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Department of Archaeology



I read Archaeology at Complutense University of Madrid (2016) and continued my studies with an MSc in Archaeological Science at UCL (2017). After working as a technician at the School of Archaeology and Ancient History (University of Leicester), I completed a PhD in Archaeometallurgy at the University of Cambridge (Trinity College, 2023), funded by the AHRC-DTP and the Cambridge Trust.  

I currently work as a Research Associate of the AHRC-funded project ‘Small Performances’: investigating the typographic punches of John Baskerville (1707-75) through heritage science and practice-based research. This project brings together a multidisciplinary team of researchers and professionals from the University of Cambridge, Birmingham City University, and the Cambridge University Library.


I am interested in re-examining existent histories of technology from multidisciplinary perspectives to socially understand technological choices. To do so, I  reverse-engineer prehistoric and historic practices using experimental archaeology and analysing production residues and finished objects.

My PhD challenged the prevailing lineal model of technological development so far associated to bronze alloying technology by exposing alternative paths of socio-technological change. This project was based on a case study involving experimentation and the analysis of Iberian slag and technical ceramics (2300-200BC).

My current research focuses on John Baskerville’s punches, a remarkable 18th century printer and typeface designer. The scientific analysis of these steel tools will allow understanding how punch-cutting was contextually performed. This will generate original knowledge on a vaguely known – yet fundamental – aspect  of the history of printing technology.

More broadly, my research interests are related to technical knowledge transmission, rejection and evolution, archaeometallurgy, cross-craft interactions, and materials analysis. 

Key Publications

Key publications: 

Montes-Landa, J.; Murillo-Barroso, M.; Montero-Ruiz, I.; Rovira-Llorens, S. and Martinón-Torres, M. (2021). Interwoven traditions in Bell Beaker metallurgy: Approaching the social value of copper at Bauma del Serrat del Pont (Northeast Iberia). PLoS ONE, 16(8): e0255818.

Montes-Landa, J.; Jürcke, F. and Ceccarelli, A. (eds.) (2021). Knowledge-scapesArchaeological Review from Cambridge, 35.2.

Jürcke, F.; Montes-Landa, J. and Ceccarelli, A. (2021). 'Knowledge-scapes' in archaeology: an introductionArchaeological Review from Cambridge, 35.2: 1-24.

Montes-Landa, J.; Montero-Ruiz, I.; Castanyer Masoliver, P.; Santos Retolaza, M.; Tremoleda Trilla, J. and Martinón-Torres, M. (2020).Traditions and innovations: Versatility of copper and tin bronze making recipes in Iron Age Emporion (L'Escala, Spain)Archaeological and Anthropological Sciences, 12:124.

Job Titles

Research Associate, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research

General Info

Not available for consultancy
Research Expertise / Fields of study: 
Material Culture
Artefact Analysis & Technology

Contact Details

jm2219 [at]
McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research
Downing Street


Person keywords: 
Technological choices
Materials analysis
Experimental archaeology
Technical knowledge transmission
Heritage Studies
Science, Technology and Innovation
Material Culture
Geographical areas: 
Periods of interest: 
Copper/Bronze Age
Iron Age
Other Historical