University of Cambridge > Talks.cam > Department of Earth Sciences Seminars (downtown) > The Rise of the Silk Roads c. 5,000 years ago: how Earth and Materials Sciences reveal the making of the first global economic network

The Rise of the Silk Roads c. 5,000 years ago: how Earth and Materials Sciences reveal the making of the first global economic network

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The Eurasian Steppe has been increasingly recognised as the place where fundamental technologies, languages and ideas originated and spread from Bronze Age onwards. The intricate system of trade networks at the time paved the way for the routes that long outlived the Bronze Age world, the Silk Roads. Of all items transported along these routes, the exchange of ores and metal objects would have been the largest in volume and the most fundamentally transformative for the steppe communities. The prehistory of the Silk Road is therefore intimately related to that of the steppe metallurgy, leading the field of study of its origins at the crossroads of archaeology and materials science research. The most recent archaeometallurgical studies shed new light on the origins, scale and networks of ores and metal supply long before silk was in vogue.

This talk is part of the Department of Earth Sciences Seminars (downtown) series.

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