Type:  Acheulean Handaxe

Location: England



MoST ID: 5522

Pedestal Link: https://une.pedestal3d.com/r/bgSkSCN7_C

Model Author:  Denéa Buckingham

This flint Acheulean handaxe thought to be from England.  It likely dates to ca. 500,000-330,000 BP.  The antiquarian label on the artefact is unclear and the location where it was discovered is unknown.

The artefact is curated by the Australian Institute of Archaeology, catalogue no. IA24.148.

This handaxe was made by a mixture of invasive and non-invasive hard-hammer percussion flaking.  The proximal end of the handaxe is less reduced than the distal end, and a small patch of the chalky the cortex from the original flint nodule is still present.  The handaxe is heavily patinated to a white colour; the original flint was dark gray or black.

By ca. 600,000-700,000, hominins began expanding out of the Iberian peninsula and crossed the Pyrenees Mountains into the region of modern France.  Famous handaxe sites in France include the type site for the Acheulean, St Acheul, in gravel deposits on the Somme River; Terra Amata, in Nice on the French Riviera; and La Noira, on a tributary of the lower Loire River.  By 500,000 BP, Acheulean hominins were living what is now southern Britain (the English Channel did not exist at this time), most notably at Boxgrove in West Sussex, which preserves the best-preserved Late Acheulean handaxe-making localities so far discovered.  Acheulean handaxe are found widely across the southern UK, including the famous finds at Hoxne, and a large modern sculpture of a handaxe commemorates the artefacts found in the Barnfield Pit near Swanscombe.