The influence of pesticides on the corrosion of a Roman bowl excavated in Kent, UK.
Carvalho LDC., Goodburn-Brown D., McCullagh JSO., Pollard AM.
We analysed corrosion from a copper bowl dating from the Roman period (43-410 AD) found in a farm in Kent, UK. Despite its relatively good condition, the interior and exterior surface of the object had areas of deterioration containing green and brown-coloured corrosion which were sampled for characterization by a multi-analytical protocol. Basic copper chlorides atacamite and paratacamite were identified in the context of mineral phases along with chlorobenzenes in the green corrosion. Chlorobenzenes are common soil contaminants in rural areas from the use of pesticides, many of which were banned more than 50 years ago. Here we show that their presence is associated with accelerated corrosion, and this provides a threat to the preservation of archaeological metal objects in the ground.