How Do They Make and Use Tools?


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A summary of Chapter 8: Technology, explains about the early stage of tools development.

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How Do They Make and Use Tools?

  1. 1. Chapter 8 How Did They Make and Use Tools? Technology Maharani Dian Permanasari 1314011016 Graduate Program in Cultural Resource Management
  2. 2. “how were artifacts made and what were they used for?” “are they artifacts at all?” Approaches: •  Archaeological •  Scientific analysis of objects •  Ethnographic •  Experimental •  Advice of modern experts in equivalent technologies Industrial Archaeology
  3. 3. Interpreting the Evidence: Archaeological, Scientific Analysis “how to distinguish?” Artifacts •  shaped by humans •  purposely struck off •  characteristic bulges/ bulbs of percussion •  regular shape Approaches Nature-forged •  shaped by nature/ geologically processed (heat, frost, fall, etc.) •  natural fractures •  irregular scars and no bulb •  crude shape Interpreting the Evidence: the Use of Ethnographic Analogy Ethnographic Analogy in identifying tools: •  people tend to use abundantly available materials for daily, mundane tasks. •  people will invest time and effort into making implements they will use repeatedly. •  can be used in identifying the precise function of a particular artifact in a specific level. •  limited to cultures with a similar subsistence level and same ecological background. Interpreting the Evidence: Experiments Two classes of raw materials used in creating objects: •  unaltered (e.g. flint) •  synthetic (e.g. pottery, metal)
  4. 4. Survival of the Evidence (Artifacts) Timeline: Rise of Life and Artifacts 63 m.y.a 24 m.y.a 2 m.y.a CENOZOIC ERA PALEOGENE QUARTERNARY NEOGENE dinosaurs go extinct Hominis descend from the trees mammals fill dinosaurs’ shoes Ice Age begin to grip world primates appear in the trees modern humans are born m.y.a : million years ago STONE AGE PALEOLITHIC PERIOD MESOLITHIC PERIOD NEOLITHIC PERIOD AROUND 8000 BC BRONZE AGE PYROTECHNOLOGY AROUND 3400 BC METALWORK IRON AGE OVER THE PERIOD 3000BC TO 1600-1500BC UNALTERED SYNTHETIC
  5. 5. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE Timeline: Stone Age (est. 2.6 m.y.a. up to 16,000BC) m.y.a : million years ago 2.5 m.y.a 15,000 y.a 11,000 y.a PALEOLITHIC MESOLITHIC NEOLITHIC or OLD STONE AGE •  human used stones which found in nature and already had cutting edge for hunting. •  they used tree branches, leaves, and stones to make shelter for living. •  they ate plants and meat, gathered berries. they may have eaten flesh of dead animals left b e h i n d by o t h e r l a r g e r predators. •  they used fire by rubbing stones together and roasted meat. or MIDDLE STONE AGE •  human started to sharpen their stone tools for hunting. •  they looked for stones (such as flint) that was harder and could be sharpened easily. •  they ate started to settle in one place, but still remain as hunter and gatherer of meat, fish, nuts, fruits, and berries. or NEW STONE AGE •  group of hunters learned about agriculture. •  they collected wild crops and domesticated wild animals. •  by 10,000 years ago they started to produce grains, fruits, and vegetables from seeds. •  they made plow out of antlers, stone and wood, and started to cultivate the land with the help of herded animals. •  they used stone mortars and pestles to grind cereals and grains.
  6. 6. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Extraction Sources most visible archaeologically: mines and quarries. 1.  Mines (Neolithic and later flint mines in northern Europe) •  The basic technology remained fundamentally the same for the later extraction of other materials. •  There are mixture of open-cast and shaft mining, depending on the terrain and seams position. •  There were a variety of clues to the mining techniques (i.e. Rijckholt’s antler picks which was effective against hard rock). •  Rock faces were sometimes initially broken up by heating with a small fire. •  Some wooden tools have survived at copper mines in the Mitterberg area of the Austrian Alps. Grimes Graves, eastern England. Spiennes, Belgium. Krzemionki, Poland. Rijckholt, Netherland. 2.  Quarries •  Unfinished objects or abandoned stones helps archaeologists in making technological reconstruction. Rano Raraku, Easter Island   Unfinished Obelisk, Aswan - Egypt   Rumiqolqa, Peru  
  7. 7. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Transportation (large stones) Discoveries of slides and ramps, drag marks inquired the blocks were dragged broad-face down. •  Experiments of accomplishing the dragging: statue or block tied to a wooden sled, and men are pulling on ropes. experiment: dragging the obelisk. hieroglyph showing the transportation of a statue of Prince Djehutihetep, el-Bersheh, Egypt.  
