Materials In Today's World

Copper (Chalcolithic) and Bronze Ages


In the Neolithic Age, which was the period at the end of the Stone Age, the Egyptians were experiencing increasing population along with extensive food production capabilities, several communities in similar stages of development, and an extensive trade network with other civilizations. As the Egyptians entered the Copper and Bronze Ages, their technological advancements in gold, copper, and bronze processing were aided by their access to key natural resources. The figure below from the British Museum shows known natural resources of ancient Egypt.

Ancient Egypt's natural resources including: limestone, basalt, alabaster, carnelian, natron, gold, granite, copper, tin, and malachite.
Natural resources of ancient Egypt.
Credit: The British Museum

In the following pages, we will discuss gold, copper, and bronze processing as developed by the Egyptians.