3 years ago

Marqueur d’identification à micro-échelle de l’ivoire de mammouth dans les objets préhistoriques

Ina Reiche, Katharina Müller

Publication date: June–August 2018

Source: L'Anthropologie, Volume 122, Issue 3

Author(s): Ina Reiche, Katharina Müller


L’article décrit l’importance de l’identification de la matière dure d’origine animale pour obtenir la réponse à des questions archéologiques, et définit de nouveaux marqueurs basés sur l’analyse chimique fine et l’examen de la micromorphologie au cœur des objets. Il souligne les difficultés liées à l’identification de l’ivoire de mammouth dans les objets préhistoriques façonnés et usés. L’approche analytique employée est non invasive afin de conserver l’intégrité des objets préhistoriques rares et précieux. Elle se base sur l’analyse soit par spectrométrie d’émission de rayons X induite par protons (PIXE), soit par micro-tomographie X (microCT). Des exemples d’analyse et d’examen d’objets datant du Paléolithique supérieur illustrent le potentiel informatif de ces investigations.


This paper illustrates the importance of the material identification in order to be able to answer archaeological questions and describes the definition of new markers based on the chemical analysis and the study of the inner micro-morphology of the objects. The challenge for the identification of mammoth ivory is highlighted amongst prehistoric objects, which were heavily worked and used. The applied analytical approach is non-invasive to preserve the integrity of the rare and precious prehistoric objects. The objects are studied by means of Proton Induced X-ray emission (PIXE) and micro X-ray tomography (microCT). Examples of the study of objects dating back to the Upper Palaeolithic nicely illustrate the informative potential of this kind of investigations.

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