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Lithics Ireland
Lithic Analysis and Consultancy

Mesolithic flake

Abstract
Worldwide, vein quartz was used as a raw material for stone tools, and in many regions quartz was the dominant raw material, if not the only raw material. While using quartz was not necessarily problematic for the communities in question, and was often preferred over other materials, the ‘problem’ with quartz is for archaeologists attempting to analyse the material, especially with coarse-grained quartz. This paper presents the results of a quartz recognition experiment conducted on volunteer participants at the 2008 World Archaeological Congress (WAC) conference held in Dublin, Ireland. The results have shown that the identification and classification of vein quartz artefacts is particularly challenging, even for analysts with substantial experience in quartz artefact analysis.

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  • Galway, Ireland