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Artefact of the Day 14/7

July 15, 2015

IMG_4920If the artefact of yesterday was a bit mundane – the artefact of today is nothing short of mind-blowing. It is (or they are as the case may be) a set of amber beads – found by Jonathan in situ! 20 beads were found together in a loop – the way they were probably threaded on a sting, maybe for a earring as another six beads were found together (also by Jonathan) close to were the full loop were resting. We are now going to fine screen the dirt from around the beads to see if we can find the missing 13 (Renee also found one bead) to get a full pair of earrings. Amber was a rear and highly prestigious material in this part of the world. The amber sources closest to Nunalleq would be Chirikof Island southwest of Kodiak or Unalaska. Not only was amber a very valuable material. the find also demonstrate the developed long distance trade and contact networks that operated in pre-contact coastal Alaska. However, amber is rare also at the site – before this amazing find we have only found one amber bead at Nunalleq.


4 Comments leave one →
  1. Marjorie permalink
    July 15, 2015 11:21

    Will you be able to tell where the amber came from?

    • July 16, 2015 06:02

      Amber can be analysed to see which species of tree the resin that formed into amber came from, which make it possible to place its origin in different geographical areas of the world, but it wouldn’t be possible to differentiate between different locales among the same species. We will not be doing any analysis of ‘our’ amber, so we will have keep guessing 🙂

  2. Vanalander permalink
    November 29, 2015 09:52

    Reblogged this on Vanaland and commented:
    Is it a viking artefact?

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