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Analytical Archaeometry: Selected Topics Hardcover – November 29, 2012

ISBN-13: 978-1849731621 ISBN-10: 1849731624 Edition: 1st

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Editorial Reviews

Review

Book’s topic This book outlines the principles and applications of the most important analytical techniques in use for analysing artworks and archaeological objects, and discusses the materials encountered in this field.Description of the analytical techniques includes fundamental theoretical backgrounds, but the main focus is on how to apply those techniques and the information that can be obtained by use of archaeometry. The book’s 20 chapters are divided into three parts. Part one covers the most commonly used analytical techniques; part two deals with composition, analytical methods, and degradation of materials; and part three discusses some emerging archaeometric themes. The book gives good guidelines on how to select the most appropriate techniques, and covers non-destructive and micro-destructive techniques Contents Chapters 1–7 cover the imaging techniques that are the basis of common non-destructive scientific visualisation: vibrational spectroscopy; X-ray methods, including instrumentation and archaeometry applications; radiocarbon dating; separation techniques, mostly interfaced with mass spectrometry to identify organic substances; mass spectrometry, focusing on element identification and isotope determination; and electrochemical techniques (useful to obtain information about composition and origin). Chapters 8–17 describe the composition and ageing behaviour of several materials encountered in art and archaeology. Pottery, glass, and obsidian artefacts are critically reviewed, covering the most recent literature. Advanced instrumental techniques used to characterise enamelled metalwork and gemstones (not commonly discussed in the literature) reveal new possibilities for investigating these materials. A survey of pigments and dyes in history emphasizes the importance of colours and the complexity of their chemical composition. The chapter on the structures and materials of panel and canvas paintings summarises how to characterise both artists’ materials and those used for restoration. Chapter 14 provides information enabling better understanding of the rates and mechanisms of corrosion of ferrous metals under different environmental conditions. Resin and fossil resins are briefly discussed in Chapter 15, and innovative analytical procedures for identifying archaeological ivory are detailed. Historical textiles are taken into account, but only in description of a case study (a 17th-century bodice). Chapters 18 and 19 report recent developments in the authentication of art and archaeological objects and of gemstones, and give insights into the production of the decorative tiles used in Iranian architecture. The closing chapter deals with an intriguing topic related to chemical Comparison with the existing literature The book focuses on the theory and practice of state-of-the-art analytical identification of underwater remains.techniques and on characterisation of the materials of artworks and archaeological objects. A few topics, e.g. authentication and identification of gemstones, have some coverage in the few books available on archaeometry—- Archaeological Chemistry by A.M. Pollard and C. Heron (RSC Publishing 2008) or Analytical Techniques in Material Conservation by B. Stuart (Wiley 2007). Although not exhaustive, most of the arguments are thoroughly discussed and well-documented. Critical assessment The book covers conceptual and technological developments of, approximately, the last ten years in the ever-expanding field of archaeometry. It discusses new developments in the field and clarifies the use of nondestructive and micro-destructive diagnostic techniques. The chapters on different applications, contributed by known experts in each field, are a valuable resource for any archaeometry researcher unfamiliar with the techniques described. Thismulti-authored book is also recommended to students studying for masters in chemical science and conservation science. Summary Analytical Archaeometry covers the most common analytical techniques and procedures applied to art and archaeological objects, clearly presenting their advantages and disadvantages. The book provides an overview of the analytical techniques that are available to those with an interest in archaeometry and conservation sciences. (Maria Perla Colombini Anal Bioanal Chem (2013) 405:5635–5636 DOI 10.1007/s00216-013-7008-9)

The book gives good guidelines on how to select the.most.appropriate techniques, and covers non-destructive and micro-destructive techniques The chapters on different applications, contributed by known experts in eaCh field, are a valuable resource for an archaeometry researcher unfamiliar -with the techniques described. This multi-authored book is also recommended to students studying for masters in chemical science and conservation science. Analytical Archaeometry covers the most common analytical techniques and procedures applied to art and archaeological objects. clearly presenting their advantages and disadvantages. (Maria Perla Colombini Anal Bioanal Chern (2013) 405:5635--5636 DOl 10.1007/s00216-013-7008-9)

Book Description

The book describes this interesting and challenging field of research - on the border between natural sciences (chemistry, spectroscopy, biology, geology) and humanities (archaeology, (art-)history, conservation sciences). It fills the gap between these two areas whilst focussing on the analytical aspects of this research field. The first part of the book studies the main analytical techniques used in this research field. The second part expands from the different types of materials usually encountered, and the final part is organised around a series of typical research questions. The book is not only focussed on archaeological materials, but is also accessible to a broader lay audience. It is aimed at academics as well as professionals in archaeology, art history, museum labs and conservation science.

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