Statistical Analysis of Flint Trace Element Data
Staringia , Volume 3 - Issue 1 p. 46- 47
The object of the technique is to establish if flint from different prehistoric mine sites could be separated on the basis of the occurrence of certain trace elements, and to use this data, to enable artifacts of unknown provenance to be classified with a source with the least likelihood of error. The methods of chemical analysis and subsequent data analysis and the results, have been published earlier (Sieveking, et.al. 1970, 1972), on the basis of the evidence available it was suggested that the method would be satisfactory in the majority of cases. Limitations to the approach were pointed out, and in particular it was noted that if more than the original mine sites were to be used, then an alternative method of data analysis should be used. Such an alternative, Pattern Recognition, has already been applied to the problem by Dutch workens (de Bruin et.al., 1972). This contribution briefly discusses the application of this method to the British data. We also consider further geological and archaeogical data which has recently become available.
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