7th Experimental Archaeology Conference Poster Abstract – Lackinger and Comendador

Poster presentation:

From Wax to Metal: An experimental Approach to the Chaîne Opératoire of the Bronze Disk from Urdiñeira

Aaron Lackinger and  Beatriz Comendador

GEAAT, Universidade de Vigo

A PDF of this poster, copyright of the authors, is available to download.

The so-called “Treasure of A Urdiñeira” (A Gudiña, SE of the province of Ourense, Spain) consists of an assemblage of three metal artefacts: two gold bracelets and a bronze button or disk, dated from the transition between the Late Bronze Age and the Early Iron Age. This hoard found by chance around 1921, combines sumptuary objects made of gold and bronze, which are not usually found together in the context of the Iberian Peninsula (Comendador & Lackinger 2012).

From a morphological and technical point of view, the gold objects were well studied by B. Armbruster (2000), who indicates that the closed bracelet was made by a lost-wax process and with the use of a lathe, and includes them in the Villena/Estremoz technological domain system, from the Late European Bronze Age. Despite its singularity, the bronze object has received less attention than the gold objects, except from the typological point of view.

Based on direct observation and the analyses made on the archaeological material (SEM), we can establish a hypothesis about its manufacture and we propose an experimental approach to the chaîne opératoire of the disk from Urdiñeira. Our proposal revalues the NW Iberian Peninsula artisans’ community knowledge, as it suggests an experimental recreation of the chaîne opératoire with recourse to certain technical uses by these artisans. We aim to test coherent experimental processes and formulate precise questions related to prehistoric technologies.

Armbruster, B.R. (2000):  Goldschmiedekunst und Bronzetechnik: Studien zum Metallhandwerk der atlantischen Bronzezeit auf der iberischen Halbinsel, Montagnac. Monique Mergoil.

Comendador, B. & Lackinger, A. (2012): The bronze disk of “A Urdiñeira” hoard (A Gudiña, Ourense, Spain). Conservação e técnicas de análise para o estudo e salvaguarda do património metálico AUCORRE, Lisboa (29-30 Março 2011):


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