Microbeam Analyses using EPMA, pXRF, LA-ICP-MS and FT-IR were conducted in this study of Late Bronze Age (LBA) White Slip II ware (WS-ware) imports at the Canaanite site Tel Esur (Tel Esur WS). The WS-ware is typically decorated with black-brown geometric patterns painted over a white slip layer. The study of the WS-ware provides useful information and a multi-analytical database regarding the composition, ceramic technology, raw materials, origin and cultural issues. The results demonstrate that the LBA potters select raw materials suitable for production of ceramics, slip and paint. The ceramic-body of the WS-ware was made of raw material that has been an appropriate selection to produce a hard and thin-walled vessel. For accentuating the black decoration over the dark reddish-grey ceramic-body, the latter was covered with white slip layer. The black decoration was made of ferromanganese-based pigment, which allows black decoration through firing of the vessels at an oxidizing atmosphere. The raw materials for the production of the ceramics, slip and paint were selected from Cypriot red basaltic clay of weathered basalt province, white hydrothermal clay of altered basalt zone and umber ore, respectively. The Tel Esur White Slip II ware is proved analytically to be imported from Cyprus.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
The study was carried out within the framework of Golan Shalvi's MA Thesis at the Department of Archaeology, University of Haifa. We carried out this study in the framework of a wider, comprehensive research of paint-decorated Bronze and Iron Age pottery in the eastern Mediterranean supported by the Israel Science Foundation (grant no. 209/14 , awarded to Ayelet Gilboa and Shlomo Shoval) and the Research Funds of the Open University of Israel (grants nos. 37179 and 31016 , awarded to Shlomo Shoval). We acknowledge these grants with gratitude. Part of this work was carried out while Shlomo Shoval was spending his sabbatical at the Institute of Earth Sciences at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem (HU). He expresses his appreciation for Oded Navon (HU) for his collaboration. The EPMA, pXRF and LA-ICP-MS analyses were conducted at the institute's facilities. The authors are grateful to Omri Dvir (HU) and Yael Levenson (HU) for operating the EPMA and the LA-ICP-MS laboratories and performing the analyses as well as for helpful discussions. We thank Yigal Erel (HU) for the permission to use the XRF apparatus. We are indebted to Costas Xenophontos (Cyprus Geological Survey, Department in Nicosia) for providing the umber ore. We thank Dana Harari of the Open University and Yaron Katzir of the Ben Gurion University for their help and the helpful discussions and to Judith Lempert for the effort that went into her editing. Lastly, we acknowledge the contribution of three anonymous readers to the clarity of the paper.
© 2018 Elsevier B.V.
- Black decoration
- Cypriot pottery
- EPMA, pXRF, LA-ICP-MS and FT-IR
- Manganese black technique
- Pigment analysis, Raw materials
- Umber ore
- White slip layer
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Geochemistry and Petrology