Lead isotope ratios for Mediterranean ores

This page contains links to a database of lead isotope ratios for ores collected from around the Mediterranean. The database was compiled from papers published between 1967 and 1997. The data is presented in a number of different formats.

The ores have been placed in groups corresponding to countries or important regions; in the spreadsheet files these appear on different sheets, in the HTML documents they are on different pages.

All samples' isotope values are given to the same number of decimal places as they were first published with. In most papers the ratios 208Pb/206Pb, 207Pb/206Pb and 206Pb/204Pb were given. The ratios 208Pb/204Pb and 207Pb/204Pb shown have been calculated from the other values.

With the publication of 'definitive' lists by the Isotrace Laboratory, Oxford in Archaeometry (refs. 55, 63 and 64) some old analyses from this lab have been deemed inadequate. Older samples from this laboratory for areas covered by the 'definitive' lists have been removed from the edited database.

The edited database

Some samples were clearly reananlysed and republished over the period covered by this database. The data pages linked from this page have been edited: all repeated samples and samples deemed by their laboratory to be indequate are removed; all samples analysed before 1976 are removed because of the much poorer precision of measurement before that time; and all samples which only have two isotope ratios given are removed. In a few cases two measurements are given for samples that appear to be the same. This is done if the two measurements were carried out by different laboratories or if the measurements are clearly repeats made at the same time to indicate variability of the sample or precision of the measurements.

The full, unedited, database is presented as a OpenDocumentFormat spreadsheet format below, as is a copy of the edited database.

HTML files

Data from different regions


A list of all the papers used to compile this database. All the data in the other files is referenced by a link to this file.

OpenDocument Format spreadsheet files

These can be read by a variety of spreadsheet programs including LibreOffice

Edited data set
Full data set

Text files

Both the full and edited data sets are available as tab-separated text files. The references and notes are in separate files.

Edited data set
Notes and references for the edited data set
Full data set
Notes and references for the full data set