Walter Prochaska

Walter Prochaska
Austrian Academy of Sciences (OeAW) | ÖAW · Austrian Archaeological Institute – OeAI

PhD
The current activity is summarized on: https://www.walter-prochaska.at/

About

244
Publications
50,366
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Introduction
Walter Prochaska currently works at the Austrian Archaeologial Institute of the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna. Walter does research in Petrology, Mineralogy and Geochemistry. Current projects are on 'Provenance analysis of ancient marbles'.
Additional affiliations
October 2020 - April 2021
Austrian Academy of Sciences (OeAW)
Position
  • Professor
Description
  • 1974 to 1977 Department of geology, University of Vienna; 1977 to 1980 Department of Mineralogy and Petrology, University of Vienna. 4.7.1980 PhD thesis: Kontaktmetamorphose am Rieserferner Tonalit in Ost- und Südtirol. 1.8.1981 Assistant Professor at the Department of Geosciences, Mining University, Leoben, Austria. 1.5.1989 to 2020 Associate Professor at the Department of Geosciences, University of Leoben, Leoben, Austria.

Publications

Publications (244)
Article
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This paper presents the research conducted on the origin of the white marble architecture of the basilica of Ascalon (Israel). The basilica is located in the civic centre of the Roman city of Ascalon and it is one of the relatively few known monumental buildings of Roman Palestine. The various construction phases of the basilica are dated from the...
Article
In the Latimojong Metamorphic Complex of Sulawesi, Indonesia, magmatic minerals are occasionally preserved in metabasites and have been overprinted by a metamorphic assemblage of chlorite-actinolite-pumpellyite. The relict of magmatic minerals preserved within metamorphic rocks are used as a potential discriminant for magma chemistry and tectonic p...
Conference Paper
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Marble is one of the most widespread materials used by man from prehistory until today. This research focuses on the analysis of Naxos marble. A brief review of research related to the island of Naxos is reported. The main objectives of this paper highlight the importance of marble studies, and a brief account of the techniques used in the research...
Article
Numerical data on scientific analytical characteristics of the Alpine marbles are presented in this paper in order to provide a database for future use when investigating artefacts of that region. The Alpine marbles used already in Roman times can be subdivided into two major groups. Those of the first group, bound to the “Koralpe-Wölz-System”, are...
Article
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The hinterland of the metropolis of Ephesos belonged to the most important quarrying region for white marbles in the ancient world. Here, two main groups can be differentiated, which have been divided into Ephesos I and II based on petrographic-geochemical criteria. In addition to the two large groups of Ephesian marble, Ephesos I and II, there are...
Article
The systematic study of the architectural decoration of Lepcis Magna highlighted the unexpected use of a third marble type, in addition to Proconnesos and Pentelic, that has not been recognised to date: Lesbos marble used for medium-sized architectural elements, column bases and capitals, employed in almost all the buildings of the city. This pheno...
Conference Paper
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The long years of archaeological investigations at Galerius’ retreat palace of Felix Romuliana have yielded 784 fragments of opus sectile floor and wall revetment. Moreover, the imprints left by tiles in the mortar have allowed for a general reconstruction of the geometric patterns decorating the floors in the “basilica” and the rooms of the stibad...
Conference Paper
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Abstract The Viennese Amazon sarcophagus is one of the most important masterpieces of the Late Classical period from Cyprus. Found in 1557, the sarcophagus came to Vienna via detours in the 17th century and is now on display in the Collection of Greek and Roman Antiquities of the Kunsthistorisches Museum. The depiction of an amazonomachy follows cl...
Article
The present paper offers a solution of the latent problems regarding the discrimination of the marbles from Prokonnesos, Heraklea/Miletos, Paros, and Thasos. As the conventional approaches primarily rest on basic petrographic characteristics and stable isotope results, they do not sufficiently discriminate between these varieties of marbles. Theref...
