Skip to content

Dr. Benjamin Stern,
Assistant Professor

Information about Dr. Benjamin Stern at the University of Bradford.

School of Archaeological & Forensic Sci
(Faculty of Life Sciences)
+44 1274 236054
Photo of Dr. Benjamin Stern


Ben is currently a Lecturer in Archaeological Sciences.Ben’s role is divided between Archaeology, Chemistry and the Analytical Centre.


Bens research falls at the interface between analytical chemistry and archaeology.He is interested in the identification of the ‘archaeologically invisible’ by the correct application of analytical techniques. Some techniques are now fairly routine (such as Gas Chromatography - Mass Spectrometry (GC, GC-MS), Inductively Coupled Plasma - Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) and stable light isotopic ratios (Isotope Ratio-MS)), although these techniques may have not been applied to novel materials. Some are new (e.g. High Performance Liquid Chromatography – Mass Spectrometry, HPLC-MS), but all require careful application due to problems of small sample size, contamination, complex mixtures, degradation and the reliability of the biomarker approach.Further details and some case studies.Archaeologically the aims are to find direct molecular, trace element and isotopic evidence for the identification and use of archaeological materials including ceramic vessels, traded goods and soils (in combination with conventional archaeological evidence). Related areas of interest include the analysis of modern natural products their degradation and preservation.


There are 41 publications involving or that are attributed to Dr. Benjamin Stern.

