This is defined as Partly O, as it was not constantly maintained to allow full oxidation. In some cases, especially in vessels belonging to the B and ScrB, the surface is consistently black to dark brown, meaning that the atmosphere was reducing in the last stage of the firing and not maintained for long enough to allow a complete reduction of the vessel. In these cases, a Parly R label is added to identify the change in atmosphere at the final stage Fig.
Microstructures developed during firing, paste and surface composition are discussed here by phase and fabric, summarised in Table 6. Discussion of surface treatment is limited here to those carried out before firing and affected by temperature and atmosphere during firing i. Iron-rich, calcium-poor paint? Alike NV Partly O The samples of the Blue fabric show typical non-vitrified NV microstructure Fig. Yellow fabric samples were produced with a low calcareous paste which is higher in magnesium and develops a characteristic microporous microstructure probably due to its composition Fig. Maniatis et al.
Such samples also show micro-bloating in the core, which could suggest a fast-firing procedure Fig. Buxeda et al. In terms of surface treatment, the examination of B and ScrB suggests that burnishing was performed directly on the body and did not involve the application of a slip: the surface raw material is the same as the body with higher concentrations of potassium and more rarely of aluminium, which is due to the alignment and compaction of fine clay particles by burnishing cf. Kilikoglou and Maniatis , p. The microstructure of the vessel surface is flat and more compact compared to the body and it shows NV or IV stages Fig.
The surface layer looks to be a well-flattened portion of the body, which being high in iron and low in calcium paste, suggesting the vessel was slipped Fig. This vessel seems to be an exception amongst the others. The roughness of the surface may be due to tempering with sand-size aplastic inclusions, resulting in the characteristic granulated appearance. The microstructure developed by the surface layer is typical of low calcareous clay Fig. The shift in the main bands of FT-IR spectra is caused by a change in the crystalline and amorphous phases in the sample due to temperature increase cf.
Weiner , pp. Figure 7 shows some of the FT-IR spectra according to fabric, while Table 7 presents the results for each sample.
Si-O, AlO def. Samples are arranged according to phase b broad peak, sh shoulder. The combination of analytical techniques and macroscopic examination is often used to assess firing in terms of firing temperature ranges and atmosphere. However, the works of Gosselain and Livingstone Smith suggest that the heating rate i. On the contrary, two-space firing vessels and fuel are separated, such as in two-chamber kiln has a slow heating gradient and longer soaking times, allowing the development of microstructural and mineralogical changes along the vessel walls.
Leaving aside for now the distinction between different structures, some of these features were observed during the examination of the material from Phaistos and allow us to discuss firing procedures beyond the definition of equivalent firing temperature, considering as much as we can also the atmosphere, heating rate and soaking time developed during firing cf. Table 8. In terms of the temperature range, the microstructural, chemical and mineralogical changes observed allow us to group samples into: Very low fired : Vessels in this range show a nNV microstructure, the presence of molecular vibrations for crystalline water and specific amorphous phases.
Table 8 Interpreted temperature ranges and firing rate for each sample examined. In terms of firing temperature range, this study shows that in FN III the majority of the vessels belong to the very low to low fired range and only a few samples to the medium to high fired range. In FN IV, the vessels belong to the medium fired range increases compared to the previous phase, but vessels still share the characteristics of the low fired range.
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