Chapter
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Investigation of the chemical characteristics of a set of Roman Quarries in southern Noricum
Article
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The material analysis has revealed clearly that the relief Kunsthistorisches Museum I 1108 was produced from Ephesos II marble, and constitutes a homogenous group with additional pieces that were found at the site. It is therefore highly likely that the Vienna example also originates from Ephesos, even if the history of its acquisition provides no...
Article
Abstract: Donato Attanasio – Matthias Bruno – Walter Prochaska, The Marbles of Roman Portraits. New Data on the Marble Provenance of 261 Imperial and Private Urban Portraits Dating from the Mid 1st Century B.C. to the Early 6th Century A.D. The marble provenance of 261 Roman portraits (167 imperial, 94 private) mostly of urban production and dating...
Article
Referring to an article recently published by JAS Reports (Brilli et al., 2018, 19, 625-642) this communication raises doubts and poses questions concerning the identity and origin of the materials used for the analyses and the reliability of the results that are presented. Very different analytical values, in fact, were already reported for severa...
Conference Paper
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Within the Innovation-Fund-Project “Provenance Matters A multi-proxy Approach for the Determination of White Marbles in the Roman East” 28 white marble and limestone artefacts from the so-called “Sanctuary of the Nymphs and Aphrodite” near to the Bulgarian village of Kasnakovo (Dimitrovgrad Municipality) have been analyzed.
Chapter
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Marble provenance of architectural elements and a Mercurius sculpture found in the temple district Frauenberg, Leibnitz, Austria
Conference Paper
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During a site survey in 2012 an unknown marble quarry was discovered near the ancient city of Euromos (Milas), where a very typical grey veined stepped marble was extracted. A systematic archaeological investigation of the quarry site was undertaken and extensive sampling was carried out for archaeometric analyses (isotopes, EPR, MGS) in order to o...
Conference Paper
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This paper is focused on two major public monuments of the Domitianic and Trajanic periods from Puteoli (modern Pozzuoli) on the Bay of Naples. There are no architectural traces of these monuments in Pozzuoli today and their specific ancient locations are not known. Our knowledge of them, therefore, is based on two joining marble panels, one in the...
Conference Paper
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The present study deals with the decoration patterns, the craftsmen and the different marbles used in the porticoes of the Agora of Iasos. The recent discovery of a large white marble quarry district at Milas and a gray banded one at Euromos has suggested that previous hypotheses on the origin of marbles used in the Iasos Agora must be verified. Fo...
Conference Paper
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Systematic investigations of imperial portraits from the first century AD up to late antiquity revealed a dramatic change in the portrait marbles starting approximately in Trajanic times. By the beginning of the 2nd century a so far unknown marble of exceptional quality suddenly arrived in Rome and became the portrait marble par excellence, which h...
Conference Paper
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The marble provenance of 163 Roman Imperial portraits, stretching approximately over 500 years, has been established with the purpose of obtaining quantitative, diachronic data on the use of sculptural marbles in Roman times. The overall result shows that Göktepe was the most widely used variety (45%) followed at a great distance by the Parian lych...
Conference Paper
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The sculptures of Lepcis Magna represent one of the richest and most important collections of ancient Tripolitania (Libya). Many of the statues were discovered during the excavations carried out in the first half of the 20th century. Archaeometric analysis on the white marble provenance was conducted on a selection of 36 statues kept in the storero...
Article
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The Imperial "retreat palace" Felix Romuliana is predominantly constructed of local and regional rocks. The commonest building material is hornblende andesite available on site and used most extensively for the second fortification. The dimension stones for different parts of the fortifications, for the palace proper and the two temples are of loca...
Article
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An efficient and non-destructive method to classify white marble artifacts by using a hand-held, portable XRF analyzer (pXRF) is here reported. The identification is based on the uniquely high strontium content of this marble and has been verified by testing 32 artifacts, most of which had already been provenanced, using conventional micro-destruct...
