spondylus | sharing archaeological resources for spondylus sp.


Aszod – Papi-foldek Spondylus Stable isotope study by fotisif
June 4, 2012, 6:32 am
Filed under: Spondylus studies

Aszód – Papi-földek késő neolitikus lelőhelyen feltárt kagylóékszerek származási helyének meghatározása stabilizotóp-geokémiai módszerrel [Stable isotope geochemical provenance study of shell ornaments from Aszód – Papi-földek] by Kalicz N. et al. Published in Környezet – Ember – Kultúra: A természettudományok és a régészet párbeszéde [Environment – Human – Culture: Dialogue between applied sciences and archaeology] (ed. A. Kreiter Attila, Á. Peto &  B. Tugya): 317-326. Budapest: Hungarian National Museum Centre for National Cultural Heritage (2012).

Abstract: Determination of the provenance of Spondylus objects is essential for the interpretation of Late Neolithic exchange systems and the social role of shell ornaments. Stable isotope analysis was performed on ornaments (beads, bracelets) excavated at Aszod – Papi-foldek archaeological site to defi ne the source of Spondylus shells. For comparison Spondylus artefacts from Neolithic sites of Greece, modern shells from the Aegean and the Adriatic Seas, as well as fossil Spondylus and Ostrea shells from the Carpathian Basin were analysed. Oxygen isotope composition of Spondylus artefacts from Aszod ranges between -1.9 and 2.1‰ and overlaps with the isotope range of artefacts from other Neolithic sites. Modern shells both from the Aegean and the Adriatic Seas show overlapping _18O values with the Neolithic objects, therefore the Spondylus shells at Aszod can have Aegean or Adriatic origin. Based on earlier strontium isotope analysis the use of fossil Spondylus shells was excluded, however, the notion of fossil shell use has recently been emerged again. The artefacts from Aszod and the fossil oyster shells exhibit overlapping oxygen isotope values, however, the Spondylus objects retained their original aragonite material and no diagenetic calcite was detected suggesting that the studied ornaments were made of recent shells. Crystalline aragonite stripes and calcitic parts observed in the artefacts are not related to fossilisation. Considerable number of limestone beads was found among Spondylus ornaments; according to stable isotope analysis they were made of non-marine limestone probably of local origin.

The entire volume (in Hungarian) is available here.


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