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Roman amber identified as Siegburgite


Dietz, C and Catanzariti, G and Quintero, S and Jimeno, A, Roman amber identified as Siegburgite, Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 6, (1) pp. 63-72. ISSN 1866-9557 (2014) [Refereed Article]

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Copyright 2013 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg

DOI: doi:10.1007/s12520-013-0129-4


A small amber fragment from the period of roman occupation of Numantia (Garray, Spain) was characterised by FTIR spectroscopy and optical microscopy. The material was found to be a polystyrene-like material, which is a very rare fossil resin known as Siegburgite or class III amber. Until now, this material was found in Europe only at two sites, both localised in Germany and it is the first time that similar archaeological amber was identified. The discussion includes the applicability of the method to distinguish false from true and amber of different origin, itís use and trading as well as a hypothesis for a transport route. The study highlights the need for a more systematic study of archaeological amber remains. The finding also proves the exploitation and trading of local, non-Baltic amber deposits throughout the Roman Empire.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:amber, siegburgite, Roman amber trading
Research Division:Chemical Sciences
Research Group:Analytical chemistry
Research Field:Analytical chemistry not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in history, heritage and archaeology
UTAS Author:Dietz, C (Dr Christian Dietz)
ID Code:84873
Year Published:2014
Web of Science® Times Cited:3
Deposited By:Central Science Laboratory
Deposited On:2013-06-04
Last Modified:2017-11-03

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