Beirut and Tell el-Burak: Analyses of Iron Age Metal Objects

Sub-Project (Funded by the DPV) within the German-Lebanese „Tell el-Burak Project“

Aaron Schmitt (Mainz)

Objects used for fishing from Tell el-Burak

Objects used for fishing from Tell el-Burak

The Iron Age metal finds from Beirut and Tell el-Burak are part of the material culture related to everyday life in Phoenicia. The project was undertaken by Aaron Schmitt (Johannes Gutenberg-Universität Mainz). It included the systematic documentation, restauration and publication of all metal objects which were found until 2008 by the German-Lebanese excavation projects at Beirut and Tell el-Burak. Simone A. Korolnik-Jablonka, Magali Stoller, and Nicole Ebinger-Rist were responsible for the restoration of the objects. Furthermore, chemical investigations of 50 selected objects from both sites were funded by the Deutscher Palästina-Verein. The samples were analyzed by the Curt-Engelhorn-Zentrum Archäometrie in Mannheim under the direction of Ernst Pernicka.

The metal objects of both sites include fragments of weapons, tools, and jewelry. Among the tools, the fishing equipment stands out (fish hooks, fishnet sinkers, tools for fishnet mending). The chemical analysis is the first of this kind on Iron Age metal objects from Phoenicia. The results show which metal alloys were used for the various groups of objects. They demonstrate for instance that the so-called Persian arrowheads consist of lead bronze, and include a very high percentage of lead.

Further Information
A. Schmitt: Die eisenzeitlichen Metallfunde aus Tell el-Burak und Beirut (BEY 020), in: ZDPV 129/2 (2013), 171 – 216.

Further projects funded by the Society

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