Skip to content
BY 4.0 license Open Access Published by De Gruyter Open Access June 27, 2020

Chemical Characterization of Vitreous Finds from Cosenza Cathedral (Calabria – Italy) by the Combined Use of Analytical Techniques

Donatella Barca and Franca C. Papparella
From the journal Open Archaeology

Abstract

This article presents an archaeometrical research carried out on twenty-six vitreous finds collected in the Cosenza Cathedral (Calabria, Italy). The glasses have been subdivided in two typo-chronological groups. The first group is composed of 14 vitreous samples dating to the 4th–6th century AD. The second group includes twelve samples; seven are stems of funnel-shaped hanging lamps which date between the 12th and the 13th century AD, two are bottlenecks of balsamaria and three are concave bases. The aims of this study were the determination of the chemical composition of vitreous finds and the individuation of the primary glass sources. The samples were characterized through Electron Probe Micro Analyser with Wavelength Dispersive Spectrometer (EPMA-WDS) and Laser Ablation with Inductively Coupled Plasma Mass Spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS). The data confirm that all the finds of the first group are “silica-soda-lime” type glasses characterized by a high content of Na2O and a low content of K2O and MgO. On the contrary, the samples of the second group, showing higher contents of K2O and MgO, are vegetable silica-soda-lime glasses. Their composition confirms the typological attribution to the medieval period.

References

Aisa, M. G., & Corrado, M. (2003). Vetri altomedievali dalla basilica di Botricello (Catanzaro). In A. Coscarella (Ed.), Il vetro in Calabria. Contributo per una carta di distribuzione in Italia (pp. 337–400). Soveria Mannelli.Search in Google Scholar

Aisa, M. G., & Papparella, F. (2003). Il materiale vitreo del cimitero del cimitero alto-medievale di Cropani (CZ), località Basilicata. In A. Coscarella (Ed.), Il vetro in Calabria. Contributo per una carta di distribuzione in Italia (pp. 317–324). Soveria Mannelli.Search in Google Scholar

Angelini, L., Gratuze, B., & Artioli, G. (2019). Glasses through history. In G. Artioli & R. Oberti (Eds.), EMU-20: The Contribution of Mineralogy to Cultural Heritage (pp. 87–150). European Mineralogical Union and the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland.Search in Google Scholar

Barbera, G., Barone, G., Crupi, V., Longo, F., Majolino, D., Mazzoleni, P., & Venuti, V. (2012). Study of Late Roman and Byzantine glass by the combined use of analytical techniques. Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, 358(12-13), 1554–1561. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2012.04.01310.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2012.04.013Search in Google Scholar

Barca, D., De Francesco, A. M., Crisci, G. M., & Tozzi, C. (2008). Provenance of obsidian artifacts from site of Colle Cera, Italy, by LA-ICP-MS method. Periodico di Mineralogia, 77, 41–52.Search in Google Scholar

Barca, D., Abate, M., Crisci, G.M. & De Presbiteris, D. (2009). Post-Medieval glass from the castle of Cosenza, Italy: Chemical characterization by LA-ICP-MS and SEM-EDS. Periodico di Mineralogia, 78(2) 49–64. https://doi.org/10.2451/2009PM0008Search in Google Scholar

Barca, D., Basso, E., Bersani, D., Galli, G., Invernizzi, C., La Russa, M. F., . . . Ruffolo, S. A. (2016). Vitreous tesserae from the calidarium mosaics of the Villa deiQuintili, Rome.Chemical composition and production technology. Microchemical Journal, 124, 726–735. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.microc.2015.10.03710.1016/j.microc.2015.10.037Search in Google Scholar

Barca, D., Fiorenza, E., D’Andrea, M., Le Pera, E., Musella, M., Sudano, F., Taliano Grasso, A. (2019). Chemical and Petrographic Characterization of Stone and Glass Tesserae in the Nereid and Geometric Mosaics from the S. Aloe Quarter in Vibo Valentia–Calabria, Italy. Minerals, 9(12), 729. https://doi.org/10.3390/min912072910.3390/min9120729Search in Google Scholar

Barca, D., Lucarini, G., & Fedele, F. (2012). The provenance of obsidian artefacts from the WāDī ATH- THAYYILAH 3 Neolithic site (eastern Yemen plateau) by LA-ICP-MS. Archaeometry, 54(4), 603–622. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2011.00643.x10.1111/j.1475-4754.2011.00643.xSearch in Google Scholar

