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Latest advancements in the application of analytical science to ancient and historical glass production

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Chloe Duckworth



This is the of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by UISPP, 2019.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Major recent developments in the archaeometry of ancient and historical glass production are outlined, and examples of methods which are set to determine the future agenda of glass studies are presented. In the past twenty years there has been a step-change in the quantity and quality of archaeometric data for glass production, allowing researchers to address larger-scale questions. Quantitative chemical analyses, including trace element analysis, are increasingly being used to reconstruct not only provenance, but also production techniques, contamination, and recycling; isotope analysis is being used to challenge previous assumptions about provenance and develop approaches more rooted in geochemistry; and novel analytical techniques including ToF-SIMS and portable laser ablation have great future potential if applied to the correct questions. Finally, the use of handheld, portable-XRF is increasing the range of questions that can be asked in the field, from production site survey to sample selection, and the analysis of in situ glass windows.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Duckworth CN

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: UISPP Journal

Year: 2019

Volume: 2

Issue: 2

Pages: 99-110

Print publication date: 01/03/2019

Online publication date: 31/03/2019

Acceptance date: 21/03/2019

Date deposited: 21/03/2019

ISSN (electronic): 2612-2782

Publisher: UISPP