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Periodical article Periodical article Leiden University catalogue Leiden University catalogue WorldCat catalogue WorldCat
Title:Patching up evidence for ironworking in the Horn
Author:Mapunda, Bertram B.B.ISNI
Periodical:African Archaeological Review
Geographic term:Northeast Africa
Subjects:Iron Age
metalworking industry
Abstract:This paper offers hypotheses for the origins of ironworking in the Horn of Africa. Emphasis is placed on three archaeological areas: Meroe, Aksum and Dimam. Two conventional schools of thought are analysed. The first school favours an external origin and the second advocates local invention. The two viewpoints are critically examined and their weaknesses exposed. A third alternative, which combines the two, is provided in their place. This looks at the history of the Horn in a broad spatial and integrating perspective. It shows that the current physical barriers such as the Red Sea, the Nile Valley and the cataracts of the Nile River have not always been as impenetrable as one tends to think. There is evidence that at times in the past, people from the opposite sides of these 'barriers' shared language, commerce, religion and politics. The paper also discusses the impact of ironworking in the region and the technological influence of the Horn on sub-Saharan Africa. Bibliogr., sum. in English and French.