Non-ferrous casting molds and technical logic: What can the technical differences between the Bronze Age and Iron Age molds tell us about the technological development of metalworking?
Author(s): Daniel Sahlen
Studies of technological changes in non-ferrous casting during the shift between the Bronze and the Iron Age in Europe have particularly looked at changes of crucible manufacture or the use of different alloys, while technology of the casting mold has not been studied to the same extent.
Mainly three types of molds were used during the prehistoric period – single piece, two-piece, and investment. The first two types were made in clay, stone and occasionally metal, while investment molds were only made from clay. These differences are often discussed as a chronological evolution of technical complexity. However, all three types were used at least during the Iron Age and would have been part of the skill set of the caster; the choice of mold would rather relate to the object to be cast.
The purpose of this presentation is to use microscopic and elemental analyses to examine the technological changes of the manufacture of casting molds from the Bronze Age to the Iron Age. This makes it possible to highlight technological choices and to recreate craft practice on macro- and micro-levels. Material from Scotland will be in focus, though assemblages from other parts of northern Europe will also be discussed.
SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit http://www.tdar.org/SAA2015 for instructions and more information.
This Resource is Part of the Following Collections
- Micro-worlds, materiality and human behaviour: Magnifying material science in explanations of technology •
- Society for American Archaeology 80th Annual Meeting, San Francisco, CA (2015)
Cite this Record
Non-ferrous casting molds and technical logic: What can the technical differences between the Bronze Age and Iron Age molds tell us about the technological development of metalworking?. Daniel Sahlen. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 396498)
min long: -11.074; min lat: 37.44 ; max long: 50.098; max lat: 70.845 ;