Peer Reviewed Journal

Dr. Benjamin Stern has 41 publication(s) listed under peer reviewed journal.
Title Year Publication name Journal Volume Pages Authors Editors ISSN Publisher DOI Location
Compositional variation in aged and heated Pistacia resin found in Late Bronze Age Canaanite amphorae and bowls from Amarna, Egypt 2003 Heron, Carl P.; Corr, L.; Serpico, M.; Stern, Ben; Bourriou, J.
Stable isotope and DNA evidence for ritual sequences in Inca child sacrifice 2007 Wilson, Andrew S.; Ceruti, M.C.; Chavez, J.A.; Taylor, Timothy F.; Stern, Ben
Characterization of paint and varnish on a medieval Coptic-Byzantine icon: Novel usage of dammar resin? 2009 SPECTROCHIMICA ACTA PART A: MOLECULAR & BIOMOLECULAR SPECTROSCOPY 73 Abdel-Ghani, Mona H.; Edwards, Howell G.M.; Stern, Ben; Janaway, Robert C. 10.1016/j.saa.2008.10.050
From Susa to Anuradhapura: Reconstructing aspects of trade and exchange in bitumen-coated ceramic vessels between Iran and Sri Lanka from the Third to the Ninth Centuries AD. 2008 Stern, Ben; Connan, J.; Blakelock, Eleanor S.; Jackman, R.; Coningham, Robin A.E.; Heron, Carl P.
Neolithic zoomorphic vessels from Eastern Macedonia, Greece: Issues of function 2009 Marangou, C.; Stern, Ben
Analysis of three putative birch bark tar samples from Melkøya, Arctic Norway 2009 Stern, Ben; Heron, Carl P.; Clelland, Sarah-Jane; Nordby, C.C.
Analysis of yellow "fat" deposits on Inuit boots 2009 Edwards, Howell G.M.; Stern, Ben; Burgio, L.; Kite, M.
Beeswax preserved in a Late Chalcolithic Bevelled Rim bowl from the Tehran Plain, Iran 2012 Mayyas, A.; Stern, Ben; Gillmore, Gavin; Coningham, Robin A.E.; Fazeli Nashli, H.
Waking the dead: Scientific analysis of an Egyptian tunic. 2009 Haldane, E.A.; Gillies, Sara; O'Connor, Sonia A.; Batt, Catherine M.; Stern, Ben
Trace element concentrations in mangrove sediments in the Sundarbans, Bangladesh 2009 Awal, M.A.; Hale, William H.G.; Stern, Ben
The Identity of the St Bees Lady, Cumbria: An Osteobiographical Approach 2010 Knüsel, Christopher J.; Batt, Catherine M.; Cook, G.; Montgomery, Janet; Müldner, G.; Ogden, Alan R.; Palmer, C.; Stern, Ben; Todd, J.; Wilson, Andrew S.
Gas chromatographic, mass spectrometric and stable carbon isotope investigations of organic residues in `slab-lined pits' from Arctic Norway 2010 Heron, Carl P.; Nilsen, G.; Stern, Ben; Craig, O.E.; Nordby, C.C.
Molecular and isotopic demonstration of the processing of aquatic products in northern European prehistoric pottery 2007 Craig, O.E.; Forster, M.; Andersen, S.H.; Koch, E.; Crombé, P.; Milner, N.J.; Stern, Ben; Bailey, G.N.; Heron, Carl P.
Application of lipid biomarker analysis to evaluate the function of "slab-lined pits" in Arctic Norway 2010 Heron, Carl P.; Nilsen, G.; Stern, Ben; Craig, O.E.; Nordby, C.C.
The 'semblance of immortality'? Resinous materials and mortuary rites in Roman Britain 2014 Brettell, Rhea C.; Stern, Ben; Reifarth, N.; Heron, Carl P.
Olive oil or lard? Distinguishing plant oils from animal fats in the archaeological record of the eastern Mediterranean using gas chromatography/combustion/isotope ratio mass spectrometry 2010 Rapid Communications in Mass Spectrometry 24 3478 - 3484 Steele, Valerie J.; Stern, Ben; Stott, A.W.
The circulation and consumption of Red Lustrous Wheelmade Ware: petrographic, chemical and residue analysis 2005 Anatolian Studies 55 25 - 59 Knappett, C.; Kilikoglou, V.; Steele, Valerie J.; Stern, Ben
New investigations into the Uluburun resin cargo 2008 Stern, Ben; Heron, Carl P.; Tellefsen, T.; Serpico, M.
‘Choicest unguents’: molecular evidence for the use of resinous plant exudates in late Roman mortuary rites in Britain 2015 Brettell, Rhea C.; Schotsmans, Eline M.J.; Walton Rogers, P.; Reifarth, N.; Redfern, R.C.; Stern, Ben; Heron, Carl P.
Organic residue analysis of Egyptian votive mummies and their research potential 2016 Brettell, Rhea C.; Martin, William H.C.; Atherton-Woolham, S.; Stern, Ben; McKnight, L.
Qualitative and Quantitative Assessment of Fatty Acids of Buddleja asiatica by GC-MS 2013 Ali, F.; Ali, I.; Bibi, H.; Malik, A.; Stern, Ben; Maitland, Derek J.
Yesterday's hair--human hair in archaeology 2001 Biologist 48 Wilson, Andrew S.; Dixon, Ronald A.; Dodson, Hilary I.; Janaway, Robert C.; Pollard, A. Mark; Stern, Ben; Tobin, Desmond J.
Red Lustrous Wheelmade ware: analysis of organic residues in Late Bronze Age trade and storage vessels from the eastern Mediterranean 2017 Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports 16 614 - 657 Steele, Valerie J.; Stern, Ben Elsevier 10.1016/j.jasrep.2017.06.027
