Re-dating of Chinese celadon shards excavated on Mapungubwe Hill, a 13th century Iron Age site in South Africa, using Raman spectroscopy, XRF and XRD
Version of Record online: 16 JUN 2005
Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Journal of Raman Spectroscopy
Volume 36, Issue 8, pages 806–816, August 2005
How to Cite
Prinsloo, L. C., Wood, N., Loubser, M., Verryn, S. M. C. and Tiley, S. (2005), Re-dating of Chinese celadon shards excavated on Mapungubwe Hill, a 13th century Iron Age site in South Africa, using Raman spectroscopy, XRF and XRD. J. Raman Spectrosc., 36: 806–816. doi: 10.1002/jrs.1367
- Issue online: 28 JUL 2005
- Version of Record online: 16 JUN 2005
- Manuscript Accepted: 17 MAR 2005
- Manuscript Received: 10 JAN 2005
Chinese celadon shards of the Longquan type, believed to date from the Southern Song dynasty (1127–1279 AD), were excavated in 1934 on Mapungubwe Hill, a 13th century Iron Age site in the Limpopo valley, South Africa. We studied the shards with Raman spectroscopy, x-ray fluorescence (XRF) spectroscopy and x-ray diffraction (XRD). The Raman polymerization index (Ip), calculated from the spectra of the glaze of the shards, indicated a higher firing temperature than expected for the relatively calcium-rich Longquan glazes of the Southern Song dynasty. XRF analysis of the glaze and XRD measurements of the bulk of the shards supported this view and date the shards to possibly the Yuan (1279–1368 AD) or even early Ming (1368–1644 AD) dynasties. These results have an impact on the chronology of the history of the region and therefore call for further research of a comparative nature of other Chinese celadon shards excavated on archaeological sites in Africa, in addition to additional carbon dates of Mapungubwe hill. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.