Study of Silver Used in Peruvian Viceroyalty Objects through Chemical Analysis

Anibal Alviz-Meza, Andrés De Leo, José Barandiaran-Gamarra, Edwin Torres-Salazar, Juan Orozco-Agamez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


The exploitation of metals such as silver and copper has been the basis of the economic and socio-cultural development of multiple Andean societies such as Peru. Vestiges of the main centers of colonial metallurgy are known for their exhibition at various points of the Andean baroque route. However, exist doubts about the constituent minerals that these objects may drag. A record of trace metals emitted during smelting operations are useful to estimate their quality and provenance. In this approach, we found viceroyalty silver objects with only copper as a tracer metal, in Ag/Cu ratios from 9 to 34.85. The crystalline system of both metals was found to be cubic in one object while other objects indicated amorphous phases for both elements. This type of research has the potential to be extended with other characterization techniques such as lead isotopic analysis, leading to the determination of the provenance of pieces today ubicated at Cusco.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)267-272
Number of pages6
JournalChemical Engineering Transactions
StatePublished - 2023


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