Barca, D., Pecci, A., Barba, L., Crisci, G. M., De Luca, R., Marabini, S., . . . Miriello, D. (2019). Geochemical and petrographic characterization of pyroclastic deposits of Los Humeros Volcanic Complex used as aggregates in the plasters from Teotihuacan (Mexico). Microchemical Journal, 145, 852–863. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.microc.2018.11.04910.1016/j.microc.2018.11.049Search in Google Scholar

Basso, E., Invernizzi, C., Malagodi, M., La Russa, M. F., Bersani, D., & Lottici, P. P. (2014). Characterization of colorants and opacifiers in roman glass mosaic tesserae through spectroscopic and spectrometric techniques. Journal of Raman Spectroscopy, 45(3), 238–245. https://doi.org/10.1002/jrs.444910.1002/jrs.4449Search in Google Scholar

Brems, D., Freestone, I. C., Gorin-Rosen, Y., Scott, R., Devulder, V., Vanhaecke, F., &Degryse, P. (2018). Characterisation of Byzantine and early Islamic primary tank furnace glass. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 20, 722–735. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2018.06.01410.1016/j.jasrep.2018.06.014Search in Google Scholar

Ceglia, A., Cosyns, P., Nys, K., Terryn, H., Thienpont, H., & Meulebroeck, W. (2015). Late antique glass distribution and consumption in Cyprus: A chemical study. Journal of Archaeological Science, 61, 213–222. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2015.06.00910.1016/j.jas.2015.06.009Search in Google Scholar

Ceglia, A., Cosyns, P., Schibille, N., & Meulebroeck, W. (2019). Unravelling Provenance and Recycling of Late Antique Glass from Cyprus with Trace Elements. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 11(1), 279–291. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-017-0542-110.1007/s12520-017-0542-1Search in Google Scholar

Coscarella, A. (2003). Testimonianze vitree dal castrumdi San Niceto. In A. Coscarella (Ed.), Il vetro in Calabria. Contributo per una carta di distribuzione in Italia (pp. 151–159). Soveria Mannelli.Search in Google Scholar

Costamagna, L. (1991). La sinagoga di Bova Marina nel quadro degli insediamenti tardoantichi della costa Ionica meridionale della Calabria. Mélanges de l’école française de Rome, 103(2), 611–630.10.3406/mefr.1991.3190Search in Google Scholar

De Juan Ares, J., & Fernández Calderón, N., Muñiz López, I., García Álvarez-Busto, A., & Schibille, N. (2018). Islamic soda-ash glasses in the Christian kingdoms of Asturias and León (Spain). Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 22, 257–263. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2018.09.02610.1016/j.jasrep.2018.09.026Search in Google Scholar

De Juan Ares, J., Schibille, N., Molina Vidal, J., & Sánchez de Prado, M. D. (2019a). The supply of glass at Portus Ilicitanus (Alicante, Spain): Meta-analysis of HIMT glasses. Archaeometry, 61(3), 647–662. https://doi.org/10.1111/arcm.1244610.1111/arcm.12446Search in Google Scholar

De Juan, J., Vigil-Escalera Guirado, A., Caceres Gutiérrez, Y., & Schibille, N. (2019b). Changes in the supply of eastern Mediterranean glasses to Visigothic Spain. Journal of Archaeological Science, 107, 3–31. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2019.04.00610.1016/j.jas.2019.04.006Search in Google Scholar

Fiori, C., Vandini, M., & Mazzotti, V. (2004). (Ed). I colori del vetro antico. Il vetro musivo bizantino. Il Prato collana Pleiadi, Padova, Italy.Search in Google Scholar

Foy, D., Picon, M., Vichy, M., Thirion-Merle, V. (2003). Caractérisationdesverres de la fin de l’Antiquité en Méditerranée occidentale: l’émergence de nouveauxcourantscommerciaux. In Foy, D. & Nenna, M.-D. (Eds.), Échanges et commerceduverredans le monde antique: actesducolloque de l›Associationfrançaise pour l›archéologie du verre, Aix-en-Provence et Marseille, 7-9 juin 2001 (pp. 41–85). Éditions Monique Mergoil, Montagnac.Search in Google Scholar

Freestone, I. C. (1994). Chemical analysis of “raw” glass fragments. In H. R. Hurst (Ed.), Excavation of Chartage, The Circular Harbour (Vol. II). Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press.Search in Google Scholar

Freestone, I. C. (2005). The Provenance of Ancient Glass through Compositional Analysis. MRS Proceedings, 852, OO8.1. https://doi.org/10.1557/PROC-852-OO8.110.1557/PROC-852-OO8.1Search in Google Scholar

