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The long history of lost wax casting

Over five thousand years of art and craftsmanship


The origins of lost wax or investment casting, often known as cire perdue, and still the most accurate and reliable means of reproducing complex shapes in gold or other metals with all the fine detail of an original pattern, go back to the very first civilisations in the Near East and to a combination of primitive art, religion and metallurgy. The historical development of the process and its several variations are reviewed here as well as its transmission to other parts of the world.


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Hunt, L.B. The long history of lost wax casting. Gold Bull 13, 63–79 (1980).

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  • Eighth Century
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