Science News

The origin of the tin used in the Bronze Age has long been one of the greatest enigmas in archaeological research. Now researchers from Heidelberg University and the Curt Engelhorn Centre for Archaeometry in Mannheim have solved part of the puzzle. Using methods of the natural sciences, they examined the tin from the second millennium BCE found at archaeological sites in Israel, Turkey, and Greece. They were able to prove that this tin in the form of ingots does not come from Central Asia, as previously assumed, but from tin deposits in Europe. The findings are proof that even in the Bronze Age, complex and far-reaching trade routes must have existed between Europe and the Eastern Mediterranean. Highly appreciated raw materials like tin as well as amber, glass, and copper were the driving forces of this early international trade network.
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