Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Ancient Blood Found On Sculptures From Kingdom Of Mali

Date:
December 8, 2007
Source:
American Chemical Society
Summary:
Scientists are reporting for the first time that sculptors from the fantastically wealthy ancient Empire of Mali -- once the source of almost half the world's gold -- used blood to form the beautiful patina, or coating, on their works of art. They describe development of a new, noninvasive test that accurately identifies traces of blood apparently left on ancient African artifacts used in ceremonies involving animal sacrifices.

A new, highly-sensitive analytical test was used to confirm the presence of blood in the coating of this animal-like artifact used in ancient Mali rituals.
Credit: Pascale Richardin, Center for Research and Restoration for the Museums of France

Scientists in France are reporting for the first time that sculptors from the fantastically wealthy ancient Empire of Mali -- once the source of almost half the world's gold -- used blood to form the beautiful patina, or coating, on their works of art. Pascale Richardin and colleagues describe development of a new, noninvasive test that accurately identifies traces of blood apparently left on ancient African artifacts used in ceremonies involving animal sacrifices.

Archaeologists often had reported or suspected the presence of blood on many African artifacts, the study points out. However, accurately identifying the presence of blood was difficult because of the tiny amounts of blood remaining over the ages.

The researchers describe use of three highly sensitive tests -- time-of-flight secondary ion mass spectrometry, infrared microscopy, and X-ray microfluoresence -- to identify iron-bound (the chemical fingerprint of blood) on the patina from seven Dogon and Bamana sculptures from Mali. The technique, which caused virtually no damage to priceless artworks, also is suitable for identification of blood on other ancient artifacts, the study states.

The article "Identification of Ritual Blood in African Artifacts using TOF-SIMS and Synchrotron Radiation Microspectroscopies" is scheduled for the Dec. 15 issue of ACS' Analytical Chemistry.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Chemical Society. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Chemical Society. "Ancient Blood Found On Sculptures From Kingdom Of Mali." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 8 December 2007. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071203091232.htm>.
American Chemical Society. (2007, December 8). Ancient Blood Found On Sculptures From Kingdom Of Mali. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071203091232.htm
American Chemical Society. "Ancient Blood Found On Sculptures From Kingdom Of Mali." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2007/12/071203091232.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Fossils & Ruins News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Neil Armstrong's Post-Apollo 11 Life

Neil Armstrong's Post-Apollo 11 Life

Newsy (July 19, 2014) — Neil Armstrong gained international fame after becoming the first man to walk on the moon in 1969. But what was his life like after the historic trip? Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
A Centuries' Old British Tradition Is Far from a Swan Song

A Centuries' Old British Tradition Is Far from a Swan Song

AFP (July 19, 2014) — As if it weren't enough that the Queen is the Sovereign of the UK and 15 other Commonwealth realms, she is also the owner of all Britain's unmarked swans. Duration: 02:18 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) — Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
45 Years Later, Buzz Aldrin on Walking on Moon

45 Years Later, Buzz Aldrin on Walking on Moon

AP (July 18, 2014) — Forty-five years ago Sunday, Apollo 11's Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin became the first humans to set foot on the moon. Speaking at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Aldrin described what he was thinking right before the historic walk. (July 18) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins