image/svg+xml21 IX/1/2018 InterdIscIplInarIa archaeologIca natural scIences In archaeology homepage: Study on Late Bronze Age Potteries of Shahrak-e Firouzeh, Neyshabur, Iran by XRD and XRF Mohammad Hossein Rezaei a , Hassan Basafa a , Parasto Masjedi Khak a* , Mahya Azar a a Department of Archaeology, University of Neyshabur, Adib Blvd, Neyshabur, Khorasan-e Razavi, Iran 1. Introduction Because of its continuous and abundant production, pottery has always been associated with the alterations and innovations of its shapes and patterns. Such changes happen partly due to the internal intricacies of cultures over time and partly due to the cultural and economic ties with neighbouring and distant societies. On the other hand, for various reasons, such as being a merchandise that can be exported as well as its use in transporting other goods, pottery can be considered as the best cultural data for the recognition of ethnic groups and societies. Pottery is so important in studying the relationship between the diferent cultural units of a region on the one hand, and trans-regional cultures on the other, that no other cultural data in archaeology could reach the same level of signifcance. Thus pottery should be studied not only from various aspects but also from diferent perspectives. The samples that were discovered across the ancient sites of Iran show the connection of this art to culture, economy, and religion; moreover, they display the taste and virtue of the potters (Majidzadeh, 1991).Using chemical and physical methods, archaeometry is a great help to archaeologists and art historians. Its use in determining the origins of archaeological fndings is one of the most modern approaches in the feld of archaeometry. This feld of science presents archaeological data, or related phenomena, as quantitative, measurable or qualitative data. Among the laboratory methods, two relatively quick and easy ones that have helped the felds of archaeology and art history are the XRF and XRD methods. XRF (X-ray fuorescence) involves a device for measuring the wavelength and intensity of fuorescence waves released from the atoms of a sample through which the amounts of the sample’s constituent elements can be recognized (Talai et al ., 2009). As a rapid mechanical analysis tool, this device is widely used in many laboratories around the world (Sabzali et al ., 2010). The XRD (X-ray difraction) test is also used to measure atomic plate spacing; in other words, to identify the material structure and ultimately determine the minerals within the pottery. For the XRD test, the pottery sample must be crushed into powder and then placed in the device. The device automatically analyzes the sample and records the analysis results in the computer connected to it (Talai et al ., 2009). Volume IX ● Issue 1/2018 ● Pages 21–30 *Corresponding author. E-mail: ARtIcle INfo Article history: Received: 9 th August 2017Accepted: 24 th April 2018DOI: 10.24916/iansa.2018.1.2 Key words: PotteryXRDXRFShahrake FirouzehBacteria Margiana Archaeological Complex ABstRAct During excavations of the Shahrake Firouzeh site, much evidence of the Bactria Margiana Archaeological Complex or Amu Darya Civilization has been found. Such evidence is spread across northern Iran, northern Afghanistan, eastern Turkmenistan, southern Uzbekistan, and western Tajikistan. In the present study, pottery samples from the Firoozeh town area were studied using XRD and XRF methods. Using the XRF method and Dplot Software, 15 samples were studied and the data evaluated by analyzing the ratio of various components. The results of the study show that the dominant clay source of the pottery samples existed in the same region, while two other clay sub- sources from adjoining regions were also identifed.
image/svg+xmlIANSA 2018 ● IX/1 ● 21–30Mohammad Hossein Rezaei, Hassan Basafa, Parasto Masjedi Khak, Mahya Azar: Study on Late Bronze Age Potteries of Shahrak-e Firouzeh, Neyshabur, Iran by XRD and XRF 22 In this regard, such use of laboratory methods and techniques enables more accurate and reliable results to be obtained. There exist several techniques for the identifcation of the materials and elements that form archaeological fndings and through which a broader range of knowledge and understanding of the rocks, pottery, their material, application, history, age, style, identity, origin, manufacturing process and technology used, source, and trade routes utilised, can be gained. Laboratory research on the physical characteristics of prehistoric pottery is one of the efcient non-descriptive methods that aim to identify such technical features as method of production, the presence or absence of vegetation, type of soil grading, type of tempering, and the quality of baking; moreover, the empty spaces in the body of the clay, which is related to the general quality of the clay, can be determined (Talayi, Yari, and Taqizoqi, 2009). 2. Area under Study Neyshabur town is located in the Neyshabur plain in the Razavi Khorasan Province in northeast Iran (Figure 1). This area has a special geographic and climatic situation and, due to its location on the Silk Road, has attracted so many people throughout history that much archaeological evidence has been found from the prehistoric, historical, and Islamic era in this region. Neyshabur plain is located on the slopes of the Alborz Mountains and Binaloud Heights that provide rich water sources to this plain. Water abundance has created numerous habitats in diferent parts of the slopes of these mountains and the Shahrake Firouzeh site is one of the most signifcant ones (Figure 2). This area with a latitude of 36 degrees and 12 minutes, longitude of 58 degrees and 47 minutes, and with an average height of 1250 metres above sea level is located in the Neyshabur plain (Basafa et al ., 2014). This area is named after the newly-constructed residential complex in the western part of the present-day Neyshabur city which is located in the eastern part of the Faroub Ruman River. As the most important water stream of the city, this river originates from the highlands of the Binaloud Heights. It is also one of the independent rivers of the Markazi Desert sub-areas that foods in the rainy season. Because of the slopes of the plain, with the food of the Farub