Ochre fingerprints: distinguishing among Malawian mineral pigment sources with homogenized ochre chip LA-ICPMS

Zipkin, A. M., Hanchar, J. M., Brooks, A. S., Grabowski, M. W., Thompson, J. C. and Gomani-Chindebvu, E. (2014) Ochre fingerprints: distinguishing among Malawian mineral pigment sources with homogenized ochre chip LA-ICPMS. Archaeometry, 57 2: 297-317. doi:10.1111/arcm.12090


Author Zipkin, A. M.
Hanchar, J. M.
Brooks, A. S.
Grabowski, M. W.
Thompson, J. C.
Gomani-Chindebvu, E.
Title Ochre fingerprints: distinguishing among Malawian mineral pigment sources with homogenized ochre chip LA-ICPMS
Journal name Archaeometry   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0003-813X
1475-4754
Publication date 2014-01-01
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1111/arcm.12090
Volume 57
Issue 2
Start page 297
End page 317
Total pages 21
Place of publication Chichester, West Sussex, United Kingdom
Publisher Wiley-Blackwell
Language eng
Abstract In this study, we compared the effectiveness of instrumental neutron activation analysis (INAA) of bulk ochre to laser ablation-inductively coupled plasma mass spectrometry of homogenized ochre chips (HOC LA–ICPMS) at distinguishing among three ochre sources in northern Malawi. Both techniques upheld the Provenance Postulate; however, HOC LA–ICPMS required less sample material than INAA and facilitated fast, inexpensive replicate observations that allowed for more robust statistical analysis. Our results indicated that HOC LA–ICPMS is a maturing technique that will be a valuable option for analysing artefacts that require minimally destructive sampling but are too large to fit into the laser cell for direct ablation. With regard to the statistical procedures used, stepwise canonical discriminant analysis was demonstrated to be a highly effective method for distinguishing among ochre sources, even in the presence of significant intra-source and intra-sample heterogeneity. Continued development of the HOC sample preparation technique will expand the range of archaeological ochre artefacts that can be included in provenance studies and prevent bias towards artefacts of convenient-to-analyse dimensions.
Keyword Ochre
Malawi
LA–ICPMS
INAA
Provenance
Canonical Discriminant Analysis
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Social Science Publications
 
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Created: Thu, 13 Mar 2014, 21:28:33 EST by Dr Jessica Thompson on behalf of School of Social Science