Suitability of X ray spectrometry to distinguish a handwritten 16th century real estate sales document from its copy

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In this work the elemental composition of paper and ink belonging to two paper handwritten documents is compared using non-destructive Energy Dispersive X Ray Fluorescence. The two documents correspond to a real estate sales manuscript dating from 1555 and a more recent copy of the same transaction, of unknown origin. The findings obtained using this spectroscopic technique were confronted with the analysis of two paper samples using Scanning Electron Microscopy coupled to Energy Dispersive system, in order to further evaluate the presence of inclusions. Moreover, fiber identification was also pursued. The raw materials employed presented very similar between documents, however, elemental analysis of paper and ink have proven efficient in distinguishing both paper documents and both inks. The obtained results on the characterization of the materials are consistent with the paleographic analysis and watermark identification previously attempted that dated the copy document from the first half of the 18th century.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)21-27
Number of pages7
JournalSpectrochimica Acta - Part B Atomic Spectroscopy
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2018
Event40th Colloquium on Spectroscopicum Internationale (CSI) - Pisa, Italy
Duration: 11 Jun 201716 Jun 2017



  • Ink
  • Forensic Sciences
  • Ink entries

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