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Reply to J. D. Muhly, "Early Bronze Age Tin and the Taurus"

K. Aslihan Yener, Pamela B. Vandiver and Lynn Willies
American Journal of Archaeology
Vol. 97, No. 2 (Apr., 1993), pp. 255-264
DOI: 10.2307/505659
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/505659
Page Count: 10
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Reply to J. D. Muhly, "Early Bronze Age Tin and the Taurus"
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Abstract

This response to J. D. Muhly's essay (supra pp. 239-53) focuses on a series of key issues that have arisen concerning the chronology, technology, and archaeological context in which prehistoric metallurgy developed. Additional radiocarbon dates and information on EBA ceramics from soundings in the Kestel mine are presented, which are relevant to the dating of the operations. The tin-bronze industry at Tarsus and the question of "intentionality" in the manufacture of bronze alloys are further discussed. No data exist to support Muhly's contention that gold and iron were produced at Göltepe and Kestel. It is stressed that although particles of cassiterite and tin metal are small, they are dense and characteristically colored, and hence easily identified. Replication experiments in 1992 have suggested a method of producing tin metal compatible with the analyses of the crucibles and coatings. In an appendix, Lynn Willies discusses the geological nature of tin deposits in general and at Kestel in particular, and considers Muhly's interpretation of the deposits in the Eastern Desert.

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