Trade

3 archaeologists with a discovery of 3 Roman amphoras at a Garamantian settlementParticularly impressive is the volume of imported ceramics in Fazzan. We are using these ceramic assemblages to trace trading networks and the effects of cultural and political phenomenon on the nature of commercial exchange.

An additional important element of the research is the Amphora Project, which looks in more detail at the typology and provenance of the transport vessels coming into Fazzan, with important implications for the scale and direction of trade.

Finally, work is being undertaken on the handmade wares to search for their origins and hence the movement of pots and ideas within the Saharan landscape.

Analysis of polychrome bead TSG047A large number of imported glass vessels, many of which were made in the Roman world, have also been recovered, as have numerous glass beads and bangles.

An image from the analysis of polychrome bead TSG047A selection of these items is being analysed using a range of tailored techniques: non-destructive μXRF, electron microprobe analysis, and LA-ICP-MS. The results will provide information on the compositional groups to which the various glasses belong, which feeds into our understanding of their provenance and production technology.

For more on this subject, see the report on our 2014 conference on Trade.