  8. 8. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE Construction Technique (large stones) Using examples from Inca stonework (pg. 315), unfinished Greek temple at Segesta (Sicily), Apollo temple in Didyma (Turkey), Easter Island and Stone Henge (pg. 314). h#p://­‐/  
  9. 9. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Stone Tool Manufacture (smaller stones) •  Mostly made by removing material from a pebble or “core” until the desired shape of the core has been attained. •  The core is the main implements, but the flakes themselves can be used as knives, scrapers, etc. •  The first recognizable tools are simple choppers and flakes made by knocking pieces off pebbles to obtain sharp edges.
  10. 10. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE Time Period Time Range Technology Lower Paleolithic 2 million – 200,000 Oldowan : stone tools, choppers, flakes. e.g. Oldowan industry from Olduvai Gorge 5 cm Acheulian : symmetrical shape, sharp edges. achieved using a bone hammer. 20 cm 200,000 – 40,000 Mousterian : prepared stone cores used as raw materials of smaller tools, including scrapers and points for spears. 100 cm 100,000 Levallois : involved a careful preparation of a tortoise-shaped core. Upper Paleolithic 40,000 – 12,000 Gravettian : and later technology made it possible to remove numerous parallel-sided blades from a single core. Mesolithic 12,000 – 10,000 Rise to dominance of microliths (small flints), tiny stone tools in various shapes in barbed rods, composite implements of arrow or spears. Neolithic 10,000 Domestication of plants and animals, and the rise of agricultural communities. Bronze & Iron Ages 5,000 Beginning of technology based on metalls: copper then bronze then iron. Industrialization 200 Beginning of the industrial age. Middle Paleolithic Length of Cutting Edge Produced 300 cm – 1200 cm
  11. 11. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE Technology/ Complexity Time Period Lower Paleolithic Middle Paleolithic Upper Paleolithic Mesolithic Neolithic Levallois flakes Acheulian : bifacial/symmetrical tools Gravettian : blades from a single core. Microlith (small flints), tiny stone tools as composite implements of arrow or spears. Oldowan : flakes 2 million – 200,000 200,000 – 40,000 Time Range 40,000 – 12,000 12,000 – 10,000 10,000
  12. 12. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Some techniques of manufactures can be inferred from traces left on the tools, or observed among the few living peoples who continue to make stone tools, or from artistic depictions. In most other cases, there are two principal approaches in experimental archaeology: 1. Stone Tool Replication •  Making exact copies of different types of stone tool – using only the technology available to the original makers. •  To assess the processes entailed, the amount of time and effort needed, much to the benefit of our knowledge of ancient stone-knapping. •  Can be used to discover whether certain flint tools had been heated during manufacture. •  To narrow possibilities and points to the most likely method that is being used. 2. Refitting of Stone Tools •  Entails attempting to put tools and flakes back together again. •  Allows us to follow the stages of the knapper’s craft and movements around the site. •  Considerable vertical movement can occur through different layers of site, even where there are no visible traces of disturbance. •  Provides a dynamic perspective on the spatial distribution of tools, and produces a vivid picture of actual movement and activity in an ancient site.
  13. 13. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? The only direct proof of function is to study the minute traces, or microwear patterns, that remain on the original tools. Three ways to identify the function of stone tools: •  microwear studies (pg. 319) •  further experiments with stone artifacts (pg. 322) •  assessing and analyzing the technology of Stone Age art (pg. 323) refitting microwear studies a vivid picture of prehistoric life (pg. 322)
  14. 14. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Microwear Study (pg. 319)
  15. 15. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? CASE STUDY: Refitting and Microwear Studies at Rekem, Belgium (pg. 320-321) TECHNOLOGY manufac ture repair aspects related use types of tool 1. site degree 2. spatial analysis discard Microwear Refitting Experiments in Excavation
  16. 16. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Further Experiments with Stone Artifacts (pg. 322) Lower Paleolithic hand-axe of Boxgrove, England. •  hand-axe, used by someone with the relevant skills and knowledge, is an outstanding and versatile butchery tool. Upper Paleolithic stone lamp of France. •  stone lamp is used as an ancient lamp of the Inuit lighting systems. •  determine the amount of light given out by the ancient lamps. Prehistoric minute beads of pueblos in Arizona. •  attempt to assess the time needed for making this necklace. such experiments help to asses the inherent value of an object through the amount of work involved in its creation.
