Exhibition Objects

Welcome to Exploring Objects. Here you can explore the rich collection of objects that have been unearthed from the Creswell Heritage Area. To find an object, type in the words that best describe what you are looking for and click ‘Search’

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Creswellian tools © 2000 Creswell Heritage Trust

Creswellian tools

Upper Palaeolithic tools from Robin Hood Cave, 12,600 - 12,300 years old. Made on flint blades.

This collection of flint tools was excavated by John Campbell in July 1969 from the scree slope outside the west entrance to Robin Hood Cave. They are believed to date to between 12,600 and 12,300 years old.

The group includes a range of different tools. The three pieces in the top line are known as backed blades on account of the abrupt, blunting retouch on the back of each blade. The blade on the left is a Creswell point although it is likely to have been used as a knife blade, set in a handle, and not a projectile point. The remaining two blades are broken pieces of either Creswell points or Cheddar points. The blade on the right has a clear shoulder on its left side and may be described as a shouldered point.

Along the bottom line is an end scraper (left) with a convex edge at the upper end likely to have been used to clean hides or pelts. In the middle is a flint burin. Burins were used largely to work bone and antler and are ideal for cutting out splinters to make into needles and weapon heads. They were also used to engrave pictures and patterns on bone. Bottom right, is the broken tip of a thick blade which has been rounded by use. Recent discussion of similar worn pieces from the Netherlands suggests that this wear may be due to rubbing against pyrites during fire making. To the right of these objects is a flint blade whose edges show clear traces of heavy use. Its size and shape would make it an ideal knife.

Glossary: Anatomically modern humans, Artefact, Assemblage, Backed blade, Backing, Biface, Blade, Bronze Age, Burin, Convex, Cordiform, Core, Cortex, Creswellian, Culture, Debitage, Devensian, Early Upper Palaeolithic, Flake, Flake tool, Glacial, Hafting, Handaxe, Holocene, Ice Age, Interglacial, Late Upper Palaeolithic, Mesolithic, Middle Palaeolithic, Neanderthal, Palaeolithic, Pleistocene, Projectile, Retouch, Scraper, Scree, Sediment, Shouldered point, Tool, Upper Palaeolithic