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Title: An experimental approach for tracing olive processing residues in the archaeobotanical record, with preliminary examples from Tell Tweini, Syria
Authors: Marinova, Elena ×
van der Valk, Jan M. A.
Valamoti, Soultana Maria
Bretschneider, Joachim #
Issue Date: Sep-2011
Publisher: Springer-International
Series Title: Vegetation History & Archaeobotany vol:20 issue:5 pages:471-478
Abstract: To help the interpretation of possible olive
processing residues at archaeological sites, this study
examines the changes which occur in pre- and post-charring
breakage surfaces of olive stones at tissue level. Fresh
olives were experimentally broken before and after charring
and heated to different temperatures (230, 330, 430C) in
oxidising and non-oxidising conditions. The structures
obtained by the experiment were studied with scanning
electron microscopy (SEM) and the characteristics for the different temperatures, oxidation regimes and pre- or postcharring
fractures were recorded. Furthermore, the experimental
specimens were compared with recent and possibly
old fractures of several archaeological olive stones from
Tell Tweini, Syria. Criteria to infer their formation are
discussed. These criteria could be developed further through more experimental replication and additional
charring variables, and verified extensively on archaeobotanical
assemblages in future studies. The described structures
and alterations in the olive stones can be observed
using reflected light microscopy, which would allow the
proposed approach to be rather easy to apply in practice.
ISSN: 0939-6314
Publication status: published
KU Leuven publication type: IT
Appears in Collections:Laboratory for Animal Biodiversity and Systematics (-)
Near Eastern Studies, Leuven
× corresponding author
# (joint) last author

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