Bronze axe

Lloma de Betxí (Paterna, Valencia)

Gender roles

For a long time, archaeological research has denied the participation of women in metalworking processes. The fact that some of the most important materials were considered weapons led any relationship between women and these objects to be ruled out. However, in the majority of archaeological sites on the Iberian Peninsula, the ovens used for metalworking are integrated into the settlement, a factor which might lead us to think that both men and women took part in the processing of minerals to obtain metal tools. In addition, the importance of supply of the raw material, the minerals necessary for alloys, in which female participation has been documented ethnographically, should not be forgotten.