Laterite nodules: a credible source of iron ore in Iron Age Northeast Thailand?

Cawte, Hayden James, and Boyd, William E. (2010) Laterite nodules: a credible source of iron ore in Iron Age Northeast Thailand? Geoarchaeology, 25 (5). pp. 626-644.

[img] PDF (Published Version) - Published Version
Restricted to Repository staff only

View at Publisher Website: http://dx.doi.org/10.1002/gea.20326
 
6
6


Abstract

The advent of iron metallurgy changed the course of prehistoric Thailand. There is, however, little information on the nature of iron production and the extent to which locally abundant and easily quarried lateritic iron may have been the ore source. For northeast Thailand archaeological sites, the presence of both iron slag and laterite iron nodules within and surrounding these sites has widely been assumed to represent localized smelting using locally sourced iron ore. This interpretation is, however, based on untested laterite-equals-ore and slag-equals-smelting equations. This paper tests these assumptions by examining the chemistry of the lateritic iron nodules from two archaeological sites. At one site, the laterite is not a credible ore source and iron working probably comprised only smithing. Local laterite at the other site may be a usable ore. We conclude that, in northeast Thailand, the use of local laterite as an ore source cannot be assumed and that presence of both laterite and slag is not necessarily evidence for prehistoric smelting.

Item ID: 11721
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1520-6548
Funders: Evans Fund, University of Cambridge , Marie Curie EST funding, University College London, Asian Studies Research Bursary, University of Otago
Date Deposited: 10 Aug 2010 00:58
FoR Codes: 21 HISTORY AND ARCHAEOLOGY > 2101 Archaeology > 210103 Archaeology of Asia, Africa and the Americas @ 50%
09 ENGINEERING > 0914 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy > 091499 Resources Engineering and Extractive Metallurgy not elsewhere classified @ 15%
04 EARTH SCIENCES > 0406 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience > 040699 Physical Geography and Environmental Geoscience not elsewhere classified @ 35%
SEO Codes: 97 EXPANDING KNOWLEDGE > 970121 Expanding Knowledge in History and Archaeology @ 100%
Downloads: Total: 6
More Statistics

Actions (Repository Staff Only)

Item Control Page Item Control Page