Chapter Title

Stone Tool Perforating and Retouch Intensity: A Neolithic Case Study

Type of Work

Book Chapter

Publication Date


Book Title

Lithic Technology: Measures of Production Use and Curation

Book Editor

William Andrefsky, Jr.


Cambridge University Press


New York, NY, USA

First Page


Last Page





A measure of retouch intensity, the EKCI, was devised based upon function and archaeological context. To arrive at the function of Pre-Pottery Neolithic A el-Khiam points from the Near East, controlled experiments were performed to determine the relative density of the contact material, which could affect use and retouch patterns. It was shown that el-Khiam points were likely used to pierce and scrape soft materials such as leather. The EKCI was then devised, measured, and tested. Experimental replication showed that the EKCI was an accurate measure of retouch intensity, and application of the EKCI to the lithic assemblage at Dhra’ reaffirmed the EKCI’s utility for analyzing PPNA archaeological assemblages. Although this curation index is effective for el-Khiam points, it may not be applicable toother hafted point types, which highlights the need for independently developed measures of retouch that account for the form, function, and context of the artifacts rather than attempting to generate universal measures of curation.

Hamilton Areas of Study


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