Digital Lunch Seminar Series: Mineralogy Meets Archaeology in Miletus
Wann: Mo, 12.06.2023, 12:00 Uhr bis 13:00 Uhr
Digital Lunch Seminar Series: Lecture 1/4
Mineralogy Meets Archaeology in Miletus
Stylianos Aspiotis and Christof Berns
Chair: Anastasia Poliakova
The analysis of rock-based written artefacts, the most secure and widespread medium for transmitting knowledge through time, should not solely be confined to the message of the engraved text but also expand on the mineral-phase composition of the carrier. Equally important information about peculiar characteristics of societies, such as the production processes of inscriptions, and the evolution of inscribed objects through time, in terms of local climate and pollutant factors that have affected them, can be obtained by studying colour remnants and weathering-related products on the surface of engravings. Since sampling is mostly prohibitive in Cultural Heritage, non-destructive and non-invasive analytical methods operating in reflection mode that are sensitive to both chemistry and structure are of great importance for the unambiguous characterization of mineral-based pigments and weathering-related products. Thus, on-field measurements on cultural-heritage objects with evident traces of colour and weathering marks from Miletus, one of the most prominent cities of the Mediterranean in Antiquity, were performed by the portable near-infrared (NIR) and diffuse reflectance infrared Fourier-transform (DRIFT) spectrometers of the mobile lab of CSMC with the assistance of Dr. Sebastian Bosch. Here we will discuss (i) whether the same pigments have been applied for the colouring of different objects of the daily life in Miletus, e.g. inscriptions concerning epigraphic stele, daily life ceramics, construction constituents, and frescoes, and (ii) how weathering processes affected these cultural-heritage objects in time.
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