Opendata, web and dolomites


Making and wearing semi-PRECIOUS stone beads in the Near East and the Nile Valley during the Neolithic: A biographical perspective and microwear approach

Total Cost €


EC-Contrib. €






 PRECIOUS project word cloud

Explore the words cloud of the PRECIOUS project. It provides you a very rough idea of what is the project "PRECIOUS" about.

little    precious    microscopy    comparisons    neolithisation    metrology    microwear    bc    scenarios    statistically    quality    created    modalities    events    subject    tackle    scanning    east    manufacturing    ornaments    microtopographic    place    stone    prehistoric    valley    levels    organization    discovered    eastern    behaviours    cal    explored    techno    document    analysed    cultural    accidents    understand    proposes    material    csm    sense    bead    recycling    repairing    neolithic    software    semi    carnelian    ethnographic    texture    uses    communities    collection    yemen    societies    confocal    nubian    near    finishing    8th    reconstructed    technicity    body    maintenance    functions    beyond    4th    drilling    sites    beads    chronocultural    mill    individuals    social    methodology    india    sex    biological    approached    burials    technique    precision    experimental    time    data    contexts    first    age    nile    emergence    symbolic    biographies    archaeological    techniques    surface    workshops    farming    wearing    consumption    complemented    references    preforms    geochemical   

Project "PRECIOUS" data sheet

The following table provides information about the project.


Organization address
address: CALLE SERRANO 117
city: MADRID
postcode: 28006

contact info
title: n.a.
name: n.a.
surname: n.a.
function: n.a.
email: n.a.
telephone: n.a.
fax: n.a.

 Coordinator Country Spain [ES]
 Total cost 172˙932 €
 EC max contribution 172˙932 € (100%)
 Programme 1. H2020-EU.1.3.2. (Nurturing excellence by means of cross-border and cross-sector mobility)
 Code Call H2020-MSCA-IF-2018
 Funding Scheme MSCA-IF-EF-ST
 Starting year 2020
 Duration (year-month-day) from 2020-02-01   to  2022-01-31


Take a look of project's partnership.

# participants  country  role  EC contrib. [€] 


 Project objective

Beyond their symbolic functions, body ornaments offer crucial information to tackle the social organization of the past societies and to address their techno-cultural behaviours. In this sense, PRECIOUS is dedicated to the study of the first semi-precious stone beads in the Near East and the Nile Valley. The major aim is to understand the production and the consumption systems of these beads during the Neolithisation and the emergence of the farming communities (8th-4th mill. cal. BC). Beads discovered in burials from major Near Eastern and Nubian archaeological sites will be analysed through a microwear approach complemented by geochemical analyses. For the first time in the field of stone ornaments, high-precision surface texture analysis will be applied using the technique of the Confocal Scanning Microscopy (CSM) and metrology software. The “biographies” of the archaeological beads (manufacturing techniques, modalities of uses including accidents, repairing or recycling events) will be reconstructed through microtopographic analyses and comparisons with ethnographic and experimental references. A challenging experimental collection of references will be created as stone bead preforms will first document several drilling and finishing techniques, and then be subject to different scenarios of uses. The ethnographic material available are carnelian beads produced by traditional workshops in Yemen and India. To address the place of semi-precious stone beads within the Neolithic societies, the quality of production (levels of technicity) and maintenance will be assessed and statistically compared with well-defined chronocultural contexts and biological data available for the individuals wearing the ornaments (age, sex). The PRECIOUS project will greatly advance the research on prehistoric ornaments as it proposes the study of a little explored topic with a dedicated multi-approached methodology.

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The information about "PRECIOUS" are provided by the European Opendata Portal: CORDIS opendata.

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