Accepted paper:

Roman world ornaments in Iron Age Bali


Ambra Calo (Australian National University)
James Lankton (UCL Qatar)

Paper short abstract:

New compositional data for glass beads from the Roman world in Iron Age context in Bali, hitherto unknown in Island Southeast Asia, and gold ornaments of possible western origin, provide strong evidence linking the sites of Pangkung Paruk and Sembiran/Pacung to early trans-Asiatic networks.

Paper long abstract:

Centrally located along the Sunda Island maritime route between western and eastern Indonesia, the northern coast of Bali has produced secure evidence for its involvement in multiple trans-Asiatic networks across the Indian Ocean and the South China Sea between the 2nd century BCE and the 2nd century CE. In this paper we focus on new compositional evidence for Roman world glass beads and gold ornaments of possible western origin in dated context at the Iron Age sites of Sembiran/Pacung and Pangkung Paruk. The Pangkung Paruk Roman gold-glass beads constitute the largest known cluster of Roman glass in Southeast Asia. These data shed new light on the significance of Indonesia in early trans-Asiatic networks in terms of western routes and chronology.

panel P18
Ancient ornaments around the South China Sea: style, technology, provenance and circulation