Article
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35 marble inscriptions from the Hellenistic and Roman periods, deriving from the Sanctuary of Apollo Hylates on Cyprus, form the focus of the study; their material was investigated by means of petrographic and geochemical analytic techniques to identify their place of origin. Due to the complete absence of any local marble supplies on the island, t...
Article
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The gold deposits within the Latimojong Metamorphic Complex of Sulawesi, Indonesia, including Awak Mas and Salu Bulo, are estimated to host 50 tonnes Au with an average grade of 1.41 g/t. They are located within the metamorphic basement consisting of pumpellyite- to greenschist-facies metasedimentary and metavolcanic rocks, where gold precipitated...
Article
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From September 12-21, the main excursion of the geologists of the Montanuniversität Leoben took place in Lapland, northern Finland & Sweden. Thanks to the organisation of Prof. Melcher and Prof. Prochaska and especially with the support of Dr. Kari Niiranen (LKAB) the excursion covered interesting spots for economic geologists and mineralogists ali...
Article
Isotopic, EPR and petrographic studies aimed at establishing the provenance of sculptural bigio antico are reported, including 18 possible quarry sites and 21 ancient sculptures. The results demonstrate that the Belevi quarry, north-east of Ephesos, above the more famous white marble quarry, was the major source of this marble. Nineteen artefacts b...
Article
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Oil is produced in the Austrian sector of the Alpine Foreland Basin from Eocene and Cenomanian reservoirs. Apart from petroleum, the basin hosts a significant geothermal potential, which is based on the regional flow of meteoric water through Malmian (Upper Jurassic) carbonate rocks. Oils are predominantly composed of n -alkanes, while some samples...
Data
The gold deposits in the Latimojong Metamorphic complex are mainly hosted by metasedimentary rocks. The conditions of ore formation are estimated from fluid inclusion microthermometry, crushleach analyses on bulk samples and Raman spectroscopy on carbonaceous materials. The fluid inclusion assemblages are dominated by moderately saline H2O-rich flu...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
The gold deposits in the Latimojong Metamorphic complex are mainly hosted by metasedimentary rocks. The conditions of ore formation are estimated from fluid inclusion microthermometry, crushleach analyses on bulk samples and Raman spectroscopy on carbonaceous materials. The fluid inclusion assemblages are dominated by moderately saline H2O-rich flu...
Article
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To date, there have been few detailed studies regarding the impact of mining and metallogenic activities on solid fractions in the Azzaba mercurial district (northeast Algeria) despite its importance and global similarity with large Hg mines. To assess the degree, distribution, and sources of pollution, a physical inventory of apparent pollution wa...
Article
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A consanguineous origin of the sparry siderite and magnesite mineralizations of the Eastern Alps has been repeatedly discussed in the past, often without the back-up of sound scientific arguments. Here, it is shown that the characteristics of these mineralizations including structures, fluid parameters, timing etc. are amazingly similar suggesting...
Article
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The Ljubija ore deposits are the loci typici of siderite-barite-polysulphide deposits within the Inner Dinarides, Gemerides and Eastern Alps. Numerous sites of ore outcrops, smaller or larger ore bodies of mineralization, consisting of Fe carbonates, sulphides, barite and fluorite are scattered over an area of 150 square km. The half billion tons o...
Article
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From the 6 th century BC to Byzantine times, the ancient city of Limyra was an important urban center of the Lycian territory at the southwestern coastal region of Asia Minor. Archaeological, geological, hydrochemical and surface elevation data, as well as 14 C age dating constrain a paleo-hydrogeological model, explaining the submergence of the ci...
Article
Abstract 100 marble artefacts, collected in the Musèe Saint-Raymond at Toulouse and originating from the Roman villa of Chiragan have been investigated by isotopic analysis, chemical analysis of trace metals, EPR spectroscopy and grain size measurements. The provenance has been established by statistical analysis and comparison with a database of q...
