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Insights into the Manufacture of Laced Watercraft through a Pollen Analysis of the Fibrous Materials from Roman-Era Laced Boats of the Upper Adriatic, Italy
- Willis, Staci
- Palynology 2017 v.41 no.4 pp. 484-492
- Stipa tenacissima, boats, grasses, manufacturing, pollen analysis, Italy, Spain
- This study seeks to understand the season and location of manufacturing of Roman-era north-western Adriatic laced vessels through an analysis of the pollen trapped inside the cordage and seam wadding used to hold these boats together. Samples were collected from three separate hull remains of this tradition of boatbuilding. Results suggest that, in most instances, the esparto grass (Stipa tenacissima) cordage was manufactured in Spain and then shipped to Italy, while the seam wadding (bast fibres) was likely processed in close proximity to the shipyard. By expanding pollen analysis, especially of seam wadding material, it may be possible to distinguish various building locations within this region of Italy in antiquity.