09. Juni 2017 – 10. Juni 2017

Searching for Gold

Resources and networks in the Bronze Age of the eastern Balkans

Conference by Reinhard Jung and Hristo Popov

The promising results of the recent large-scale excavations of the first and so far only excavated prehistoric goldmine in Europe at Ada Tepe in the Eastern Rhodopes, Bulgaria, provoke us to look at well-known archaeological evidence from a new perspective and to develop a wide range of new research questions. To this end OREA (Vienna) and NIAM (Sofia) organize a conference at the Institute for Oriental and European Archaeology (OREA, Austrian Academy of Sciences) with invited scholars working on the Bronze Age of Southeastern Europe and neighboring regions. We would like to take the opportunity to have a fresh look at the wider context of the 3rd and 2nd millennia BCE in the central and eastern Balkans as well as the networks of goods exchange connecting this region in different directions with the Bronze Age world. Several factors and questions are of special interest to this conference: the development of Bronze Age mining in Europe, provenancing raw metals and finished products by archaeometric methods, exchange of technological know-how, reconstruction of the environmental conditions of production, reconstruction of the social structure of the mining communities, and finally regional and long-distance contacts of communities in Southeastern Europe and beyond during the Bronze Age.

Papers will be in English and have a duration of 20 minutes plus 10 minutes time for discussion.

This conference is part of the collaboration between the Institute of Oriental and European Archaeology (OREA) of the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the National Institute of Archaeology with Museum (NIAM) of the Bulgarian Academy of Sciences in the framework of the FWF research project “Bronze Age Gold Road of the Balkans – Ada Tepe Mining: Producers and Consumers” (28451-G25).

The Keynote Lecture “Prehistoric gold mining: From technical practice to social control” for this conference will take place on Thursday 8 June 17h30, at:
Theatersaal, Sonnenfelsgasse 19, 1010 Vienna