D-A-CH-Project: Prehistoric copper production in the Eastern and Central Alps - technical, social and economic dynamics in space and time


Funded by: Der Wissenschaftsfonds FWF                       FWF Logo

                     Deutsche Forschungsgemeinschaft DFG    DFG Logo

                     Schweizerischer Nationalfonds SNF            SNF Logo

Duration: 2015 - 2018


7_gratllspitz3-2_kleinThe eastern and central Alpine copper economy played a major role in the metal supply of central Europe during the Bronze Age and Early Iron Age. In that period, the Alpine economy changed considerably as mining and metal production transformed large parts of the landscape from agrarian and remote areas into early industrialized regions. Three of the most important copper producers have been selected for this joint research project: (1) the Schwaz/Brixlegg district in North Tyrol, Austria, (2) the Mitterberg district in Salzburg, Austria and (3) the Oberhalbstein district in Grisons, Switzerland. In all of these mining districts Bronze Age to Early Iron Age relics of copper ore mining and/or metallurgy are widespread and the archaeological investigation of a considerable number of sites is highly advanced. The state of research represents an excellent base for a supra-regional study dealing with the dynamics of prehistoric large-scale metal production in the three key-areas and beyond.

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