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A journey of over 200 years: early studies on wootz ingots and new evidence from Konasamudram, India

Jaikishan, S; Desai, M; Rehren, T; (2021) A journey of over 200 years: early studies on wootz ingots and new evidence from Konasamudram, India. Advances in Archaeomaterials 10.1016/j.aia.2021.04.002. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Recent new evidence emerged from the crucible steel production site of Konasamudram, Telangana, India. A hoard of 60 crucible steel ingots from this site offers a unique opportunity to study details of the early large-scale production of this fabled material, beginning with a detailed documentation of the weights and sizes of 45 of them. Historically, Konasamudram has been an important pre-modern crucible steel manufacturing and trading centre in India, as reported by Persian and European travelogues, and may have been the source of many of the early ingots studied during the past 200 years. Therefore, the aim of this work is to present a dimensional analysis of these ingots and interpret the data in the context of earlier studies, to address questions of consistency in manufacturing, standardization of weights and other physical attributes. The newly-discovered ingots show considerable uniformity in shape, size and weights, indicative of a single event production during the heydays of crucible steel making, while the ingots previously reported in the literature vary much more widely.

Type: Article
Title: A journey of over 200 years: early studies on wootz ingots and new evidence from Konasamudram, India
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.aia.2021.04.002
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.aia.2021.04.002
Language: English
Additional information: © 2021 University of Science and Technology Beijing. Publishing services by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of KeAi Communications Co. Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/)
Keywords: Wootz; Ingots; Telangana; Crucible steel
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of S&HS > Institute of Archaeology > Institute of Archaeology Gordon Square
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10127689
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