Coupling of SEM-EDX and Raman Spectroscopy to Investigate Painted Preparation Layers on Two Wooden Statuettes from Ptolemaic Era

Document Type : Original Article


1 Conservation Department, General Administration for the Restoration of Antiquities and Museums of East Delta, Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities, Sharkia, Egypt.

2 Conservation Department, Faculty of Archaeology, Cairo University, Giza, Egypt

3 Microbial Chemistry Department, National Research Centre, Giza, Egypt


Multi-analytical techniques combining SEM-EDX and Raman spectroscopy have been employed in this study to investigate the chemical composition of the preparation layers and pigments applied on two wooden statuettes of the goddess Isis from the Ptolemaic era preserved in Tell Basta's museum storeroom. Furthermore, light microscope was used to identify wood species in both statuettes and FTIR analysis to identify the binding media. Results proved that both statuettes were made of local wood; statuette no. 1408 was carved out of tamarisk wood, while statuette no. 2213 was made of sycamore fig. Preparation layer applied on statuette no. 1408 was predominantly composed of calcium carbonate and gypsum and the statuette no. 2213 was made with calcium carbonate. EDX coupled with Raman results indicate that the pigments used were mostly in accordance with the established Ancient Egyptian palette.


Main Subjects

Volume 66, Issue 13 - Serial Number 13
Special Issue: Applied Chemistry for Greener Life and Sustainability
December 2023
Pages 117-126
  • Receive Date: 05 January 2023
  • Revise Date: 27 February 2023
  • Accept Date: 05 March 2023