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Tracing a bog-iron bloomery furnace in an adjacent lake-sediment record in Ängersjö, central Sweden, using pollen and geochemical signals
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
Umeå University, Faculty of Science and Technology, Department of Ecology and Environmental Sciences.
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2016 (English)In: Vegetation History and Archaeobotany, ISSN 0939-6314, E-ISSN 1617-6278, Vol. 25, no 6, 569-581 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Recent studies of bloomery sites in Sweden indicate the amount of iron produced with this early low-technology smelter was greater than previously thought, which implies greater economic importance. Little is known about the history of bloomery technology, not least the timeframe over which individual bloomeries were operated, as well as their impact on the landscape because of resource consumption and pollution. In this study we performed pollen and geochemical analyses of the lake-sediment record from Rortjarnen, which is 120 m from the remains of a documented bloomery [one radiocarbon date: ad 1300-1435 (1 sigma)], in A"ngersjo, Halsingland. A surface-soil transect shows a limited geochemical signal only within 20 m of the bloomery, and the sediment pollen record provides little direct evidence of an active bloomery and is consistent with other studied sites in the area linked to forest grazing or cultivation. Instead, we find major changes in sediment geochemistry during ad 800-1200, centered on a unique peak in Pb at ad 1030-1060. These changes include, e.g., Si (biogenic) and P, together with changes in pollen (e.g., Betula, Picea, Cyperaceae), which together indicate disturbance in the forest and especially the adjoining fen. We attribute these changes to a period of bloomery-related activities predating the radiocarbon date of the charcoal from the bloomery, and suggest that date represents a late phase for the site.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 25, no 6, 569-581 p.
Keyword [en]
Pollen, Geochemistry, Bloomery furnace, Iron production, Palaeolimnology
National Category
Botany Geochemistry
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-127710DOI: 10.1007/s00334-016-0567-xISI: 000386396300005OAI: oai:DiVA.org:umu-127710DiVA: diva2:1056654
Available from: 2016-12-15 Created: 2016-11-18 Last updated: 2016-12-15Bibliographically approved

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Karlsson, JonRydberg, JohanThöle, PhilineBindler, Richard
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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
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