The origin and distribution of obsidian in prehistoric Bohemia

Произход и разпространение на обсидиан в праисторическа Бохемия

  • Pavel Burgert Institute of Archaeology of the Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague, Letenská 4, 118 01
  • Antonín Přichystal Department of Geological Sciences, Masaryk University, Faculty of Science, Brno, Kotlářská 267/2, 611 37
  • Lubomír Prokeš Department of Geological Sciences, Masaryk University, Faculty of Science, Brno, Kotlářská 267/2, 611 37
  • Jan Petřík Department of Geological Sciences, Masaryk University, Faculty of Science, Brno, Kotlářská 267/2, 611 37
  • Simona Hušková Department of Chemistry, Masaryk University, Faculty of Science, Brno, Kotlářská 267/2, 611 37
Keywords: geochemistry, Neolithic, Obsidian, outcrops, Palaeolithic, raw material distribution

Abstract

This paper summarizes current knowledge of the distribution of obsidian in prehistoric Bohemia (Czech Republic). In terms of this raw material’s distribution, Bohemia is a peripheral area, and it is also the westernmost part of its regular archaeological occurrence. Because of its rarity within the specified area, it is possible to identify this material quite easily even in earlier archaeological literature, and together with new discoveries, to create a coherent picture of its distribution. So far, only two locations in Bohemia have been described where the processing of raw obsidian material is documented. Both these sites are located in the eastern part of the study area; in terms of location these are the closest sites to the anticipated sources. The sites are dated to a later stage of the Stroked Pottery culture. Because no such processing sites are known from other periods, we believe it was mainly the distribution of entire blanks and pre-prepared cores that took place at that time.

Furthermore, our study discusses the original sources of obsidian in terms of the region that is being monitored. In accordance with the aims of our investigation, the selected obsidian artefacts were subjected to geochemical analysis to identify their origins. The peak of the distribution is the period of the Stroked Pottery culture (4900–4500/4400 cal BC). The basic outcome of the geochemical analysis is the identification of at least two sources of raw material in the Carpathian source area.

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Published
2017-06-26
How to Cite
Burgert, P., Přichystal, A., Prokeš, L., Petřík, J. and Hušková, S. (2017) “The origin and distribution of obsidian in prehistoric Bohemia”, Bulgarian e-Journal of Archaeology / Българско е-Списание за Археология, 7(1), pp. 1-15. Available at: http://be-ja.org/index.php/Be-JA/article/view/3 (Accessed: 25March2019).
Section
Papers / Статии
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