WHEEL-MADE VESSELS FROM A WIELBARK CULTURE CEMETERY IN WEKLICE NEAR ELBLAG. A CONTRIBUTION TO RESEARCH ON THE WIELBARK CULTURE POTTERY WORKSHOP
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The four reconstructed urns proved very similar in shape and style, as well as manufacturing technique, suggesting a single workshop as their place of production. The clay used for the wheel-made vessels must have been fired in low temperatures. A comparative analysis was pursued on: (1) morphology; (2) style and ornamentation, and (3) technological execution, taking into consideration mainly chemical and mineralogical composition of used clay. Foremost, the vessels were observed to be very close in form. The vessel surface was mostly smooth and matt, a color of the clay suggesting an oxidizing technology of firing with reduced flow of oxygen in the last phase. The urns were executed of bands of clay 2- 4 cm wide, the bottoms of the vessels bearing evidence of being cut from the potter's wheel. Clay composition of six vases was very similar, the clay containing predominating minerals: quartz which dominated the matrix, orthoclase, indeterminable minerals rich in iron and albite. Grain-size was varying in diameter: larger than 0.2 mm to under 0.05 mm. The manufacturing technique and the matrix composition suggests that all vases were made in the same local (?) workshop. The results of analysis showed very close similarities between the clay composition of the locally hand-made and wheel-made vessels. It should be assumed that the both were manufactured in a local pottery workshop. The dating proved the most interesting . Two urns contained bronze fibulae characteristic of the B2/C1 phase - the oldest well-evidenced set of wheel-made ware from the territory of Wielbark Culture. A few similar pots occurred solely in the area between the Vistula and Pasleka rivers. This set of finds testifies to a workshop making wheel-made pottery having operated in the Elblag Heights sometime at the turn of the Early and Late Roman periods in the area. 9 Figures.
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