The use of thrusting percussion tools is well documented in the non-human primates. Many researches and publications focus on the study of this type of behavior due to its cognitive implications for the understanding of the evolution of the human and non-human primates. However, the use of thrusting percussion tools is rarely documented in the Paleolithic contexts. This type of action is often restricted to the identification of the hammerstones involved in the production of stone tools by flaking/shaping. This special issue is the result of a session of the XVIIIth international congress UISPP (Paris, 2018) and it offers a more complex picture than expected regarding the thrusting percussion during the Paleolithic. The first section of the particular publication is dedicated to the methods that allow the identification of the thrusting percussion tools (morpho-function, experimental archaeology, use-wear analysis) through: 1) their modification due to the type of raw material they are made (bone, stone) and the material they worked (stone, bone, wood, ground….); and 2) the morphology of their active edge (linear, point-like, spheroid). The second part is dedicated to the data originated by these methods of analysis that highlight the different types of thrusting percussion tools: hammerstones (hard/soft), retouchers (bone, stone), shaped pebbles, bifaces, pickaxes, cleavers, active edges (unshaped or shaped) of blades or flakes, and reused tools (cores, flake or biface surface….). The studies presented in this issue allow us to create a dedicated terminology for the thrusting percussion tools. These researches demonstrate that the thrusting percussion tradition has deep roots in the human past, and is linked to many different tools. In the end, it is important to mention that this publication underlines the great amount of the information that these types of tools may provide. Additionally, it attests the need to integrate their study with all the other approaches scholars apply for interpreting the technological and subsistence behavior of the Paleolithic human communities.
Cyril VIALLET et al.165-173, Published on 15 March 2021, art. 20 (10)
Cyrielle MATHIAS et al.175-198, Published on 17 March 2021, art. 20 (11)