«BULLETIN OF THE IRKUTSK STATE UNIVERSITY. GEOARCHAEOLOGY, ETHNOLOGY, AND ANTHROPOLOGY SERIES»
ISSN 2227-2380 (Print)

List of issues > «Geoarchaeology, Ethnology, and Anthropology Series». 2015. Vol. 12

Chemical Compotition of Gold, Silver and Copper Products Found in the Koksharovska-8 Barrow (Primorye, X Century) and its Feasible Mineral Sources

Author(s)
V. K. Popov, N. A. Kliuev, E. A. Nozdrachev, I. Iu. Sleptsov
Abstract
In world practice of geoarchaeological researches in recent years, chemical composition of artifacts is studied by XRF method with the use of portable X-ray fluorescence spectrometer, which main advantage is its non-destructive application and a small size handy for field works. In this article, first XRF results for products of gold, silver and cooper from the medieval sepulchral complex nearby the Koksharovska village are presented. It has been found that ornaments from horse harness were made of copper (covering plate) and silver (tacks and harness overlay) with an admixture of copper, tin, lead and iron, and ornaments from a headdress were made of high-standard gold with insignificant impurity of iron and copper. Low copper content (less than 0,5 %) testifies that only native (placer) gold was used for the products manufacturing. Data on chemical composition of the gold artifacts was used to make a guess about possible mineral sources in Primorye territory where gold might be mined in the Middle Ages (the Bokhai kingdom period), in the first place gold-bearing areas with shows of ancient mine workings, like for example gold placer deposits of the Fadeevsky ore knot in the western Primorye.
Keywords
precious metals, portable X-ray fluorescence (PXRF) spectrometer, Imperial barrow, Koksharovska-8, Primorye Region
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