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Making and wearing semi-PRECIOUS stone beads in the Near East and the Nile Valley during the Neolithic: A biographical perspective and microwear approach

Descrizione del progetto

Scoprire le biografie delle perle archeologiche

Nel corso della storia, abiti e decorazioni sono stati indicatori della posizione sociale. Le persone si sono sempre adornate con simboli di status, quali gioielli e tatuaggi, che risalgono ad almeno 5 000 anni fa. In questo contesto, il progetto PRECIOUS, finanziato dall’UE, studierà la funzione simbolica delle perle di pietre semipreziose nel Vicino Oriente e nella Valle del Nilo durante la neolitizzazione e l’emergere di comunità agricole. Le perle ritrovate nelle sepolture saranno sottoposte ad analisi geochimiche e le biografie (tecniche di fabbricazione, riparazione o riciclaggio) saranno ricostruite sulla base di analisi microtopografiche e confronti con riferimenti etnografici e sperimentali. Il progetto promuoverà il poco studiato tema degli ornamenti preistorici.

Obiettivo

Beyond their symbolic functions, body ornaments offer crucial information to tackle the social organization of the past societies and to address their techno-cultural behaviours. In this sense, PRECIOUS is dedicated to the study of the first semi-precious stone beads in the Near East and the Nile Valley. The major aim is to understand the production and the consumption systems of these beads during the Neolithisation and the emergence of the farming communities (8th-4th mill. cal. BC). Beads discovered in burials from major Near Eastern and Nubian archaeological sites will be analysed through a microwear approach complemented by geochemical analyses. For the first time in the field of stone ornaments, high-precision surface texture analysis will be applied using the technique of the Confocal Scanning Microscopy (CSM) and metrology software. The “biographies” of the archaeological beads (manufacturing techniques, modalities of uses including accidents, repairing or recycling events) will be reconstructed through microtopographic analyses and comparisons with ethnographic and experimental references. A challenging experimental collection of references will be created as stone bead preforms will first document several drilling and finishing techniques, and then be subject to different scenarios of uses. The ethnographic material available are carnelian beads produced by traditional workshops in Yemen and India. To address the place of semi-precious stone beads within the Neolithic societies, the quality of production (levels of technicity) and maintenance will be assessed and statistically compared with well-defined chronocultural contexts and biological data available for the individuals wearing the ornaments (age, sex). The PRECIOUS project will greatly advance the research on prehistoric ornaments as it proposes the study of a little explored topic with a dedicated multi-approached methodology.

Meccanismo di finanziamento

MSCA-IF-EF-ST - Standard EF

Coordinatore

AGENCIA ESTATAL CONSEJO SUPERIOR DE INVESTIGACIONES CIENTIFICAS
Contribution nette de l'UE
€ 172 932,48
Indirizzo
CALLE SERRANO 117
28006 Madrid
Spagna

Mostra sulla mappa

Regione
Comunidad de Madrid Comunidad de Madrid Madrid
Tipo di attività
Research Organisations
Collegamenti
Costo totale
€ 172 932,48