Silver wire, 1550 BC.
© Science Museum / Science & Society Picture Library
A sample of silver wire from Tel el Amarna, the XVIIIth Dynasty of ancient Egypt. The city of Amarna was built during, and abandoned after, the reign of the pharaoh Akhenaten, who imposed a new monotheistic sun-worshipping religion on Egypt. This piece is important since it is likely that the source of its ore was either the Near East or Laurion in Mycenaean Greece.