Stone Age Artifacts, Paleolithic, Neolithic, Mousterian, Mesolithic age tools



The Stone Age Artifacts Gallery

Cultural Periods / Industries

European Cultures / Industries


1.4 million to 125,000 (Ipswichian interglacial) years ago 

Core tool industry, tools were made by removing flakes from cores
Characteristic stone tools:
Hand axes (bifaces )
Flake tools
Compare to
Clactonian stone-tool assemblages.

34,000 to 27,000 years ago
contemporaneous with Châtelperronian 
Characteristic stone tools:
dominated by blade tools 
carinate scrapers on blocks 
scaled marginal retouch 
dihedral burins 
distinctive bone points
few or no typical Mousterian forms 

35,000 to 30,000 years ago 
direct typological descendent of Mousterian of Acheulian Tradition (MTA)
Characteristic stone tools:
backed stone knives (Mousterian) 
Châtelperron point 
bone points 

500,000 to 125,000  years ago
Name given to the stone tools of the Lower Paleolithic period in Europe,  made by Homo erectus. 
Characteristic stone tools:
Scrapers and knives are made from flakes chipped off of cores from alternating directions; the cores themselves were often used as choppers. 
Compare to
Acheulian stone-tool assemblages.

27,000 to 22,000 years ago 
material culture
Characteristic stone tools:
bone points 
notched, sharpened blades 
Gravette point 
Art: "Venus" figurines

19,000 to 9,000 years ago 
very cold (20,000) to warming (after 14,000) to temperate (8,000) 
Characteristic stone tools:
Early Magdalenian
pressure-flaked bone-heads 
bas-relief sculpture (France and Spain) 
Late Magdalenian
apogee of cave and antler art 
skillful bone and antler work 
most elaborate development in France and Spain 

Mesolithic Period
10,000 to 6,000 years ago

115,000 years ago (Wurm I) 
Looks like Mousterian assemblage with Acheulean handaxes 
Characteristic stone tools:
Lanceolate handaxe with globular butt and concave edges 
otherwise assemblage resembles that of Mousterian of Acheulian Tradition (MTA) 
Occurs at the end of the European Middle Paleolithic.

125,000 - 35,000 yeas ago
Associated with the Neandertals
Characteristic stone tools:
Mousterian Industry is a prepared-core flake-tool industry, tools were made from flakes removed from a core that had been prepared (shaped) so that the flake removed formed a particular shape.  (i.e Levallois core preparation flakes)
Side, Transversal, Convergent, Double Scrapers
Levallois and Mousterian points
Points and Blades (Knifes)
Mousterian Industries (assemblages) defined in France:
Micoquian industry 
Charentian Mousterian
further divided into Quina and Ferrassie based on types of scrapers.
Denticulate Mousterian 
Mousterian of Acheulian Tradition (MTA)

Neolithic Period
6,000 to 3,500 years ago

26,000 to 20,000 years ago 
French counterpart to the Gravettian
Characteristic stone tools:
Gravette points, truncated blades, noailles burins, truncated elements and Font Robert points with truncation and dihedral burin

25,000 to 16,000 years ago 
material culture
Characteristic stone tools:
Well made bifacial tools (Solutrean points) 
backed points and blades 
Cave art 

African Cultures / Industries

45,000 to 24,000 years ago 
North African (Saharan) culture
Characteristic stone tools:
Pressure-flaked tanged points. 

45,000 to 24,000 years ago 
North African (Mediterranean Coast).

Southern African culture (open plains) 
resembles Mousterian of Acheulian Tradition
Characteristic stone tools:
Levallois points 
Use of classic Levallois technique for preparation of cores.

Howieson's Poort
90,000 to 50,000 years ago 
South African culture
Characteristic stone tools:
Microlithic industry. 

Early Neolithic
12,000 to 7,900 years ago
The El Nabta, El Ghorab, El Adam types.
Often located adjacent to shallow basins and ponds . 
A variety of lithic and bone tools occur in these sites, including the first sickles, stemmed points with pointed and retouched bases, perforators, burins, scrapers, notched pieces, bone points, and scalene triangles measuring about one centimeter, often made on reused Middle Paleolithic artifacts.  Grinding stones and sherds of pottery are more numerous than in earlier sites.

Middle Neolithic
7,700 to 6,500 years ago
Marked by the much greater abundance of pottery.
Lithic tools are more often made of local rocks.
Animal husbandry is wide spread.

Late Neolithic
6,500 to 5,000 years ago
Late Neolithic tools are made on "side-blow flakes" that have been retouched into denticulates and notched pieces
There are also a few bifacial arrowheads, often with tapering stems, or rarely with concave bases similar to those found in the Fayum Neolithic.

2.5 million years ago (1st stone tools appear)
East Africa, (i.e. Olduvai Gorge)
Characteristic stone tools: 
Pebble tools
Chopping tools (Hand Axes)
Flake tools

45,000 to 30,000 years ago
Central and eastern African (forested areas) culture 
Characteristic stone tools:
Sangoan pick 
Large plane 
Discoidal cores (Levallois techique cores) 

Denmark: Cultures / Industries

Hamburg Culture: approximately 13,000 to 12,000 BC
Federmesser Culture: 12,000 to 11,400 BC
Bromme Culture: 11,400 to 10,200 BC
Ahrensburg Culture: 10,200 to 8,900 BC
Maglemose Culture: 8,900 to 6,400 BC
Kongemose Culture: 6,400 to 5,400 BC
Ertebölle Culture: 5,400 to 3,900 BC
Dolmen Period: 3,900 to 3,400 BC
(Funnel beaker culture I)
Passage Grave Culture: 3,400 to 2,800 BC
(Funnel beaker culture II)
Single Grave Culture: 2,800 to 2,400 BC
Pitware Culture: 2,800 to 2,600 BC
Bell-beaker Culture: 2,400 to 2,000 BC
Dagger Period: 2,400 to 1,800 BC

Each artifact is unique and no two pieces are quite the same, similar to snowflakes.  So once an item is purchased, there usually is not another artifact to replace it.

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Fishing Points / Arrowheads

  Spear Points / Blades

Danish Axes

Scrapers / Denticulates
Serrated / Notched


Knives / Blades


   Hand Axes / Choppers

     Cores / Hammer Stones

Flakes Tools
Mousterian Points
Miscellaneous Artifacts