Futile fragments?- some thoughts on microlith breakage patterns

Finlay, N. (2009) Futile fragments?- some thoughts on microlith breakage patterns. In: Finlay, N., McCartan, S., Milner, N. and Wiickham-Jones, C. (eds.) From Bann Flakes to Bushmills: Papers in Honour of Professor Peter Woodman. Series: Prehistoric Society Research Paper (1). Oxbow Books: Oxford, pp. 22-30. ISBN 9781842173558

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Microlith fragments are often overlookedin conventional lithic analysis due to the perceived limits of their typological utility. This paper presents the resilts of a detailed examination of microlith fragments from Lough Boora, Co. Offaly, Ireland as well as two Scottish Mesolithic sites: Bolsay Farm, Islay and Staosnaig,Colonsay. A pilot study to develop methodologies for microlith fragments is presented using an attribute-based approach; the objective being the exploration of breakage patterns as a means to determine stages in the microlith biography via the identification of manufacture, use and post-depositional fracture. The results reveal that while we can quantify post-depositional and manufacturing breakage with some confidence, the criteria for macroscopic use-wear needs to be critically re-evaluated.

Item Type:Book Sections (Other)
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Finlay, Dr Nyree
Authors: Finlay, N.
College/School:College of Arts > School of Humanities > Archaeology
Publisher:Oxbow Books
Copyright Holders:The Prehistoric Society, Oxbow Books and individual author
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