The development of a trace element “fingerprint” as obtained by trace element determination and data reduction has been successfully applied to clear out correlations and similarities among objects of archaeological interest. In the present paper instrumental neutron activation analysis and statistical data treatment were used to solve two archaeological questions: (I) the search of white marble quarries which Etruscans were used to exploit to manufacture monuments and sculptures; (2) the search of similarity, and possibly of provenance, among pottery fragments excavated in Sardinia and belonging to the eneolithic period. Trace element matrices are presented and discussed. Data treatment, such as rare-earth element pattern and pattern recognition procedures, is reported and discussed
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