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  • Telephotograph by Giorgio Roster depicting the Volterraio Castle, Elba Island, September 1893, Roster Fund, Institute and Museum of the History of Science, Florence.zoom in altra finestra
  • Telephotograph by Giorgio Roster depicting the Volterraio Castle, Elba Island, 1892 ca., Roster Fund, Institute and Museum of the History of Science, Florence.zoom in altra finestra

Parco Sperimentale di Metallurgia Antica [Experimental Park of Ancient Metallurgy]

The First Experimental Park of Ancient Metallurgy was inaugurated in May 1996 in the locality of Molinaccio, thanks to the efforts of the Naturalist Archaeological Group of Elba Island. Archaeological finds provided the bases for the reconstruction of several Etruscan-type furnaces for the reduction of hematite and the production of bloom (the "iron sponge" often cited by the ancients), a block of soft iron obtained at high temperatures (1300C), made possible by stoking the furnaces at length.

At periodic demonstrations, the visitor can immerse himself in the noisy, colourful atmosphere of an ancient smelting furnace where, thanks to the sweat and fatigue of volunteers, he will become acquainted with the complex and delicate work of iron production in antiquity. Thanks precisely to parks like this, deservedly inserted in the databank of the Unesco Planet Society in the ambit of the project, "The World’s Still in the Making", it is possible to recover and disseminate an inedited aspect of ancient culture otherwise condemned to oblivion.

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Texts by Elena Fani

English translation by Victor Beard

Last update 12/mar/2008