  17. 17. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Assessing the Technology of Stone Age Art (pg. 323-324) Cave of Niaux, Pyrenees •  the use of specific mix of pigments and mineral such as talc improved the paint’s adhesion to the wall and stopped it cracking. •  not only minerals, binders could also be organic such as animal and plant oils. •  •  •  scanning electron microscopy X-ray diffraction proton-induced X-ray emission Cave of Pech Merle, France •  experiment results (“spotted horse”) indicated that the entire composition could have been made in an hour, supporting the fact that much rock art was probably done in intensive bursts by talented artists. •  •  infrared film to enhance the visibility of each pigments ethnographic observation together with experiments
  18. 18. UNALTERED MATERIALS: STONE How were stone artifacts extracted, transported, manufactured, and used? Assessing the Technology of Stone Age Art (pg. 323-324) La Marche (France) Technology of the binocular microscope can be used to great effect in the study of engravings on stone: •  it can determine the type of tool and stroke used. •  determine the differences in width and in transverse section of the lines, and sometimes the order in which the lines were made. •  technique of making imprint with plasticine or silicone can shows which lines were engraved after which. •  varnish replicas of engraved surfaces on stones can be examined in the scanning electron microscope, and compared further.
  19. 19. French cave of Lascaux ... many other methods of analysis used on stone artifacts have also been applied to other unaltered materials such as bone.
  20. 20. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather deducing techniques of manufacture deducing function archaeological process [to reveal complexities, sequence, and tools involved] –case study: South African site of Kasteelberg (pg. 324) experimental archaeology [to deduce the function] –case study: antler baton of La Madeleine, France (pg. 325) deer shoulder-blade, Mugharet El Wad, Israel study of wear patterns [to deduce efficiency and manufacturing process especially about the importance of organic materials] microwear studies combined with experimental archaeology [to find characteristic traits of historical artifacts] points of arrow, San Bushmen, Kalahari antler projectile points, Lower Magdalenian, northern Spain
  21. 21. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather deducing function – replication experiment by John Coles The Clonbrin Leather Shield, from the Bronze Age (about 13th Century BC) of Ireland. Originally made of one piece of tanned leather (probably ox). Experiment result stated that the leather shield was flexible and deflected the blows of spear or sword, thus functioned better in combat rather than bronze shield. John Coles’ woodworking experiment in the Somerset Levels (England) can be seen in pg. 326-327.
  22. 22. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] Wood •  Have been used to make tools as long as stone and bone, if wood survives in good condition, it may preserve tool marks to show how it was worked. •  Waterlogged wood has yielded the richest information about woodworking skills. (Experiment by John and Bryony Coles, page 326-327). •  Can be categorized into small (tools) and large wooden objects (e.g. buildings, wheeled transportation, and watercrafts). •  Investigating watercrafts: archaeological evidences is abundant in the preserved remains of ships uncovered by underwater archaeology. •  Excavation results showed that vessels of earlier period in the century were built with planks held together by mortise and tenon joints. •  The best way to learn how a ship was built and function is to refit and rebuild the vessel, either a full-size or a scale replica, preferably one that can be tested on the water. •  Archaeology can demonstrate the presence of boats/crafts even where no ship remains or artistic depictions exist. wheel chariot in Assyrian Relief, 9th Century BC experimental archaeology: 4th Century BC Greek ship, Kyrenia, Cyprus
  23. 23. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] Plant & Animal Fibers •  These fragile materials survive in very dry (arid regions –i.e. study of basketry and cordage as in Egypt) or wet (waterlogged –i.e. well-preserved workshops of Viking York in England) condition. analyzing textiles how they were made of what they were made microwear analysis of fibers Peruvian textile at Guitarrero Cave (
  24. 24. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] ... how they were made ; of what they were made Place Peruvian Andean Time Period (circa) 1st Century AD 3000 BC Technology Weavings: big vertical loom; big horizontal loom; small loom for clothing and bags. Material: animal fiber, dyed Weavings, decoration, cotton textiles Painted cotton fabrics Chibca, Colombia Thebes. Egypt 2000 BC Weaving workshops in the tomb of Meketre Kahun. Egypt 1890 BC Weaving, slinging thread, coloring dye (madder for red, indigo for blue) Weaving, spindle, looms. Materials: animal fiber Viking York, England Hochdorf, Germany 550 BC Weaving at Celtic chieftain's tomb Cayonu, Turkey 7000 BC White linen fragment made of flax clinging to an antler tool Pavlov, Czech 25,000 – 27,000 y.a Weaving and textiles of flexible basketry on fired clay Dzudzuana, Georgia 30,000 y.a Dyed flax fibers show the existence of colored twine
  25. 25. OTHER UNALTERED MATERIALS : [Bone, Antler, Shell, Leather], [Wood], [Plant & Animal Fibers] ... microwear analysis of fibers •  Different kinds of fracture, damage, and wear leave diagnostic traces on different classes of fibers. •  Cutting of fibers is easy to identify, and razor-marks are readily distinguishable from those made by shears or scissors. •  Even where textiles do not survive, they sometimes leave an impression behind. •  similarly useful information can be derived from the study of imprints of fabrics, cordage, and basketry that are found on fired clay. An insole for a child’s shoe of Vindolanda, Northern England. Soldier’s leg bandage of Vindolanda, Northern England.
