HomePhilippine Journal of Material Science and Nanotechnologyvol. 5 no. 2 (2019)

Archaeomaterial Characterization of Historical-Cultural Pottery from el Noble Villa de Pila (Laguna, Philippines)

Aniano N. Asor Jr. | Jan-Michael C. Cayme | Bubbles Beverly N. Asor



Existing studies often treat pottery as a determinant of sociocultural integrity and technical proficiency. It is assumed that the aesthetic design, ceramic style and clay contour of pottery are coherent to material culture definition. As an illustration, Philippine pottery artefacts reflect the coming together of sociocultural, material and technical components. Philippine pottery artefacts were evidenced in different diggings in Pila, Laguna since 1967. Identities of the Philippine artefacts dated from the 12th to the 15th centuries from the Chinese merchants using the Manila-Laguna Bay trading route. From one of the diggings in a private property in Baranggay Pinagbayanan, Pila (Laguna), random samples were gathered, verified and chemically analyze as representatives. Integrated complementary-parallel study (cultural-historical profiling and chemical characterization) on the pottery are used but distinct on the basis of approaches. Profile of the historical pottery from Pila, Laguna was interpreted using secondary source data to organize information. The analytical techniques used in this study were Fourier Transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and X-ray fluorescence (XRF). The analytical result of sample fragment PPL1, PPL2 and PPL3 were silicon: 64.38 %, 52.07 % and 66.34 % as well as aluminum: 17.76 %, 17.14 % and 16.82 % as major components respectively. Fluxes used were iron: 5.26 %, 18.04 % and 4.65 %, calcium: 1.83 %, 4.64 % and 1.25 % as well as potassium: 8.35%, 2.76 % and 9.30 % respectively. There were elemental traces used as colorants namely: iridium (Ir), manganese (Mn), titanium (Ti), strontium (Sr), lead (Pb) and zinc (Zn). IR spectroscopy of the pottery samples showed approximate peaks assigned to quartz, alumina, calcite, hematite and magnetite.