Implement or tool in the form of a flake

Quartzite implement in the form of a blade or flake obtained through direct impact by a hard percussor on a lithic core originally in the form of a river pebble. A series of direct blows can be seen long the edges of the dorsal surface of the piece.

The two distinct faces of the flake can be identified. The first is the ventral surface, which is almost flat, and where we can see the bulb of percussion which emerges immediately after the blow in the area where this has been applied. It also shows the cracking ripples, those produced by the passage of waves from the impact along the fracture surface. In contrast, the dorsal surface shows the negative scars from previous blades which have been detached from the lithic core and the negatives of the bulb and the ripples of percussion.

In the case of the piece in question, the butt of the striking platform, the fragment where the percussor struck a blow, is defined as facetted as it has various surfaces, the result of preparation or previous detachment of a flake.

We are dealing here with a prehistoric implement, specifically from the Lower Palaeolithic, a time when the first human productions were made. In the following eras, the Middle and Upper Palaeolithic, manufacture would be perfected giving rise to scrapers, bifaces, axe heads, arrow and spear heads.

In many places in the Sahara, always in locations near lake systems, lithic material of this sort has been found near veins of flint, quartzite and sedimentary rock, places where large Lower Palaeolithic sites are abundant, above all, those of the Acheulean stone tool industry and later epochs. This material has been well preserved thanks to the dryness of the climate and the protection of the layers of sand.

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