Egypt’s Early Iron Artifacts Crafted from Meteorites
Thursday, May 30, 2013
MANCHESTER, ENGLAND—Egypt’s oldest-known iron artifacts are 5,000-year-old tube-shaped beads that were discovered in 1911 in a cemetery at Gerzeh. New analysis of a bead kept at the Manchester Museum with scanning electron microscopy confirms that the metal, which has a high nickel content, came from a meteorite. In addition to the high levels of nickel, the metal exhibits a crystalline structure found only in iron meteorites. The ancient Egyptians formed the bead by hammering a fragment of the iron into a thin plate, which was then bent into a tube shape. “Iron was very strongly associated with royalty and power,” explained Diane Johnson of The Open University.
Following the whale diet, climate change in ancient Tanzania, domesticating turkeys, Kazakhstan’s cult complex, and kangaroo jewelry
Self-expression in the Bronze Age