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Title: A use-wear interpretation of the most common raw materials from the Olduvai Gorge: Naibor Soit quartzite
Authors: Bello Alonso, Patricia
Ríos Garaizar, Joseba
Panera Gallego, Joaquín
Pérez-González, Alfredo
Rubio Jara, Susana
Rojas Mendoza, Raquel
Domínguez-Rodrigo, Manuel
Baquedano, Enrique
Santonja, Manuel
Keywords: Olduvai Gorge;Naibor Soit quartzite;Use-wear;Reference collection;Experimental protocol
Issue Date: Aug-2019
Publisher: Elsevier
Citation: Quaternary International, 2019, 526, 169-192
Abstract: This paper presents for the first time an experimental protocol for the assessment of use-wear produced when using Precambrian and metamorphic white Naibor Soit quartzite (NQ) flakes. NQ is the most recurrent raw material from the archaeological sites of the Olduvai Gorge during the Early Stone Age (ESA). The objective of this study is to provide a preliminary description of the experimentally produced use-wear traces that can be applied to the analysis of sites like the Acheulean site of Thiongo Korongo (TK, Olduvai Gorge, Tanzania) or other sites from Olduvai where NQ was used to tool production. This experimental protocol incorporates a broad range to tasks including plant processing (underground storage organs [USOs], wood, herbaceous plants, and canes) and carcass processing (butchery and bone processing). The most novel activity of this experimental protocol is the processing of USOs. For this we have replicated different steps of tuber processing including the cutting, peeling, and scraping of five varieties of USOs (Beta vulgaris, Daucus carota, Ipomoea batatas, Pastinaca sativa and Zingiber, officinale) with differences in hardness, fibrosity, water content, and peel regularity. After analysing micro and macro-wear traces on the experimental flakes, several criteria for distinguishing between different activities (scraping, cutting, peeling, sawing, cutting, butchery) and the different materials being processed were identified. These criteria are based on the presence, continuity, and morphology of macro-scars along with the presence, distribution, nature, and intensity of different micro traces (micro-scars, attrition, striations, pits, rounding, polish). Additionally, we have identified several processes that limit the formation of traces, including the tendency of some activities to weaken NQ edges and shorten the duration of use.
ISSN: 1040-6182
DOI: 10.1016/j.quaint.2019.09.025
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Type: Article
Appears in Collections:Arqueología

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