Butchering or wood? A LSCM analysis to distinguish use-wear on stone tools



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Álvarez Fernández, Ana and García González, Rebeca and Márquez, Belén and Carretero, José Miguel and Arsuaga, Juan Luis (2020) Butchering or wood? A LSCM analysis to distinguish use-wear on stone tools. Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports, 31 (102377). ISSN 2352-409X

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jasrep.2020.102377


Traceological method is based on the identification and analysis of the stone tools surface modifications as a result of the use, hafting or manufacturing procedures, among others. Traditionally, use-wear analyses have been conducted using Optical Light Microscopy (OLM) or even, Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM), normally basing the interpretations on subjective descriptions. Although there are general protocols successfully followed and good results in this field, researchers have always been conscious about the need to advance towards a quantitative an objective method. In response to that concern, techniques as Laser Scanning Confocal Microscopy (LSCM) are being applied successfully to functional analyses, thus improving the metrological studies.

The main goal of this research is the characterization and quantification of those alterations caused by butchering activities in comparison with unused areas in order to recognize modification patterns on the chert natural surface. Wood working has been also included in this study as a comparative sample. Also, a quantitative distinction between micropolishes produced by butchering activities and wood working has been carried out. The results show that discrimination between unused areas and wood micropolishes is possible. Meanwhile, butchering activities modify lightly the chert surface. On the other hand, quantitative parameters statistically differ between worked materials proving this method to be useful to identify them.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:Use-wear, Micropolish, Confocal microscopy, Experimental archaeology, Roughness
Subjects:Sciences > Geology > Paleontology
Humanities > History > Archaeology
ID Code:63687
Deposited On:20 Jan 2021 19:06
Last Modified:21 Jan 2021 07:58

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