Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences

, Volume 11, Issue 4, pp 1431–1441 | Cite as

Plant ash glass from first century CE Dibba, U.A.E

  • Alicia Van Ham-MeertEmail author
  • Philippe Claeys
  • Sabah Jasim
  • Bruno Overlaet
  • Eisa Yousif
  • Patrick Degryse
Original Paper


This paper presents the chemical and isotopic analyses of glass from the first century CE excavated in Dibba (United Arab Emirates). The elemental composition was determined using inductively coupled plasma-optical emission spectrometry (ICP-OES) and micro-X-ray fluorescence (μXRF), as well as the isotopic composition using laser ablation-multi collector-ICP-mass spectrometry (LA-MC-ICP-MS) for Sr and solution MC-ICP-MS for Nd. This study revealed the unique elemental and isotopic composition of this material, matching the local geology and providing a strong argument for a previously unknown production site, possibly local, for this material. Two glass hues are observed in the assemblage (green and amber); both have the same chemical composition. The colour difference is due to differences in the oxidation state of the chromophores whether or not purposefully is unclear. The production of blown glass vessels shows a technology, not yet evidenced before, for this period in this region.


U.A.E. Plant ash glass Sr isotopes 



The authors are thankful to the Emirate of Sharjah for providing the samples for analysis. The authors are also thankful for the helpful comments of the reviewers which have contributed to the coherence and thoroughness of the paper.

Funding information

Alicia Van Ham-Meert is funded on a project from the Flemish research fund (FWO) with number G.0C43.15. Philippe Claeys is thankful to Hercules for funding the purchase of the μ-XRF.

Supplementary material

12520_2018_611_MOESM1_ESM.xlsx (39 kb)
ESM 1 (XLSX 39.3 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Earth and Environmental Science, Division of GeologyKU LeuvenHeverleeBelgium
  2. 2.Analytical, Environmental and Geo-ChemistryVUBBrusselsBelgium
  3. 3.Sharjah Archaeology AuthoritySharjahUnited Arab Emirates
  4. 4.Ancient Near East and Iran, Royal Museums of Art and HistoryBrusselsBelgium
  5. 5.Faculty of Archaeology, Archaeological SciencesUniversiteit LeidenLeidenNetherlands

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