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Microlith in hand.jpg

A microlith is a small stone tool, typically knapped of flint or chert, usually about three centimetres long or less; They are typically one centimetre long and half a centimetre wide when finished. Microliths were either produced from small blades (microblades) or made by snapping normal big blades in a controlled manner, which leaves a very typical piece of waste (microburin). The latter type of microliths are called geometric microliths. They can be formed as various kinds of triangles, lunate shaped, trapezes, etc. The shape of the microlith can be used for dating. Microliths were produced during the middle stone age (Mesolithic)[1] (from the end of the Ice Age (about 9200 BCE) until the introduction of agriculture (8000 BCE)). Some types of microliths, such as trapezes, were used in the Neolithic as well (the Linear Pottery culture and Funnelbeaker culture).

They were probably used as barbs on arrows, spears and other composite tools.

Microliths are found throughout Europe and Asia.


See also


  1. ^ "Hunting for food in the Stone Age". Museum of Wales.  


  • Crabtree, Don E., "An Introduction to Flint working". Occasional Papers of the Idaho Museum of Natural History, Number 28. Second Edition, Pocatello, (Idaho, 1982)
  • Whittaker, J.C., "Flint knapping: making and understanding stone tools", University of Texas Press, (Austin, 1994)
  • Joachim Hahn|Joachim, Hahn, "Erkennen und Bestimmen von Stein- und Knochenartefakten. Einf├╝hrung in die Artefaktmorphologie". Archaeologica Venatoria 10, (T├╝bingen, 1991) (in de)

External links



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