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    The production, distribution and use of copper objects and the development of metallurgical skills in Neolithic Northern Central Europe and Southern Scandinavia are linked to early centres of copper metallurgy of South East Central Europe and Southeast Europe. A total of 45 Neolithic copper objects, until now the largest sample of Early Neolithic objects from the Northern Central European Plain and Southern Scandinavia, were selected for new lead isotope analyses. They aided in the identification of the origin of the copper: These new analyses indicate that the copper ore deposits in Southeastern Europe, especially from the Serbian mining areas, were used for the Early Neolithic northern artefacts (ca. 4100-3300 BC). The most likely sources of copper for the few Middle Neolithic artefacts (ca. 3300-2800 BC) seem to be from the Slovak Ore Mountains, the Serbian mining areas and the Eastern Alps, whereas deposits of the Slovak Ore Mountains and the Alpine region were used for the Late Neolithic and the Early Bronze Age (ca. 2300-1700 BC) artefacts. For the artefacts dated after 2000 BC, the Great Orme mine in Wales also appears to have been the source of copper for the analysed metals. The use of copper from different regions of Europe probably reflects changing social and cultural connectivities on a European scale and the changing chronology of copper exploitation. Copyright: © 2023 Brozio et al. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.


    Jan Piet Brozio, Zofia Stos-Gale, Johannes Müller, Nils Müller-Scheeßel, Sebastian Schultrich, Barbara Fritsch, Fritz Jürgens, Henry Skorna. The origin of Neolithic copper on the central Northern European plain and in Southern Scandinavia: Connectivities on a European scale. PloS one. 2023;18(5):e0283007

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    PMID: 37163484

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