"The GLASS Project builds upon excavations at Tell Basta/Bubastis (Egypt) where a large amount of Late Antique glass (appr. 2500 fragments so far, mainly 2nd – 7th cent. AD) has been excavated. Using this glass corpus as a case study, GLASS seeks to address the lack of research about Late Antique to Early Islamic glass from Egypt and its trade by combining archaeological, chemical, and historical methods.
Five key research questions (=Milestones) – namely 1. glass supply and consumption in Bubastis 2. trade patterns 3. recycling issues 4. the status of glass objects and 5. glass imitation – will be addressed and result in databases, catalogues and articles (Deliverables 1-4). The project will be based at the UCL Institute of Archaeology and include chemical analyses of glass from Bubastis on site with a portable XRF, and of contemporary and provenanced glass from relevant UK collections by electron microprobe and LA-ICPMS.
Based on my good understanding of artefact typology, archaeological context and analytical methods, I will combine chemical analysis and typo-chronological studies on the basis of archaeological excavations in order to gain new knowledge about Egyptian glass production, working, distribution, usage and trade in the Late Antique world. I will integrate these results into a larger discussion and draw conclusions concerning various economic, cultural, social and historical aspects of Egypt's glass use and consumption in the context of the Mediterranean glass trade throughout the Late Antique and Early Islamic periods. The project will thus pioneer broader directions of inquiry and new, interdisciplinary approaches to the investigation of past cultures."
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