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Obsidian-Artifact Source Analysis for the Mixtequilla Region, South-Central Veracruz, Mexico

  • Barbara L. Stark (a1), Lynette Heller (a1), Michael D. Glascock (a2), J. Michael Elam (a2) and Hector Neff (a2)...

Abstract

Neutron activation and statistical analyses establish source ascriptions for 201 obsidian artifacts representing Preclassic, Classic, and Postclassic period contexts in the Gulf Coast region of Mexico. Zaragoza-Oyameles, Puebla, and Pico de Orizaba, Veracruz, are the most common sources, but procurement patterns and technology shifted during the archaeological sequence. Comparative information is discussed for all periods, but especially the distribution of Zaragoza-Oyameles obsidian in the Classic period is examined. The distribution network for this obsidian served several regions. The importance of long-distance obsidian distribution for Teotihuacán is called into question.

Los análisis por el método de activación neutrónica y de estadística permiten la identificación de fuentes de materia prima para 201 artefactos de obsidiana, que provienen de contextos arqueológicos del Preclásico, Clásico y Postclásico en La Mixtequilla. La Mixtequilla es una subárea cultural en la planicie costera del Golfo de México, en el lado oeste de la cuenca baja del Río Papaloapan, donde corre un afluente, el Río Blanco. Zaragoza-Oyameles, Puebla y Pico de Orizaba, en el estado de Veracruz, son las fuentes de obsidiana más abundantes de donde proceden las piezas analizadas y aquellas de la collección completa. La generalización en cuanto a la colección entera se basa en una clasificación del material según sus características visuales. Tanto los patrones de obtención como la tecnología cambiaron durante la secuencia arqueológica. Durante el Preclásico, las fuentes fueron más diversas, y las lascas fueron importantes en la tecnología. En el Clásico, predominó una tecnología de navajas prismáticas hechas sobre obsidiana de Zaragoza-Oyameles. En el Postclásico, las navajas de obsidiana del Pico de Orizaba empezaron a ser abundantes. La obsidiana verde aumenta en cantidad solamente en el Postclásico Tardío. Se discute información comparativa para todos los períodos, pero especialmente se enfoca en la distribución de la obsidiana de Zaragoza-Oyameles durante el Clásico. La red de distribución de esta obsidiana alcanzó varias regiones. La importancia de la distribución de obsidiana a larga distancia por Teotihuacán se ve dudosa.

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Obsidian-Artifact Source Analysis for the Mixtequilla Region, South-Central Veracruz, Mexico

  • Barbara L. Stark (a1), Lynette Heller (a1), Michael D. Glascock (a2), J. Michael Elam (a2) and Hector Neff (a2)...

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