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Backwell and d’Errico speculated that at Olduvai, bone may need been used as an alternative choice to stone only when lithic raw supplies were not available. The KGA13-A1 ZA1 bone handaxe is fantastically preserved, enabling a range of macroscopic and microscopic evaluations. Morphological comparisons recommend that the raw material was a shaft fragment of a hippopotamid femur. Both the distribution sample of flake scars and the excessive frequency of cone fractures are robust indicators of deliberate flaking.
erectus individuals had been sufficiently skilled to make and use a sturdy cutting edge. Bone handaxes are additionally known from the Lower Paleolithic websites of the Levant and Europe (Table 1). Although Acheulean lithic technology dispersed to the Levant by 1.2 to 1.5 Mya and to Europe by ∼zero.7 Mya , bone handaxes occur much later in these regions. This may be as a result of they had been produced only hardly ever, as was the case at Olduvai Gorge Beds II to IV .
Except at Castel di Guido in Italy , solely single or two bone handaxes have been reported from these sites, principally produced from elephant bones. Due to the shortage of bone handaxes as properly to as the outstanding choice for elephant bones, ritual or symbolic functions rather than functional purposes have been instructed, particularly in Europe . In the past decade, the early Acheulean before 1 Mya has been a focus of energetic research.
Acheulean lithic assemblages have been proven to increase back to ∼1.75 Mya, and appreciable advances in core reduction technologies are seen by 1.5 to 1.4 Mya. Here we report a bifacially flaked bone fragment (most dimension ∼13 cm) of a hippopotamus femur from the ∼1.4 Mya sediments of the Konso Formation in southern Ethiopia. The massive variety of flake scars and their distribution pattern, together with the excessive frequency of cone fractures, point out anthropogenic flaking into handaxe-like kind. Use-wear analyses present quasi-continuous alternate microflake scars, wear polish, edge rounding, and striae patches alongside an ∼5-cm-long edge towards the handaxe tip. The striae run predominantly oblique to the edge, with some perpendicular, on each the cortical and internal faces.
The Konso bone handaxe that we report right here is made with substantial sophistication as evidenced by, for instance, the large number of small, nicely-managed cortical facet removals in forming the handaxe-like shape. The finer bifacial flaking made a relatively straight edge in a side view, which allows efficient slicing. Use-wear analysis reveals that one of the primary edges was in all probability utilized in slicing and sawing, as has been inferred for stone LCTs. This bone handaxe shows that at Konso, not only in lithic technology, but in addition in bone modification, H.