  26. 26. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS FIRING and PYROTECHNOLOGY •  The whole development of technology –related to synthetic materials- in terms of the control of fire: pyro technology. •  The introduction of the potter’s kiln in pottery-making meant higher temperatures could be achieved, also spurring on the development of metallurgy. Mesopotamian dome-shaped kiln early 4th millennium BC Egyptian kiln of c. 3000 BC Greek kiln of c. 500 BC •  Potters’ kiln can control the air-flow and temperatures which lead to metallurgy in Bronze Age and Iron Age. •  Technology of the production of glass and faience appeared with the manufacture of bronze –since a higher temperature and better control are needed.
  27. 27. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS Timeline of Firing Technology Lower Paleolithic FIRING and PYROTECHNOLOGY Middle Paleolithic Upper Paleolithic Mesolithic Neolithic Teracotta (baked clay) figurines Lehringen, Germany Near East: construction of special ovens used both to parch cereal grains and to bake bread (the first construction of a deliberate facility to control the conditions under which the temperature was raised) 1.  Czech Republic: Dolni Vestonice, the Black Venus that may have been used in some special rituals 2. Pyrenees 3. North Africa 4. Siberia Swartkrans Cave, South Africa 1.5 million years ago 200,000 – 40,000 Time Range 26,000 years ago 12,000 – 10,000 c. 8000
  28. 28. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS POTTERY •  The lack of pottery vessels before the Neolithic Period is a consequence of the mobile way of life of Paleolithic huntergatherers, for whom heavy containers of fired clay would have been of limited usefulness. •  The introductory of pottery generally seems to coincide with permanent-way-of living, for which durable tools are a necessity. •  Archaeological field –especially Industrial Archaeology- learns a lot from this almost indestructible artifact, starts from the pot tempers, how were they made, how were they fired, and also some evidence from ethnography. Pot Tempers •  The inclusion in the clay –temper- added strength and workability to counteract any cracking or shringkage during firing. •  The finer the temper, the stronger the pot. How Were Pots Made? •  The making or ‘throwing’ of pots on a turntable introduced after 3400 BC. Previously, pots are made by hand in a series of coils or slabs of clay. •  Wheel thrown pots usually have marks left by the fingertips as the potter draws the outer surface of pots by flat paddles or cloth to paste a smooth finish. How Were Pots Fired? •  The firing technique can be inferred from certain characteristics of the finished product. (pg. 334-335) •  The extent of oxidization in a pot is also indicative of firing methods. (pg. 335)
  29. 29. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS POTTERY ... How Were Pots Fired? •  The archaeology of kiln sites has contributed much to our knowledge of firing procedures. •  The development of kiln in design and construction –from the early, crude, clay forms to technically advanced brick ones which allow higher firing temperaturesensure production throughout the year (reflecting the increasing demands being made on pottery-making industry). Evidence from Ethnography •  Pottery making by traditional methods is still widespread in the world, so it is profitable to pursue ethnoarchaeological studies from the social and commercial points of view. •  Archaeologists can derive many valuable insights fro ethnoarchaeological work. •  Historical sources and artistic depictions from a number of cultures provide supplementary data. figurines of Si Satchanalai and Sukhothai, central Thailand
  30. 30. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS FAIENCE AND GLASS •  The earliest faience (pre-glass) was originated in Predynastic Egypt (before 3000 BC) and used for beads and pendants. •  By about 2500 BC, Mesopotamia was making the first beads of real glass, which have been made with the development of charcoal furnaces for smelting metal. •  The first real glass vessels have been found in sites of the Egyptian 18th Dynasty, c. 1500 BC; and the earliest known glass furnace dating to 1350 BC. •  By 700 BC all the principal techniques of making glass had been developed except for glass-blowing –that was finally achieved in c. 50 BC by the Romans. •  Ancient glass is so rare because it is a reusable material (like metals, unlike pottery), with fragments being melted down and incorporated into new glass. (pg. 336)