Freestone, I. C. (2015). The recycling and reuse of roman glass: Analytical approaches. Journal of Glass Studies, 57, 29–36.Search in Google Scholar

Freestone, I. C., Ponting, M., & Hughes, M. J. (2002). The origins of byzantine glass from Maroni Petrera, Cyprus. Archaeometry, 44(2), 257–272. https://doi.org/10.1111/1475-4754.t01-1-0005810.1111/1475-4754.t01-1-00058Search in Google Scholar

Fryer, B. J., Jackson, S. E., & Longerich, H. P. (1995). The design, operation and role of the laser-ablation microprobe coupled with an inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometer (LAM-ICP-MS) in the Earth sciences. Canadian Mineralogist, 33, 303–312.Search in Google Scholar

Gao, S., Liu, X., Yuan, H., Hattendorf, B., Gunther, D., Chen, L., & Hu, S. (2002). Determination of forty-two major and trace elements in USGS and NIST SRM glasses by laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Geostandards Newsletter: The Journal of Geostandards and Geoanalysis, 26(2), 181–196. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-908X.2002.tb00886.x10.1111/j.1751-908X.2002.tb00886.xSearch in Google Scholar

Gavagnini S., & Roascio S. (2006). Strutture e riti di fondazione in una chiesa rurale alpina tardo-medievale: il caso di San Paolo di Illegio (Tolmezzo, UD), In Francovich, R. & Valenti, M. (Eds.), IV Congresso Nazionale di Archeologia Medievale. Pré-tirages (Scriptorium dell’Abbazia. Abbazia di San Galgano, Chiusdino – Siena, 26-30 settembre 2006), (pp. 297303). Florence: All’insegna del Giglio.Search in Google Scholar

Gliozzo, E., Braschi, E., Giannetti, F., Langone, A., & Turchiaro, M. (2019). New geochemical and isotopic insights into the Late Antique Apulian glass and the HIMT1 and HIMT2 glass productions – the glass vessels from San Giusto (Foggia, Italy) and the diagrams for provenance studies. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 11(1), 141–170. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-017-0531-410.1007/s12520-017-0531-4Search in Google Scholar

Gratuze, B. (2004). Etude des perlesprotohistoriques en verre du tumulus de Courtesoult (Haute-Saône). IRAMAT, Institute de Recherche sur les Archéomatériaux, Centre Ernest Babelon. CNRS Orléans.Search in Google Scholar

Gunther, D., & Heinrich, C. A. (1999). Enhanced sensitivity in laser ablation-ICP mass spectrometry using helium-argon mixtures as aerosol carrier. Journal of Analytical Atomic Spectrometry, 14, 1363–1368. https://doi.org/10.1039/A901648A10.1039/A901648ASearch in Google Scholar

Hellemans, K., Cagno, S., Bogana, L., Janssens, K., & Mendera, M. (2019). LA-ICP-MS labels early medieval Tuscan finds from Siena and Donoratico s late natron glass. Journal of Archaeological Science. Reports, 23, 844–853. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2018.12.00210.1016/j.jasrep.2018.12.002Search in Google Scholar

Henderson, J., McLoughlin, S. D., & McPhail, D. S. (2004). Radical changes in islamic glass technology: Evidence for conservatism and experimentation with new glass recipes from early and middle Islamic Raqqa, Syria. Archaeometry, 46(3), 439–468. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2004.00167.x10.1111/j.1475-4754.2004.00167.xSearch in Google Scholar

Henderson, J., Chenery, S., Faber, E., & Kröger, J. (2016). The use of electron probe microanalysis and laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry for yhe investigation of 8th-14th century plant ash glasses from Middle East. Microchemical Journal, 128, 134–152. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.microc.2016.03.01310.1016/j.microc.2016.03.013Search in Google Scholar

Huisman, D. J., Pols, S., Joosten, I., van Os, B. J. H., & Smit, A. (2008). Degradation processes in colourless Roman glass: Cases from the Bocholtz burial. Journal of Archaeological Science, 35(2), 398–411. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2007.04.00810.1016/j.jas.2007.04.008Search in Google Scholar

Isings, C. (1957). Roman glass from dated finds (B. Wolters Groningen, Ed.).Search in Google Scholar

Jackson, C. M., & Paynter, S. (2016). A Great big melting pot: Exploring patterns of glass supply, consumption and recycling in Roman Coppergate, York. Archaeometry, 58(1), 68–95. https://doi.org/10.1111/arcm.1215810.1111/arcm.12158Search in Google Scholar

