Harding, I.C., Trippier, S. and Steele, J.,
The provenancing of flint artefacts using palynological techniques
Walker, E.A., Wenban-Smith, F. and Healy, F. (eds.)
In Lithics in Action: papers from the conference Lithic Studies in the Year 2000.
Oxbow books. 262 pp, .
The provenancing of flint artefacts has proved problematic in the past. Acid maceration to extract age-diagnostic organic-walled microplankton from sedimentary materials is a technique routinely employed in both industrial hydrocarbon exploration and Quaternary studies. Here we assess the application of this technique to provenance determination of flint nodules from three locations (two in southern England and one in the Inner Hebrides, Scotland), each of which has abundant local evidence of flint utilization for artefact manufacture in prehistory. We show that, whilst not all flint nodules yield abundant or well preserved organic-walled microfossils assemblages, there is a significant potential for the use of this technique, which deserves further investigation.
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