عنوان مقاله [English]
Huto cave is situated on the east of modern city of Behshahr in Mazandaran province in northern Iran. This cave and Kamarband (Belt) cave are located in a cliff on the northern slope of the Alborz Mountains close to the southeastern beach of Caspian Sea. An expedition mission from the University of Pennsylvania directed by Carleton Stevens Coon discovered and excavated these in 1949 and 1951. The aim was discovery the Paleolithic remains, but meanwhile Paleolithic excavation some material cultures from other periods were found as well. In Huto cave four tranches (A, B, C, and D) were excavated. As the result of the excavation, more than 13 meters of deposits were revealed, from which 22 samples for C 14 analysis determination dates were obtained. Coon arranged the results of this analysis into 8 groups or periods, dated back to the Mesolithic (or Epi Paleolithic) through Islamic Period. Among these periods, Iron Age with 12 samples was dated spanning between 1000 to 735 B.C. Iron Age materials in this cave reposed on the forth soil change in 4.6 meters depth. The most significant finding from Iron Age in Huto cave was ceramic shards; part of which are preserved in Ceramic Department of National Museum of Iran. Aiming to do archaeological investigations, these shards have classified to 4 apart types: 1) Red Ware, 2) Gray Ware, 3) Gray Cooking ware, and 4) Brown Ware; this article will discuss the petrographic analysis of these types. Petrographic investigation is based on analysis of composition and other structural characteristics of the ceramics to distinguish the temper type of ceramics regarding their physical and chemical attribute, regional or trans-regional source of clay, temperature of baking kiln, and some of possible technical effects of potters. Overall, 98 shards from these 4 types were used to make thin sections; 45 samples from red ware, 7 samples from gray ware, 29 samples from gray cooking ware, and 10 samples from brown ware. The number of samples from each type was depends on its quantity, as red ware with 45 samples is the most numerous type and gray ware with 7 samples is the thinnest type. This research reveals some differences in combination and kind of temper. In gray cooking ware, a considerable quantity of calcite and shell were used as temper. Both of these materials are calcareous, a characteristic that probably the potter was aware of its practical benefit in production cooking ware. Silica is the typical temper in the red and gray wares, although little particles of mica and Feldspar are found in paste of the brown ware. It seems that the temperature of baking kiln was varied in different types, and probably different kilns were used to bake the different types, as the gray cooking ware was baked in 750 - 800o C, the red ware in lower than 900o C, the gray ware in about 900o C, and the brown ware in 950 – 1000o C. The brown ware has most variance compare to other types, regarding to quality and high temperature of baking, fine paste, and tiny temper; because of these attributes, it could have an origin out of the region. But, this idea needs additional investigations about the source of used clay in different ceramic types via more extensive research. This research could be an introduction to petrographic comparative investigations about Iron Age Pottery of the region.