Iron Age ceramics suggest complex pattern of Eastern Mediterranean trade
Cypriot-style pottery may have been locally produced as well as imported and traded in Turkey during the Iron Age, according to a study published November 30, 2016 in the open-access journal Plos One by Steven Karacic from Florida State University, USA, and James Osborne of the University of Chicago, USA.
|An ancient ceramic jug from Cyprus, on display at the National Archaeological Museum |
of Perugia in Italy [Credit: DeAgostini/Getty Images]
The authors of the present study analyzed White Painted and Bichrome Wares recovered from three sites in the Hatay region of Turkey: Tell Tayinat, Çatal Höyük, and Tell Judaidah, using techniques which bombarded the pottery with x-rays and neutrons, providing insight into the chemical elements they contained. Imported and local versions of this pottery had different elemental compositions, which helped the authors determine where this pottery was produced. When compared with existing datasets, the researchers found that Çatal Höyük and Tell Judaidah may only have had access to pottery imported from Cyprus whereas Tell Tayinat may have made Cypriot-style pottery locally as well as importing it.
"We were surprised to find that locally produced Cypriot-style pottery was consumed at Tell Tayinat but not the other sites included in our study," says Karacic. "These results indicate complex social and economic interactions between the Amuq and Cyprus that we are only just beginning to understand for the Iron Age."
Source: Public Library of Science [November 30, 2016]