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The development of the now-conventional periodization in the archaeology of the Ancient Near East was developed in the s to s.
There is no definitive cultural break between the 13th and 12th centuries BC throughout the entire region, although certain new features in the hill country, Transjordan and coastal region may suggest the appearance of the Aramaean and Sea People groups. There is evidence, however, of strong continuity with Bronze Age culture, although as one moves later into Iron Age the culture begins to diverge more significantly from that of the late 2nd millennium.
The Iron Age as an archaeological period is roughly defined as that part of the prehistory of a culture or region during which ferrous metallurgy was the dominant technology of metalworking. The characteristic of an Iron Age culture is the mass production of tools and weapons made from steel , typically alloys with a carbon content between approximately 0.
The use of steel has been based as much on economics as on metallurgical advancements. Early steel was made by smelting iron. In China , there is no recognizable prehistoric period characterized by ironworking, as Bronze Age China transitions almost directly into the Qin dynasty of imperial China; "Iron Age" in the context of China is sometimes used for the transitional period of c. They have been identified as meteoric iron shaped by careful hammering. Such iron, being in its native metallic state, required no smelting of ores.
Smelted iron appears sporadically in the archeological record from the middle Bronze Age. Tin's low melting point of Akanuma concludes that "The combination of carbon dating, archaeological context, and archaeometallurgical examination indicates that it is likely that the use of ironware made of steel had already begun in the third millennium BC in Central Anatolia".
Tewari concludes that "knowledge of iron smelting and manufacturing of iron artifacts was well known in the Eastern Vindhyas and iron had been in use in the Central Ganga Plain, at least from the early second millennium BC". African sites are turning up dates as early as BC. Between BC and BC diffusion in the understanding of iron metallurgy and the use of iron objects was fast and far-flung. As evidence, many bronze implements were recycled into weapons during that time.
More widespread use of iron led to improved steel-making technology at a lower cost. Thus, even when tin became available again, iron was cheaper, stronger and lighter, and forged iron implements superseded cast bronze tools permanently. The Iron Age in the Ancient Near East is believed to have begun with the discovery of iron smelting and smithing techniques in Anatolia or the Caucasus and Balkans in the late 2nd millennium BC c. The Early Iron Age artefacts found in Kultepe site, Azerbaijan show that iron smelting was known and used in this region before the 2nd millennium BC as early as the 3rd millennium BC.
In the Mesopotamian states of Sumer , Akkad and Assyria , the initial use of iron reaches far back, to perhaps BC. The development of iron smelting was once attributed to the Hittites of Anatolia during the Late Bronze Age. As part of the Late Bronze Age-Early Iron Age, the Bronze Age collapse saw the slow, comparatively continuous spread of iron-working technology in the region.
It was long held that the success of the Hittite Empire during the Late Bronze Age had been based on the advantages entailed by the "monopoly" on ironworking at the time. The view of such a "Hittite monopoly" has come under scrutiny and no longer represents a scholarly consensus. Iron metal is singularly scarce in collections of Egyptian antiquities. The explanation of this would seem to be that the relics are in most cases the paraphernalia of tombs, the funeral vessels and vases, and iron being considered an impure metal by the ancient Egyptians it was never used in their manufacture of these or for any religious purposes.
It was attributed to Seth, the spirit of evil who according to Egyptian tradition governed the central deserts of Africa. In the funeral text of Pepi I , the metal is mentioned.
In Europe, the Iron Age is the last stage of prehistoric Europe and the first of the protohistoric periods, which initially means descriptions of a particular area by Greek and Roman writers. For much of Europe, the period came to an abrupt local end after conquest by the Romans, though ironworking remained the dominant technology until recent times.
Elsewhere it may last until the early centuries AD, and either Christianization or a new conquest in the Migration Period. Iron working was introduced to Europe in the late 11th century BC,  probably from the Caucasus , and slowly spread northwards and westwards over the succeeding years. The Iron Age did not start when iron first appeared in Europe but it began to replace bronze in the preparation of tools and weapons.
The widespread use of the technology of iron was implemented in Europe simultaneously with Asia. The size of furnaces remained small in this era, limited output, and the technology was dependent upon the amount of timber in the area. As transport was poor, everything needed to be close together, further limiting production. Some small ironmasters tried to group together to get around this issue, with some success.
In addition, British ore was plentiful but contained lots of sulfur and phosphorous, which made brittle iron. The technology to deal with this problem was lacking. The industry was also highly labor-intensive and, while the labor supply was good, this produced a very high cost. Consequently, British iron was used for cheap, poor quality items like nails. As the industrial revolution developed, so did the iron industry. A set of innovations, from different materials to new techniques, allowed iron production to expand greatly.
Print This Page A useful way to understand Bible accounts is to place them in the context of historical periods. If we compare historical books and commentaries, we soon see that these Ages occurred at different dates around the world as nations developed at varying rates in the areas where they lived.
An expert in archaeology Leen Ritmeyer, Archaeological Architect has given us the following dates which refer to the lands of the Bible in the Middle East:. We notice that some dates overlap each other. A modern day illustration of this can be seen in how many people today would use the internet for reference and research, whereas others still refer to books.
In some countries, younger people are likely to measure in metres and centimetres, or grams, but the older generation often still prefer feet, inches and ounces. The modern world is changing, but there is no actual cut— off point for certain methods or systems. Hands on History: Ancient Britain.
Travel back in time to Ancient Britain and create your own stone circle. Eric voiced by Daniel Roche visits Roman Britain , where he lives a life of privilege. This disambiguation page lists articles associated with the title Black moss. If an internal link led you here, you may wish to change the link to point directly to the intended article.
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