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Author Topic: Was this stone object man-made?  (Read 6899 times)

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« on: 15/07/2008 01:24:31 »
While doing some revevations under my house I came across this stone.
Think it is man made, a hand axe, mace, grinding tool, or just a rock?
It fits very comfortably in the hand.

I'm in Northern Georgia, USA.  The last native people in the area were the Creek and Cherokee.
















« Last Edit: 16/07/2008 00:27:51 by chris »


 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #1 on: 15/07/2008 07:40:47 »
I don't know much about this sort of thing, but I'm not sure it's an axe.

This axe was found in Wales


(image from http://www.swanseaheritage.net/

And this 1 in Slovenia


(image from Wikipedia)

As you can see, there is quite a difference. However, yours certainly does look as if it was shaped for a purpose. I'm wondering if it's a knife. Is there any flint in your area? If not, then it's quite possible knives were made from stone. Also, you say it fits comfortably in the hand and that may point to it being a knife.

« Last Edit: 15/07/2008 07:47:58 by DoctorBeaver »
 

blakestyger

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #2 on: 15/07/2008 09:02:27 »
This is interesting - the two axes that DoctorBeaver shows posses a high degree of symmetry whereas the American specimen is more irregular. Symmetry is ubiquitous in stone tools like this - I've handled tools from the Olduvai site (H habilis) that possessed it to a high degree.
However, it does appear to have a well defined (if a bit blunt) cutting edge. Also. not being flint it doesn't have the characteristic bulbs of percussion where the stone was struck; which is helpful usually.
It'd be good if an archaeologist could see this - could you take it to a museum?
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #3 on: 15/07/2008 09:12:49 »
blakestyger - have you been to Olduvai?
 

lyner

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #4 on: 15/07/2008 13:39:05 »
You'll have to take it to your local anthropologist.
It does appear to have marks of 'lapping' along the blade side so you could be lucky.
 

blakestyger

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #5 on: 15/07/2008 14:52:28 »
blakestyger - have you been to Olduvai?

No I haven't - I did an archaeology diploma at Cambridge and we had access to the University teaching collection at the Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology for some of our practical work; that is where the Olduvai stuff was.

Sorry if I gave a wrong impression there.
« Last Edit: 15/07/2008 19:56:33 by blakestyger »
 

Offline AllenG

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #6 on: 15/07/2008 18:09:47 »
There is no flint in the area. 
the "blade edged" to me appears to have been ground to shape.
Also (at least in my mind) the "shank" of the blade seems to have been shaped to fit comfortably in the hand.

There is an archaeology center at the University of Georgia, about an hour from here. 
I'll keep the "axe" in the car so the next time I'm in Athens I'll have no excuse to take it by.

I posted it on two archaeology sites (Stonepages in the UK, and one here in the US) both require mod approval to start threads though.
It may be quite a while before I hear responses back from either.

Thanks guys.
 

Offline AllenG

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #7 on: 15/07/2008 18:19:45 »
A quick googling of stone axe does show that most, although not all, stone axes are very finished and symmeterial.
Some however appear to be quite rough.


^^^
Image snagged from Edo Museum.

Again thanks.
 

blakestyger

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Re: Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #8 on: 15/07/2008 19:58:57 »
That top middle one does look a bit like yours, nice. The highly polished ones are thought to be ceremonial usually.
 

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #9 on: 16/07/2008 01:46:59 »
Chris,
I'll make a point on making my thread titles a little more accurate.
No promises on the proper UK spelling though. ;)
 

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #10 on: 17/07/2008 06:09:24 »
I have received one reply from a few postings on some archaeology boards (light traffic on those).
Current guess is that it is a digging tool.

Quote from: Steve Valentine
It does appear to have some chipping along the sides and some use polish along the blade edge. My guess would be a rough Hoe or Digging Tool of some kind, but definitely an artifact.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #11 on: 17/07/2008 07:53:38 »
That sounds reasonable
 

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #12 on: 17/07/2008 19:42:45 »
I'm a watered down Creek/Cherokee.
A friend hypothesized that it could have been made or used by one of my ancestors, which would be rather nifty.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #13 on: 17/07/2008 21:05:18 »
I'm a watered down Creek/Cherokee.
A friend hypothesized that it could have been made or used by one of my ancestors, which would be rather nifty.

 

blakestyger

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #14 on: 17/07/2008 21:14:42 »
That's interesting. Did the Creek and Cherokee do some cultivation of some sort - what did they dig for?
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #15 on: 17/07/2008 21:44:21 »
One thing I know about the Cherokee is that they were monotheistic (Their God was called Yowa). They did, though, have animistic beliefs. Interestingly, they would never keep anything snakelike in their homes as they believed snakes stopped blessings being received.

(I have written that in the past tense as I'm not sure if such beliefs are still held by some)
 

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #16 on: 17/07/2008 22:08:14 »
That's interesting. Did the Creek and Cherokee do some cultivation of some sort - what did they dig for?
Yes, they lived in permanent/simi-permanent villages and practiced agriculture.
 

Offline AllenG

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #17 on: 17/07/2008 22:17:37 »
One thing I know about the Cherokee is that they were monotheistic (Their God was called Yowa). They did, though, have animistic beliefs. Interestingly, they would never keep anything snakelike in their homes as they believed snakes stopped blessings being received.

(I have written that in the past tense as I'm not sure if such beliefs are still held by some)

Sorta monotheistic.
The Cherokee pantheon had a greater god and many, for lack of a better term, dimi-gods.
It was not so divergent from Christianity that musket point conversions were impossible.
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #18 on: 18/07/2008 07:50:48 »
One thing I know about the Cherokee is that they were monotheistic (Their God was called Yowa). They did, though, have animistic beliefs. Interestingly, they would never keep anything snakelike in their homes as they believed snakes stopped blessings being received.

(I have written that in the past tense as I'm not sure if such beliefs are still held by some)

Sorta monotheistic.
The Cherokee pantheon had a greater god and many, for lack of a better term, dimi-gods.
It was not so divergent from Christianity that musket point conversions were impossible.

Sorry, but I beg to differ. The Cherokee had many spirits they revered, but they were not thought of as gods. It was the Christians who classified them as heathen gods.
 

blakestyger

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #19 on: 18/07/2008 09:49:08 »
It was not so divergent from Christianity that musket point conversions were impossible.

Jesuits - they were never far away. Ian Paisley called them 'the SS of the Vatican'  ;D
 

Offline DoctorBeaver

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Was this stone object man-made?
« Reply #20 on: 18/07/2008 14:32:07 »
I though Jesuits were a cross between Jesus and Inuits  ???
 

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Was this stone object man-made?
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