Maritime trade in early Islamic-period glass: New evidence from the Maʻagan Mikhael B shipwreck

Eyal Natan, Yael Gorin-Rosen, Agnese Benzonelli, Deborah Cvikel

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The Maʻagan Mikhael B shipwreck is the remains of a 23-m-long merchantman found off the coast of Israel. A significant portion of the wooden hull survived in a good state of preservation, and over 870 glass fragments were found inside the hull remains. The finds included lumps of raw glass and fragments of glass vessels, which were probably intended for recycling. Fragments of bowls, cups, wine glasses, oil lamps, tesserae, bracelets, a glass vessel seal and two almost intact bottles, were also found. Except for a few finds dated to the Late Roman period, most of the glass vessels were dated to the end of the Byzantine and/or the Umayyad periods (7th–8th centuries CE). This is the first time that a glass cargo discovered in a shipwreck from the Early Islamic period has been studied in detail, using typological and analytical methods. The results indicate maritime trade between glass workshops in Israel and Egypt, and that glass cullet was also exported from Israel, although the destination of this cargo is as yet unknown.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102903
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science: Reports
StatePublished - Jun 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Ltd


  • Byzantine
  • Glass
  • Glass production
  • Late Roman
  • Maritime trade
  • Shipwreck
  • Umayyad

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Archaeology
  • Archaeology


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