Acheulian hafting: Proximal modification of small flint flakes at Gesher Benot Ya'aqov, Israel

Nira Alperson-Afil, Naama Goren-Inbar

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Analyses of the flint assemblages of Gesher Benot Ya'aqov have provided new insights into the technological and typological characteristics of its Acheulian Technocomplex. As these assemblages are products of small flint nodules, the flakes and flake tools are small in size. Analysis of the striking platforms of these flakes showed that modifications of different types occurred at their proximal end, resulting in the removal of the striking platform and its periphery. This phenomenon is so common that we were able to identify five distinct morphotypes of proximal modifications. We suggest that the precise and difficult task of removing a topographical high relief from the ventral face of a small flake was a specific planned goal that was aimed at acquiring a desired surface, in this case even and flat. The precision and repetition required for this, as well as the morphological diversity of the proximal ends, imply that these modifications should be interpreted as preparation for hafting.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)34-43
Number of pages10
JournalQuaternary International
StatePublished - 8 Aug 2016

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2015 Elsevier Ltd and INQUA


This study was funded by generous grants from the Israel Science Foundation (Center of Excellence Grant No. 300/06 : “The Effect of Climate Change on the Environment and Hominins of the Upper Jordan Valley between ca. 800 ka and 700 ka Ago as a Basis for Prediction of Future Scenarios”; Grant No. 2712). The study was carried out at the Institute of Archaeology, Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Mt. Scopus.

FundersFunder number
Israel Science Foundation300/06, 2712


    • Acheulian
    • Flint tools
    • Gesher Benot Ya'aqov
    • Hafting
    • Removal of striking platform


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