A rapid method of screening ceramic artefacts to reject unlikely hypotheses of provenance

Filippo Saiano, Riccardo Scalenghe, Ottorino-Luca Pantani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

This study was aimed at testing a cost‐effective method based on comparing the rareearth element patterns in artefacts of known origin with patterns of potential rawmaterials, thus allowing the restriction/exclusion of working hypotheses onprovenance, and consequently a better focus of research funding. The methodtargets ceramics/materials of terrigenous origin. Lanthanoids and yttrium patternswere determined in 26 wine amphorae that had a well‐established geographical originfrom the Nuovo Mercato Testaccio in Rome, and these patterns were compared toplausible terrigenous materials from various ancient Roman regions. The point wasnot to pinpoint the origins of the material, but rather to rule out possible areas oforigin. On both a national and a regional scale, we were able to exclude some regionsof origin for these amphorae that would otherwise have been largely plausible. Thismethod does not require sampling from already known kiln/extraction sites.Moreover, if maps of all rare earth elements in soils become available on a regionalscale, it could be possible to obtain a level of discriminatory detail in the range of afew tens of kilometres.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)759-767
Number of pages9
JournalGEOARCHAEOLOGY
Volume34
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Fingerprint

ceramics
provenance
artifact
yttrium
wine
rare earth element
exclusion
funding
sampling
method
screening
material
Artifact
Screening
soil
Amphorae
Soil
Kiln
Testing
Sampling

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)

Cite this

A rapid method of screening ceramic artefacts to reject unlikely hypotheses of provenance. / Saiano, Filippo; Scalenghe, Riccardo; Pantani, Ottorino-Luca.

In: GEOARCHAEOLOGY, Vol. 34, 2019, p. 759-767.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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