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HUNTER-GATHERER TOOLKITS AND TASKS: DETECTING MICROWEAR TRACES AND RESIDUES ON NORTHWESTERN EUROPEAN MESOLITHIC ARTEFACTS

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 276516

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 November 2011

  • End date

    27 February 2014

Funded under:

FP7-PEOPLE

  • Overall budget:

    € 176 685,60

  • EU contribution

    € 176 685,60

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITEIT LEIDEN

Netherlands

Objective

The aim of this project is to research wetland activity patterns in Mesolithic Northwest Europe through investigating traditions of tool technology, function and ideology. Throughout history, wetlands have provided rich economic resources for human groups, as well as holding widespread religious significance. However, little is known about the detail and range of tasks undertaken in wetland environments during a key period of early prehistory, the Mesolithic (c.9000-4000BC). The focus of the project is on relevant Irish sites with comparative data drawn from a number of important British and Dutch sites in wetland landscapes of European significance, all with exceptional preservation of organic materials. As the basis for scientifically grounded discussions of key aspects of hunter-gatherer daily life in wetland environments microscopic use-wear (microwear) and residue analyses will be carried out on a range of stone, bone and antler objects. In this way it is possible to reconstruct toolkits used for different tasks, including those that are usually archaeologically ‘invisible’ like plant-based craft activities or ornament making. Microwear and residue analysis has rarely been undertaken on Irish Mesolithic material and will greatly contribute to an understanding of daily life at that time. Such analysis also provides empirical grounds for the reconstruction of the cultural biography of stone (lithic) and organic tools. This can shed light on the social and cultural significance of material culture for hunter-gatherer communities, by revealing the social interactions between people, tools and materials at various temporal and spatial scales.

Coordinator

UNIVERSITEIT LEIDEN

Address

Rapenburg 70
2311 Ez Leiden

Netherlands

Activity type

Higher or Secondary Education Establishments

EU Contribution

€ 176 685,60

Administrative Contact

H. Cees Pafort (Mr.)

Project information

Grant agreement ID: 276516

Status

Closed project

  • Start date

    1 November 2011

  • End date

    27 February 2014

Funded under:

FP7-PEOPLE

  • Overall budget:

    € 176 685,60

  • EU contribution

    € 176 685,60

Coordinated by:

UNIVERSITEIT LEIDEN

Netherlands