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  • Knossos Reconstruction
    Crete, Greece

  • Master Seal Restoration
    Chania, Crete, Greece

  • Minoan Gold Ring
    Crete, Greece

  • Mt. Pinatubo Eruption
    Luzon, Phillipines
    1991

  • Dolphins Fresco
    Knossos, Crete, Greece

  • Minoan Gold Seal
    Crete, Greece

  • Feathered Prince Fresco
    Knossos, Crete, Greece

  • Golden Ibex
    Akrotiri, Santorini, Greece

  • Bull Leaping Fresco
    Knossos, Crete, Greece

  • Boxing Boys Fresco
    Akrotiri, Santorini, Greece

  • Antelope Fresco
    Akrotiri, Santorini, Greece

  • Sea Daffodils Fresco
    Akrotiri, Santorini, Greece




The Cento Camerelle Mines
of Tuscany:
A Major Bronze Age
Source of Tin


Campigiliese, Tuscany, Italy View from Southwest

Some of you may know of my interest in the availability of tin during the Bronze Age from the GIS publication "The Distribution of Tin (Cassiterite): Mediterranean Bronze Age" I published online in 2013 based extensively on the world's largest public mineralogical database - Mindat.org. From my research on the Nuraghic Sardinians, I've been looking for deposits of Cassiterite or Stannite for some years now that could explain their abundant production of Bronze objects in the 2nd Millenium BC. Given there are ten locations in Sardinia with mineralizations of Cassiterite I suspected, at least, one of these was possibly a useful source of Bronze Age tin that had been thoroughly exhausted and then later destroyed leaving little or no evidence. This still may be true.

But, after finding nothing beyond mineralizations on Sardinia I recently widened my search following the trail of Cassiterite to Tuscany on the Italian mainland. As my investigation took me on the road to the mines of Monte Valerio I discovered the following works of the Italian scholar Auro Pampaloni:

Pampaloni, 2017, Lo stagno del Campigliese: 40 secoli di uso (Original Italian).

Pampaloni, 2017, The tin of Campigliese: 40 centuries of usage (English Translation).


Google Earth Slideshow

The following images comprise a Google Earth "slideshow" for mining sites and geographical features mentioned in the above publication:



Central Mediterranean




Sardinia




Campigliese Tuscany




Campo alle Buche




Monte Valerio




Cento Camerelle




Cento Camerelle Overhead View



Animated Google Earth Guided Tour:
The Bronze Age Cassiterite Mines of Tuscany

If you don't already have the "free" version of Google Earth Pro setup on your computer you will need to download it here:

Download Google Earth Pro

With Google Earth Pro downloaded, installed, and working properly on your computer you are now ready to simply open the Animated Slideshow KMZ file:

Open the Animated Cento Camerelle Cassiterite Mines Tour


Lead Isotopes Analysis: possible risks and probable errors

The following publication on Lead Isotopes Analysis is tightly coupled with the above paper on Campigliese tin.

Pampaloni, 2017, Lead Isotopes Analysis: possibili rischi e probabili errori (Original Italian).

Pampaloni, 2017, Lead Isotopes Analysis: possible risks and probable errors (English Translation).

I think anyone interested in a much clearer picture of the supply of tin in the greater Mediterranean during the Bronze Age will find this of great interest.



W. Sheppard Baird

September 20, 2017