Debitage confirms pitchstone knapping in Structure Eight

Pitchstone micro debitage from Structure Eight.

With Travis, it is not enough to find just one piece of pitchstone – within hours of finding the rather nice blade yesterday, he appeared clutching a finds bag from the sample sorting that contained ten examples of pitchstone micro debitage – tiny fragments that are created as a by-product of knapping the material.

This discovery confirms that pitchstone was being knapped within Structure Eight.

As reported, our lithics expert Dr Hugo Anderson-Whymark of the National Museums Scotland has noted that the blade reduction employed with the pitchstone is not characteristic of Late Neolithic flintworking in Orkney and may imply movement of not only this rare raw material from the south but also accompanied by someone with the knowledge of how to work it.

Well done Travis for increasing the number of pieces of pitchstone from the Ness by 33 per cent in a matter of hours.