Soil Parent Materials and the Pottery of Roman Galilee: A Comparative Study

Moshe Wieder, David Adan-Bayewitz

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


The paper presents a comparative micromorphological analysis of the range of soil materials used to make the pottery of the hilly Galilee during the Roman period, and the ceramic products made from these materials. The four soil units that served as raw material for most of the pottery made in this period and region are examined along with pottery derived from each of them. For each soil unit, the soil characteristics and processes are described, followed by a presentation of the micromorphological characteristics of the soil material and those of the pottery made from that material. The contribution of the aeolian dust component to the soil materials is discussed as well as the identification of the tempering materials (nonplastics or other soil materials) added to the pottery paste. The study demonstrates the close correlation in microfabric between the pottery and original soil materials, sheds light on the raw material selection and modification practices of the potters of Roman Galilee, and has significant implications for provenance studies, using chemical analysis, on the pottery of this period and region.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)393-415
Number of pages23
JournalGeoarchaeology - An International Journal
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2002


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