The origin and spread of glass making: the isotopic evidence

Start: Feb 03, 2014 04:00 PM

Location: Room 612, Institute of Archaeology

The origin and spread of glass making: the isotopic evidence

Patrick Degryse (University of Leuven) will give the fourth seminar in the Term II Institute Research Seminar series on Isotopes in Archaeology on 3 February.


The history and technology of ancient glass has received much academic attention in the past two decades. Glass in archaeology has evolved from a small find in excavations, to objects which can help us understand the evolution of pyrotechnology, the development of man-made materials and the history of exchange, trade and economy in ancient society. The origins of glass as a material, and the provenance of the raw materials used in its making, are crucial aspects in this archaeological-anthropological research. By their very nature, vitreous materials are challenging in terms of characterization and provenance determination.

The use of geochemical techniques in archaeological science has enabled a new view on glass. This paper discusses elemental and isotope geochemistry, and in particular their combined use, to reconstruct exchange and trade patterns of raw glass, and to probe the origins and spread of glass as a material.

The seminar will take place at 4pm in Room 612 at the Institute and will be followed by a reception in the Staff Common Room (Room 609).

All welcome!

Any enquiries about the seminar series may be directed to Ian Freestone.

Institute Research Seminar Programme | Isotopes in Archaeology