Ancient Americans show metallic flair.
Scientists working at an ancient ceremonial center in Peru can be forgiven if they break into a chant of "Hallelujah Hallelujah (hăl'əl`yə) or Alleluia (ăl–) [Heb.,=praise the Lord], joyful expression used in Hebrew worship; cf. Pss. , foiled again." Copper and gold foil unearthed Unearthed is the name of a Triple J project to find and "dig up" (hence the name) hidden talent in regional Australia.
Unearthed has had three incarnations - they first visited each region of Australia where Triple J had a transmitter - 41 regions in all. there dates to about 3,000 years ago, offering the oldest known evidence of metalworking in the New World.
Metallurgy in this region arose in what is believed to have been a relatively small society without strict social classes, assert archaeologist Richard L. Burger and geologist Robert B. Gordon Robert Bryarly Gordon (August 6, 1855 - January 3, 1923) was a U.S. Representative from Ohio.
Born at St. Marys, Auglaize County, Ohio, Gordon attended the public schools.Postmaster of St. Marys 1885-1889.Auditor of Auglaize County 1890-1896. , both of Yale University Yale University, at New Haven, Conn.; coeducational. Chartered as a collegiate school for men in 1701 largely as a result of the efforts of James Pierpont, it opened at Killingworth (now Clinton) in 1702, moved (1707) to Saybrook (now Old Saybrook), and in 1716 was . Traditional theories hold that large states characterized by stark social divisions held a monopoly on technological innovations such as metallurgy.
Burger and Gordon present their findings in the Nov. 6 Science.
"This is an extremely important paper," comments archaeologist Daniel Sandweiss of the University of Maine "UMO" redirects here, but this abbreviation is also used informally to mean the Mozilla Add-ons website, formerly Mozilla Update
Should not be confused with Université du Maine, in Le Mans, France
The University of Maine in Orono. "It finally gives us a clear indication that metallurgy was invented independently [in the New World] and developed in ways that were similar to its beginnings elsewhere."
The Yale researchers directed excavations at Mina Perdida, located on a large, natural terrace above a coastal valley. A flat-topped, terraced pyramid dominates the site. Digging focused on two long, raised mounds arranged in a U shape and framing a ceremonial plaza.
Mina Perdida and nearby sites have already yielded remains of religious rituals and other community activities, and of households situated on their fringes. These locations were abandoned before the rise of Peruvian cultures that produced smelted copper objects by around 2,000 years ago.
Radiocarbon dating radiocarbon dating
The determination of the approximate age of an ancient object, such as an archaeological specimen, by measuring the amount of carbon 14 it contains. Also called carbon dating, carbon-14 dating. of artifacts artifacts
see specimen artifacts. found in the same sediment as the copper and gold-foil fragments yields an age of between approximately 3,120 and 3,020 years, Burger and Gordon report.
Metalworkers at Mina Perdida understood copper's natural properties and how to manipulate the metal in sophisticated ways, Burger holds. Microscopic analysis of foil specimens indicates that they were expertly hammered into thin foils. In some cases, a heating process was used as part of foil production. Three copper foils have folded corners and edges. Fragments of gold attached to two copper foils indicate that Mina Perdida artisans made gilded gild 1
tr.v. gild·ed or gilt , gild·ing, gilds
1. To cover with or as if with a thin layer of gold.
2. To give an often deceptively attractive or improved appearance to.
Foils may have been attached to ceremonial attire or objects in order to reflect light during ritual performances, Burger suggests. Ancient onlookers probably marveled at the capture and redirection of a natural force as significant as the sun, he says.