||This article may be expanded with text translated from the corresponding article in the Spanish Wikipedia. (March 2009)|
In archaeology, a hammerstone is a hard cobble used to strike off lithic flakes from a lump of tool stone during the process of lithic reduction. The hammerstone is a rather universal stone tool which appeared early in most regions of the world including Europe, India and North America. This technology was of major importance to prehistoric cultures before the age of metalworking.
A hammerstone is made of a material such as limestone or quartzite, is often ovoid in shape (to better fit the human hand), and develops telltale battering marks on one or both ends. In archaeological recovery, hammerstones are often found in association with other stone tool artifacts, debitage and/or objects of the hammer such as ore. The modern use of hammerstones is now mostly limited to flintknappers and others who wish to develop a better understanding of how stone tools were made.
- Charles Joseph Singer, Richard Raper, Trevor Illtyd Williams, A History of Technology, 1954, Clarendon Press
- Neelima Dahiya, Arts and Crafts in Northern India: From the Earliest Times to C. 200 B.C., 1986, D.K. Publishers
- Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Papers of the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, 1904
- C. Michael Hogan, Los Osos Back Bay, Megalithic Portal, editor A. Burnham (2008)