A study of 18th century Coptic icons of Ibrahim Al-Nasekh using Raman microscopy and gas chromatography-mass spectrometry: Indigo as an organic pigment in Egyptian panel paintings 2012 Vibrational Spectroscopy 62 98 - 109 Abdel-Ghani M.;Stern B.;Edwards H.;Janaway R. 0924-2031 10.1016/j.vibspec.2012.05.003
Desert roads and transport vessels from Late Roman-Coptic times in the Eastern Sahara 2005 Journal of African Archaeology 3 213 - 229 Eichhorn B.;Hendrickx S.;Riemer H.;Stern B. 1612-1651 10.3213/1612-1651-10051
A comparison of methods for establishing fatty acid concentration gradients across potsherds: A case study using Late Bronze Age Canaanite amphorae 2000 Archaeometry 42 399 - 414 Stern B.;Heron C.;Serpico M.;Bourriau J. 0003-813X 10.1111/j.1475-4754.2000.tb00890.x
Compositional variations in aged and heated pistacia resin found in late bronze age canaanite amphorae and bowls from Amarna, Egypt 2003 Archaeometry 45 457 - 469 Stern B.;Heron C.;Corr L.;Serpico M.;Bourriau J. 0003-813X 10.1111/1475-4754.00121
Combined FT-Raman spectroscopic and mass spectrometric study of ancient Egyptian sarcophagal fragments 2007 Analytical and Bioanalytical Chemistry 387 829 - 836 Edwards H.;Stern B.;Villar S.;David A. 1618-2642 10.1007/s00216-006-0640-x
Dating resin coating on pottery: The Spirit Cave early ceramic dates revised 2003 Antiquity 77 126 - 133 Lampert C.;Glover I.;Hedges R.;Heron C.;Higham T.;Stern B.;Shoocongdej R.;Thompson G. 0003-598X 10.1017/S0003598X0006141X
A Raman microscopic and gas chromatographic-mass spectrometric study of two 19th century overlapping Coptic icons of Anastasy Al-Romi 2008 Vibrational Spectroscopy 48 69 - 75 Abdel-Ghani M.;Edwards H.;Janaway R.;Stern B. 0924-2031 10.1016/j.vibspec.2008.02.013
PET bottle use patterns and antimony migration into bottled water and soft drinks: The case of British and Nigerian bottles 2012 Journal of Environmental Monitoring 14 1237 - 1247 Tukur A.;Sharp L.;Stern B.;Tizaoui C.;Benkreira H. 1464-0325 10.1039/c2em10917d
Birch-bark tar at Neolithic Makriyalos, Greece 2002 Antiquity 76 962 - 967 Urem-Kotsou D.;Stern B.;Heron C.;Kotsakis K. 0003-598X 10.1017/S0003598X00091766
Characterization of paint and varnish on a medieval Coptic-Byzantine icon: Novel usage of dammar resin 2009 Spectrochimica Acta - Part A: Molecular and Biomolecular Spectroscopy 73 566 - 575 Abdel-Ghani M.;Edwards H.;Stern B.;Janaway R. 1386-1425 10.1016/j.saa.2008.10.050
Bulk stable light isotopic ratios in recent and archaeological resins: Towards detecting the transport of resins in antiquity? 2008 Archaeometry 50 351 - 370 Stern B.;Lampert Moore C.;Heron C.;Pollard A. 0003-813X 10.1111/j.1475-4754.2007.00357.x
Organic residue analysis of Egyptian votive mummies and their research potential 2017 Studies in Conservation 62 68 - 82 Brettell R.;Martin W.;Atherton-Woolham S.;Stern B.;McKnight L. 0039-3630 10.1179/2047058415Y.0000000027
The application of LA-ICP-MS in the examination of the thin plating layers found in late Roman coins 2007 Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section B: Beam Interactions with Materials and Atoms 265 558 - 568 Vlachou-Mogire C.;Stern B.;McDonnell J. 0168-583X 10.1016/j.nimb.2007.09.040
'Choicest unguents': Molecular evidence for the use of resinous plant exudates in late Roman mortuary rites in Britain 2015 Journal of Archaeological Science 53 639 - 648 Brettell R.;Schotsmans E.;Walton Rogers P.;Reifarth N.;Redfern R.;Stern B.;Heron C. 0305-4403 10.1016/j.jas.2014.11.006
Molecular and isotopic demonstration of the processing of acquatic products in Northern European prehistoric pottery 2007 Archaeometry 49 135 - 152 Craig O.;Forster M.;Andersen S.;Koch E.;Crombé P.;Milner N.;Stern B.;Bailey G.;Heron C. 0003-813X 10.1111/j.1475-4754.2007.00292.x
A geochemical investigation of the origin of rouletted and other related South Asian fine wares 2005 Antiquity 79 909 - 920 Ford L.;Pollard A.;Coningham R.;Stern B. 0003-598X 10.1017/S0003598X00115030
Bulk stable light isotopic ratios in archaeological birch bark tars 2006 Applied Geochemistry 21 1668 - 1673 Stern B.;Clelland S.;Nordby C.;Urem-Kotsou D. 0883-2927 10.1016/j.apgeochem.2006.07.004
Determination of contamination by polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and their mode of origin, in urban soils from Leeds (UK) 2018 Hamed, Heiam A. Mohamed; Hale, William H.G.; Stern, Ben