Die Metallanalyse der Messingköpfe aus Benin im Ethnologischen Museum in Berlin
Baessler-Archiv 54.2006:81-94
Keywords: metal analysis, brass heads (Benin), Udo heads

The metal analysis of brass heads from Benin in the Anthropological Museum of Berlin
##From the Ethnological Museum in Berlin chemical analyses of 36 Benin heads have been obtained. It has been found that there is a clear correlation between the types of heads, classified by Dark (1975) and their composition. Early heads of Dark"s types 1, 2 and 7 have a low concentration of zinc, which just in one exception exceeds 10%. Heads of Dark"s type 3 have medium concentrations of zinc between 15-20%. The late heads of Dark"s Types 4, 5 and 8 are very rich in zinc with concentrations between 20 and 35%. The Udo heads are different in composition from the memorial heads. They contain more lead and by that they are similar in composition to early relief plates. A peculiar feature of early heads is the relatively high concentration of tin. The transition to brasses with lower concentrations of zinc, as well as characteristic trends of trace element concentrations provide, apart from the reliable zinc chronology, further possibilities to estimate the date of manufacture of brass objects of Benin.##