the tumulus itself.