Finds in clay of Stone Age pottery

One of the overriding aims of archaeometric analyses on pottery is to gain knowledge about the raw materials used to make the vessels. For this purpose, thin sections of the sherds are particularly suitable giving insights into the mineralogical composition of the clays. As part of the DFG project Pottery Traditions, extensive microscopic thin-section investigations of Stone Age pottery are currently being carried out. There are primarily minerals and larger rock fragments found as inclusions in the clays. However, there are also non-mineral components in the raw materials, which can also be identified in thin sections. These mainly include residues of plant material, but even smallest fragments of bone and microfossils can be discovered in the clays of Stone Age pottery.