Luppino, S., & De Presbiteris, D. (2003). Suppellettili vitree da Copia-Thurii: primi dati per un inquadramento del materiale inedito dallo scavo di Parco del Cavallo (1975). In A. Coscarella (a cura di) Il vetro in Calabria. Contributo per una carta di distribuzione in Italia (pp. 493–520). Soveria Mannelli.Search in Google Scholar

Otranto, G. (1995). La cristianizzazione della Calabria e la formazione delle diocesi. VetChr, 32, 39–378.Search in Google Scholar

Paynter, S., & Kearns, T. (2011). West Clacton Reservoir, Great Benteley, Essex: Analysis of Glass Tesserae. Research Department Report Series no 44. Portsmouth: English Heritage.Search in Google Scholar

Phelps, M., Freestone, I., Gorin-Rosen, Y., & Gratuze, B. (2016). Natron glass production and supply in the late antique and early medieval Near East: The effect of the Byzantine-Islamic transition. Journal of Archaeological Science, 75, 57–71. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2016.08.00610.1016/j.jas.2016.08.006Search in Google Scholar

Pearce, N. J. G., Perkins, W. T., Westgate, J. A., Gorton, M. T., Jackson, S. E., Neal, C. R., & Chenery, S. P. (1997). A compilation of new and published major and trace element data for NIST SRM 610 and SRM 612 glass reference materials. Geostandards Newsletter, XXI(1), 114–115. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-908X.1997.tb00538.x10.1111/j.1751-908X.1997.tb00538.xSearch in Google Scholar

Roma, G., & Papparella, F. C. (2018). Il Duomo di Cosenza alla luce delle recenti indagini archeologiche. Alcune note preliminary. In Carra, R. M. & Emma Vitale, E. (Eds.), Studi in memoria di Fabiola Ardizzone. 2. Scavi, Topografia e Archeologia del paesaggio (pp. 157–181). Palermo: Antipodes.Search in Google Scholar

Schibille, N., Sterrett-Krause, A., & Freestone, I. C. (2017). Glass groups, glass supply and recycling in late Roman Carthage. Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 9(6), 1223–1241. https://doi.org/10.1007/s12520-016-0316-110.1007/s12520-016-0316-1Search in Google Scholar

Schibille, N., Gratuze, B., Ollivier, B., & Blondeau, E. (2019). Chronology of early Islamic glass compositions from Egypt. Journal of Archaeological Science, 104, 10–18. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2019.02.00110.1016/j.jas.2019.02.001Search in Google Scholar

Silvestri, A., Molin, G., & Salviulo, G. (2005a). Roman and Medieval glass from the Italian area: Bulk characterisation and relationships with production technology. Archaeometry, 47(4), 797–816. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1475-4754.2005.00233.x10.1111/j.1475-4754.2005.00233.xSearch in Google Scholar

Silvestri, A., Molin, G., & Salviulo, G. (2005b). Archaeological glass alteration products in marine and land-based environments: Morphological, chemical and microtextural characterization. Journal of Non-Crystalline Solids, 351(16-17), 1338–1349. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2005.03.01310.1016/j.jnoncrysol.2005.03.013Search in Google Scholar

Silvestri, A. (2008). The coloured glass of Iulia Felix. Journal of Archaeological Science, 35(2), 1489–1501. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2007.10.01410.1016/j.jas.2007.10.014Search in Google Scholar

Silvestri, A., Molin, G., & Salviulo, G. (2008). The colourless glass of Iulia Felix. Journal of Archaeological Science, 35(2), 331–341. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jas.2007.03.01010.1016/j.jas.2007.03.010Search in Google Scholar

Uboldi, M. (1995). Diffusione dele lampade vitree in età tardoantica e altomedievale e spunti per una tipologia. [Ed. All’insegna del Giglio.]. Archeologia Medievale, XXII, 93–145.Search in Google Scholar

Wagner, B., Novak, A., Bulska, E., Kunicki-Goldfinger, J., Schalm, O., & Janssens, K. (2008). Complementary analysis of historical glass by scanning electron microscopy with energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy and laser ablation inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry. Microchimica Acta, 162(3-4), 415–424. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00604-007-0835-710.1007/s00604-007-0835-7Search in Google Scholar

Received: 2019-12-27
Accepted: 2020-02-28
Published Online: 2020-06-27

© 2020 Donatella Barca et al., published by De Gruyter

This work is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Scroll Up Arrow