Article
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The excavations at the site of Lepcis Magna have yielded a remarkable number of sculptures, which make it as a whole one of the most representative samples from North Africa. This paper presents the results of an archaeometric analysis on the provenance of the white marble conducted on a selection of 36 statues kept in Lepcis Magna: 31 in the Old M...
Chapter
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Institut für Kulturgeschichte der Antike der ÖAW für die Ermöglichung der Probennahme und die Unterstützung bei den Feldarbeiten. 1738 s. die allgemeinen Informationen zum Projekt. 1739 lepsius führte die ersten umfangreichen petrografischen Studien an klassischen Marmoren mittels petrografischer Methoden durch, lepsius 1891, 1-135. 1740 Die erste...
Conference Paper
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In this work the material-specific parameters of finegrained dolomitic marbles from 6 different locations are presented. The corresponding sites are Sivec in Macedonia, Drama in Greece, Topolovgrad in eastern Bulgaria and Ephesos, Prokonnesos, and Karacasu in Turkey. All marbles are very pure and lack significant trace minerals. They exhibit a very...
Article
Seventeen marble samples drawn from the Scylla, Polyphemos, and Pasquino Groups, the Theft of the Palladium statue group, and the Ganymede statue discovered at Sperlonga in 1957 were investigated scientifically and proved to be all Docimium marble from the quarries of İscehisar near Afyon. New quarry data now available for the lithos lartios of Rho...
Article
A database of the ancient marbles of Göktepe near Aphrodisias is reported, and includes 160 white, black and bichrome samples from 13 quarries and two waste deposits. The quarries are grouped into four districts. Districts 1 and 2, to the north, produced exclusively black or dark grey marbles (nero antico). Districts 3 and 4 produced white statuary...
Article
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Shear zones are zones of enhanced fluid flow and may act as pathways for mineralizing fluids. The occurrence of talc may be related to such shear zones. Magnesite and talc deposits in the Eastern Greywacke zone were investigated to understand the role of faults to the occurrence of talc. The deposits Veitsch, Wald am Schober and Lassing are of Mg c...
Article
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The cenotaph in Limyra was built for Gaius Caesar, the grandson and designated successor of Augustus, who died here in 4 A.D. while returning from a mission in Armenia. The remains of the monument today consist basically of the solid core of the building (made of opus caementitium) and a few elements of the marble frieze and other parts of decorati...
Conference Paper
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To safely define the origin of ancient white marbles of artefacts one single method as for instance the analysis of the stable isotopes is usually not sufficient for a safe discrimination. A multimethod approach including chemical analysis and the analysis of microinclusions in the marbles substantially improve the discrimination of macroscopically...
Conference Paper
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The discovery of the Aphrodisias quarries at Göktepe, which produced white and black statuary marble qualities, has provided a new and unexpected contribution to the knowledge of the marble used in ancient Roman times. The use of these two varieties is now shown to be much more widespread than expected and is attested from the mid of the first cent...
Article
Abstract: The Esquiline sculptures, provisionally identified as marbles from Göktepe near Aphrodisias, have been reexamined with the aid of new analyses and new samples. Additional research has been carried out at Göktepe, leading to the discovery of marbles near and within the ancient site (district 2, quarry C) that closely reproduce the properti...
Article
A life-size whitish marble statue of a “Virgin with Child” has been recently rediscovered in the St. Rosario church located in Ottaviano, a small town near Naples (southern Italy). This artwork shows stylistic features of the Tuscan-Roman school of the 16th century, and is framed in an intriguing historical context. Historical documents testify tha...
Conference Paper
Strongly silicified volcano-sedimentary sequences are a common feature in Archaean greenstone belts. In the Onverwacht Group in the Barberton Greenstone Belt, South Africa, silification has been interpreted as a result of fluid circulation in shallow subseafloor convection cells (Hofmann & Harris, 2008). This study uses fluid inclusion microthermom...