Type:  Trifacial Point

Location: Denmark



MoST ID: 2788

Pedestal Link: https://une.pedestal3d.com/r/1jXFP1iHSr

Model Author:  Emma Watt

This flint trifacial arrowhead from Denmark dates to the Pitted Ware phase of southern Scandinavia, ca. 4400-5400 BP.  The Pitted Ware people followed a broad-spectrum hunting and gathering economy focused on marine resources.

This arrowhead is classified as Type C.  It was shaped by pressure flaking on a blade with a relatively thick triangular cross section.  Flaking is mostly bifacial along the edges of the point, with the flakes terminated at mid-line without ‘rolling over’.  This created an enhanced ridge down the centre of the dorsal face.  The ridge was used as a platform for bifacial flaking at the tip and base of the point; this created three bifacially-flaked platforms, and a ‘trihedral’ or ‘trifacial’ morphology.

Tanged flint arrowheads are considered an iconic feature of the Neolithic Pitted Ware phase in northeastern Denmark and southern Sweden.  They appear to have been introduced into the region from southern Norway where they occur earlier (ca. 5300-6000 BP).  Prior to this, in the Mesolithic and early Neolithic, people in the region used transverse-mounted microliths as arrowheads. Variations occur within the category of Pitted Ware tanged points; according to one study, Type A points (short and wide points made on minimally-modified blades) were used in hunting, Type B points (points with mixed features from Types A and C) were multifunctional tools, and Type C points (long and slender with fully-flaked faces) were used in warfare.  The flint arrowheads were collected and recycled in later periods and they occur in large numbers in megalithic tombs in eastern Denmark.  Type C arrowheads have been found measuring up to 180 mm long, although most measure around 63 mm long.