Een onderzoek naar de depositie van vuurstenen bijlen


  • A. ter Wal


This paper is a study of the deposition of post-Mesolithic flint axes in the province of Drenthe. These axes were in use during a long period, from the early Neollithic (4900-4200 BC) to the early Bronze Age (2000- 1800BC), or even later. Most of the flint axes in Drenthe can be attributed to Funnel Beaker Culture, Single Grave Culture and Bell Beaker Culture (3400-2000 BC), however.

The variations in type, dimensions and find circumstances within this group of artefacts are great. The aim of this study is to find out whether significant differences in type, dimensions, etc. exist between axes from different find contexts. Both cultural contexts (graves, multiple finds, single finds) and physical contexts (in particular dry environments as opposed to wet ones) are included. In order to detect changes in the meaning behind the deposition of axes during the Neolithic, it is necessary to distinguish axes belonging to different cultures. To a certain degree this can be done on basis of types, dimensions, indices, and non-metrical characteristics, such as Kantenschliff, pecking, irregular shaping, and contour-following polish.

The study shows that at least some of the depositions, both of single axes and of multiple finds, were deliberate, in most cases in or near humid places. These depositions probably had a ritual meaning.