  31. 31. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS ARCHAEOMETALLURGY Non-Ferrous Metals •  The techniques of manufacture of artifacts made from non-ferrous materials in archaeometallurgy can be investigated in composition approach and metallographic examination. (pg. 337) •  Non-ferrous materials: copper (the most important); tin; bronze; lead; gold; silver; antimony. •  A basic understanding of copper processes is fundamental to any study of early technology. casting by the lost-wax process • complicated shapes are produced shaping native/ nugget copper • hammered • cut • polished annealing native copper • heating • hammering copper smelting from sulphide ores • more complicated than from carbonate ores alloying with tin • to make bronze smelting the oxide & carbonate ores • brightly colored melting and casting • first: single/ open mold • later: two-piece mold
  32. 32. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS ARCHAEOMETALLURGY Alloying •  Alloying can have beneficial effects and represents a great step forward in metallurgical practice. (pg. 337) •  In investigating early metallurgy, one of the most useful techniques is metallographic examination. (pg. 338) Casting •  This “one-off” method used clay as two-piece mold. When the clay is heated, the melted wax can be poured out; thus the clay becomes a hollow mold so that molten metal can be poured into it. After the clay casting is broken away, one is left with a metal copy of the original model. (a great example of casting metal objects in ceramic-molds are bronze ritual vessels from Shang dynasty, c. 1500 BC). (pg. 342) •  Molds can yield much useful information, and even the broken clay casings of the lost-wax method have occasionally been preserved. •  Slags studies can also be informative to distinguish copper smelting process from iron production. •  Place of manufacture can also be examined to fully understand the technology of piece-molds, clay models, and cores, i.e. Hou-Ma, Shaanxi Province, China, dating to 500 BC where extraordinary works of craftsmanship were produced by the Chinese this way.
  33. 33. SYNTHETIC MATERIALS ARCHAEOMETALLURGY Silver, Lead, and Platinum •  Lead is very soft with low melting point so was not used for a wide range of purposes. •  Silver are often extracted from lead ores found in nature, this process called cupellation. •  Platinum was being worked in Ecuador in the 2nd century BC and being liked for its hardness and resistance to corossion, and they often used it in combination with gold. Fine Metalwork •  By the late Bronze Age of the Aegean around 1500 BC, various wide techniques in metal working were available for working with non-ferrous metals. •  One method of metal working is plating which bond metals together, e.g. silver with copper, gold with copper, or iron and steel armor plated in gold that have been invented in late medieval. Iron and Steel •  Known as being used since 1000 BC, there are several techniques in iron-working, such as: smelting iron, cast iron, and wrought iron. •  Steel is simply iron with lower percent of carbon than iron, and both are malleable and capable of hardening by cooling. Study Case of Ethnoarchaeological Experiment of Early Steelmaking in Haya –a Bantu-speaking agricultural people living in densely populated villages on the western shore of Lake Victoria, Africa. (pg. 345)
  34. 34. REMARKS of Chapter 8: Technology •  Stone tools and ceramics dominate the archaeological record. •  Objects made of organic materials rarely survive, compared with the previous materials. •  The introduction of pottery in a culture seems to coincide with the adoption of a sedentary way of life. •  Several approaches that help researchers to understand how artifacts were made and what they were used for: Ethnography; Ethnoarchaeology; Experimental Archaeology; Microwear Study. •  A large number od stone tools can be produced while very little raw material is wasted. •  Copper was the most important metal used in early times. •  The alloying of copper to produce bronze represents a significant step forward in metallurgical practice.