BG / EN
Home » News » News » Public lecture by Prof. Dr. Ernst Pernicka, Curt-Engelhorn-Zentrum Archäometrie, Mannheim and Institut für Geowissenschaften, Universität Heidelberg
Public lecture by Prof. Dr. Ernst Pernicka, Curt-Engelhorn-Zentrum Archäometrie, Mannheim and Institut für Geowissenschaften, Universität Heidelberg

17.01.2018

The National Archaeological Institute with Museum (NAIM-BAS) is pleased to invite you to a public lecture by Prof. Dr. Ernst Pernicka, Curt-Engelhorn-Zentrum Archäometrie, Mannheim (http://www.cez-archaeometrie.de/) and Institut für Geowissenschaften, Universität Heidelberg (http://www.geow.uni-heidelberg.de/).

The lecture titled “Production and Distribution of Gold in Prehistoric Europe“ will be held in the Board Hall of NAIM-BAS, Sofia, 1 Atanas Burov Square (opposite the Bulgarian presidency building) on 30 January, 2018 (Tuesday) at 4.30 pm.

Although gold occurs mainly in the metallic state in nature it appears only after copper and lead comparatively late in prehistory. After a short overview of the beginnings of metallurgy this phenomenon and possible explanations will be discussed. Since the discovery of the chalcolithic cemetery of Varna archaeologists were intrigued by the early and yet so obvious interrelation between technology (especially metallurgy with numerous and outstanding finds) and the elites of the deceased. The exceptional gold finds were studied in the frame of a long-term German-Bulgarian research project and it was possible to gain more detailed insights into the chronology and metallurgy of this burial site. This will be presented.

Furthermore, an overview of gold production and purification methods as well as modern methods of analyses will be provided. Attempts to relate ancient gold objects to geological ore deposits rely on such analyses and the possibilities and limitations of this approach will be discussed. As an example, the gold inlays on the Sky Disc of Nebra with the earliest astronomically correct representation of the night sky could be related to gold deposits in Cornwall. The discovery of the Late Bronze Age gold mine of Ada Tepe in southeastern Bulgaria offers the chance to reverse the provenance question and search for contemporary gold artefacts that mirror the composition of the gold produced in the mine. Finally, it has recently been claimed that Mycenaean gold could be identified in southern Bavaria. However, it could be shown by chemical analyses that the gold found in Bavaria is modern.

Prof. Pernicka is scientific director of Curt-Engelhorn-Zentrum Archäometrie, Mannheim. He is also a lecturer at the Institut für Geowissenschaften, Universität Heidelberg. More information about him can be found here (https://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ernst_Pernicka).