Archaeological Chemistry, a new edition of a classic book

The Royal Society of Chemistry has now published a third edition of ‘Archaeological Chemistry’ co-written by FLAME’s Mark Pollard. The book has been updated to encompass the latest developments in the field including a new chapter on proteomics. This book is an ideal starting place for understanding the role of chemistry in Archaeology and how it has enabled archaeologists to determine the origin of and learn more about organic and inorganic finds.


The world has changed yet again since the preface to the second edition was written in 2007, and immeasurably so since 1995. Analytical instrumentation continues to improve in terms of micro-sampling, multi-elemental sensitivity, rapidity of throughput, and availability. Mass spectrometry, in all its forms, has been revolutionized over the last ten years. The mantra now, for better or worse, is ‘non-destructive’ and ‘portable’, and the current generation of instruments, including some equipment with multi-technique capability can often be taken to the object, rather than vice versa. Analytical capability in the field analysis of biomolecular residues in archaeological material in particular has changed beyond all recognition, especially for ancient DNA and palaeoproteomics.’

From the preface to the third edition


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Archaeological Chemistry, a new edition of a classic book