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Bronze Age Metalworking in the Netherlands (Paperback)

Ancient History > Prehistory > Bronze Age

Imprint: Sidestone Press
Pages: 171
ISBN: 9789088900150
Published: 1st December 2008
Casemate UK Academic

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Almost fifty years ago J. J. Butler started his research to trace the possible remains of a Bronze Age metalworker's workshop in the Netherlands. Yet, while metalworking has been deduced on the ground of the existence of regional types of axes and some scarce finds related to metalworking, the smith's workplace has remained elusive. In this Research Master Thesis I have tried to tackle this problem. I have considered both the social as well as the technological aspects of metalworking to be able to determine conclusively whether metalworking took place in the Netherlands or not. The first part of the thesis revolves around the social position of the smith and the social organization of metalworking. My approach entails a re-evaluation of the current theories on metalworking, which I believe to be unfounded and one-sided. They tend to disregard production of everyday objects of which the most prominent example is the axe. The second part deals with the technological aspects of metalworking and how these processes are manifested in the archaeological record. Based on evidence from archaeological sites elsewhere in Europe and with the aid of experimental archaeology a metalworking toolkit is constructed. Finally, a method is presented which might help archaeologists recognize the workplace of a Bronze Age smith.

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