Proto-Tarascan Uacusecha Metallurgy: Issues about tecnological transition and lost techniques


Within the large and rich vein of archaeological studies on Western Mesoamerican metallurgy (ca. 800-1500 a.C.), a large body of literature is devoted to the metal production of the Tarasco Kingdom (1420-1522 a.C.), since by 1450 a.C. this became the most important centre of Pre-Columbian metalworking. Indeed many scientific studies have focused on the material and the technological aspects of Tarascan metal artefacts, particularly of copper and copper alloy bells. In comparison, little in known about Uacusecha metalwork-- identified as the predecessor of the Tarascan--, an approach that offers to provide knowledge on a key and yet poorly documented phase of middle Western Post-Classic Metallurgy. This paper follows recent advances in Uacusecha metallurgy by presenting further results of an interdisciplinary scientific research based on the use of diverse analytical techniques (OM, XRD; SEM-EDXRF) on a small metal collection recently discovered in Malpaís Prieto Archaeological Site, near Zacapu, Michoacan, México. As a result, this paper presents a groundbreaking pilot study that discusses issues about technological transitions and lost techniques of Western metallurgy, which included the production of copper, copper alloys and silver artefacts.

Cite this Record

Proto-Tarascan Uacusecha Metallurgy: Issues about tecnological transition and lost techniques. Isabel Medina-González, Manuel Espinosa-Pesqueira, Gregory Pereira. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430120)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15205