In Europe, birch bark tar is considered as a universal adhesive during prehistory but archaeological data is scarce and scattered. Assessing the role of adhesive substances in prehistoric technology requires cross-institutional training and access to samples from different archaeological contexts and environments. You will undertake chemical characterisation of adhesive samples from composite objects (hafted tools) and the measurement of mechanical properties of experimentally-produced adhesive products to understand the methods of production, choices and management of natural substances used for several purposes (hafting materials, repair or waterproofing ceramic vessels or other objects, etc.). A key aspect of the project is to establish the availability of raw materials involved in adhesive materials (birch, pine etc) and to identify whether other materials such as beeswax, ochre, charcoal etc were used as additives to improve binding properties.
PhD starting October 2021 and recruiting now.
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