History I would like to start with a quotation of Alfred Bullermann: 'If we want to know where we are going to, we have to know where we are coming from.' Having this in mind, he travelled back to the time of early iron production and produced iron in a simple smelting furnace as our ancestors did. One of the oldest handcrafts is the work of blacksmiths. Over centuries, this profession has not lost its fascination and actuality. History of metallurgy goes back to 9000 B. C. With the first hammer blow the profession of blacksmiths was born. As early as 3000 B. C. the first bronze weapons and tools were crafted. In 1500 B. C. the Hittites produced iron in the northern Mesopotamian highlands. Between 1200 and 800 B. C. iron production spread even more. Climate changes and migration of nations lead to the extinction of many early advanced civilisations, like the Nordic Bronze Age, the Greek Mycenae and the Hittite Kingdom, and weakened others substantially, like Egypt.
At around 1000 B. C. iron was found not only in Mesopotamia, but also in Egypt, at the Indus Valley, in China and according to the latest research data, also in Sweden. It was at the Iron Age when a new myth was born: the myth of the mysterious blacksmith. Iron production seemed to be a mysterious process by which 'stones' (bog iron ore) were transformed to precious metal. Extremely hot fires, spitting bellows, flying sparks and soot-blackened fellows reminded on the underworld of Hephaestus, the limping god of all blacksmiths.

'Iron Age equals Celts Age'. The Celts settled all over Europe. During the 'Hallstatt-Culture' (800-400 B. C.) and the La-Tčne culture they were true masters of iron processing. However, until today we cannot tell exactly where the cradle of Damascus steel stood. I am convinced that Damascus steel co-emerged at all places where ore was used for iron production.
Alfred Bullermann has demonstrated it. His experiences with the smelting furnace and the draw out of the ball have shown that Damascus steel is the result of steel production. Most probably, the first patterns developed unintentionally and became visible during the hardening process in different agents.
In the past and today, smiths have seen the potential and learned to control the pattern forming process. Over the past 2500 years the well-known patterns developed and continue to captivate us still.