The age of copper
It is a period of the prehistory, located between the Neolithic and the Bronze Age. The copper was one of the first metals used by man, using it primarily in its natural state because they did not know yet the mechanisms by which the mineral could melt.
It was not until the man perfected the techniques of pottery that was possible to achieve success with the experimentation of metallurgical processes. With the development of new technical achievement they start adding other metals obtaining new alloys. As first is the case of arsenic and Tin which later gave rise to the bronze.
Most manufactured items were tools type like axes, punch and double use (axes-pick, hammer or hoe), ornaments like (rings, bracelets and pins) were more for decorative use, rather than used as utilitarian piece, manufactured stone artifacts were much stronger and more durable.
As we had said previously; the ceramic techniques improvement play a very important key role in the understanding of the new techniques for metalworking also. These ceramic vases are now of excellent quality, red or wet wood, profusely decorated with horizontal bands (burned) or printed, with geometric, striped, or chess patterns, etc.
The cuneiform glass was a chalky- litho demonstration that manifested itself throughout Europe and is by its inverted bell-shaped and richly decoration why is called with this name, they have generally been found in funerary contexts.
The rope ceramic pottery with the cuneiform glass developed in Europe and is a pottery decorated with strings and is associated with the introduction of the metal in the North of Europe.
Apart from ceramics, what best defines this archaeological horizon are the funerary tributes that usually consist, almost invariably in, a ceramic glass ornaments manufactured in bone, with a characteristic V drilling buttons, pendants of clay in the form of on the rise, spirals of gold, the abundant so-called “Palmela” arrows, triangular daggers in copper and perforated plates (medium grade metamorphic rocks).
The Age of Bronze – 2500-800 B.C.
The age of bronze is characterized by important milestones in the history of mankind. At this Age occur a greater spread of agriculture and animal husbandry and the mastering of a new material – metal: copper and its alloys. At the beginning of the periods of metals occurs a greater contact between the peoples living in the vast territories.
This process of socialization and contact is especially manifest in the territory of the Eurasian steppe, where the period of paleo metal started the productive economy of cattle breeding. In many aspects it was related to the new technical advances, such as wheeled vehicles and already in the period of late bronze – with the use of a horse for riding-related.
Changes in the technological aspect stand out in comparison to the economical type generating an intensification of trade to and from long distance, a certain specialization labor and social differentiation increased in this period in which is detected a clear proliferation of offices and some craft specialization.
Elaborate objects for personal use or domestic porpoise also marked the difference in the social aspect in which the wealthy had access to more elaborate and ornate objects and this differences are extends also to the funeral element, the weapons they can reach, and general aspects of urban life.
Not in all regions was the case that way; for example in America metallurgy does not seem to have socio-economic implications was only more in the technical aspect.
The age of bronze art has some specific characteristics. Becomes more diverse and spreads widely geographically. The petro glyphs (rock paintings), paint on smaller objects, sculptures and steles, make frequent use of ornament and artistic images for decoration of tools and household goods.
In the art of this period is to highlight the fact that in each region changes is show in the use of the metal because each region had a particular characteristic.
The Iron Age 2000 and 1500 BC
This is an Historical period during which the iron replaced bronze as the material of manufacture of instruments and weapons.
Iron seems to have been widely used for the first time by the Hittites in the Middle Orient region and spread from there to Europe, South Asia and North Africa.
In Europe the first objects were obtained by hammering, is not a sure Knowles if they only melt down them or added carbon too; aspects that was already known to the Hittites.
The Iron Age is the last period of prehistory prior to the beginning of the story with the invention of writing. The era of the iron was developed in the first Millennium before Christ in the Iberian Peninsula and is the final stage of the age of metals.
The biggest advantage of the iron on the bronze lay in the fact that the ore to extract the mineral were much more abundant and therefore more economical compared to the bronze.
It wasn’t necessary any alloy and constituted an admirable material for the manufacture of saws, axes, adzes and nails. It was, however, much more difficult to work and never managed to get a temperature sufficiently high during prehistoric times to melt iron in mold, except in China.
The material was simply heated in an oven; separating iron from slag; reheat the iron turned on a single block, and, finally, working the metal through the use of the hammer to the required shape.
As throughout the process differed radically from the manufacture of copper or bronze objects, it is not surprising that the iron working was not a direct evolution of the work of the bronze that was used mainly for items of personal adornment, such as pins or mirrors.
The iron fortress characteristics were used more for tools and weapons. The gold and silver continued to be prestigious materials, employees to do, for example, the torques (heavy bracelets worn by warriors Celts).
The Military technology designed to take advantage of the use of iron was originated in Assyria; the trade of iron between Assyria and the independent city of Troy was already well established at that time, and the secret of his production was jealously guarded by the Assyrians.
The Celts peoples in Europe start using iron for tools and weapons and this aspect drive the development of the culture; due to the possibility that these provide to resolves more accurately the problems of the daily life. This factor provides them with a better uses of the time that they don’t have to spend on tasks obtaining also better result so they can then develop the artistic part.
The use of metal provide a better result also in the rockwork, the Nordic petro glyphs are an example of the importance that the culture is gathering and these continue been developing in the next historical periods.
Therefore the architecture used in the walls that protect the city already has watchtowers large necropolis and burial.
In central Europe for example from the thirteenth century BC began to spread the burial custom of the incineration, with the subsequent deposit of ashes in ceramic urns this custom had been generalized and used for many others culture along the history arriving to this days.