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Australian Core Tool and Scraper Tradition
CATEGORY: culture
DEFINITION: A late Pleistocene and Holocene stone tool industry of mainland Australia and Tasmania with artifacts dating from 30,000 BC (at Lake Mungo). The industry was characterized by high-domed chunky cores (called 'horsehoof cores') and steep-edge flake scrapers. The industry has close parallels in the islands of Southeast Asia.
Boscoreale
CATEGORY: site
DEFINITION: The site of two villas that were suburbs of Rome, near Pompeii, with important and sumptuous artifacts and painted rooms dating c 40 BC. These include possessions of the great patrician families of Rome, such as paintings illustrating Dionysiac mysteries, jewels, and magnificent gold and silver household furnishings. The cubiculum of one villa at Boscoreale is preserved in the Metropolitan Museum of New York City and other items are kept at the Louvre. Many of the rich hoards were accidentally saved by the volcanic catastrophe of 79 AD.
Levallois core
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A prepared core from which a single flake or blade has been produced. The technique was primarily used in the Palaeolithic and Neolithic.
bifacial core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A core that has had flakes removed from multiple faces; may be mistaken for a large biface blank.
blade core
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A flint or stone core from which blades have been struck. Such cores are typically conical or pyramidal in shape; to produce regular even blades a certain degree of preparation is needed as well as periodic rejuvenation. Both these activities produce their own distinctive debitage.
core
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: coring
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A black or gray zone in the interior cross-section of a vessel wall, usually associated with incomplete removal of carbonaceous matter from the clay during relatively low-temperature firing; not to be confused with black coring at high temperatures, which results from trapped gases and may lead to bloating
core
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: nucleus
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A piece of stone used as a blank from which flakes or blades were removed by prehistoric toolmakers. Usually it was the by-product of toolmaking, but it may also have been shaped and modified to serve as an implement in its own right. An object, such as a hand-ax, chopper, or scraper made in this way is a core tool. Cores were most often produced when hit by a pebble, antler, or bone hammer.
core borer
CATEGORY: tool
DEFINITION: A hollow tubelike instrument used to collect samples of soils, pollens, and other materials from below the surface. The cylinder of soil etc. that is collected is called the core. The core is undisturbed and the sediment contacts, soil boundaries, and structures are intact and can be described accurately.
core rejuvenation flake
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: core tablet
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A roughly round slightly wedge-shaped flake of flint with the remains of flake beds around the outside edge. Such flakes are the product of extending the life of a core that has become uneven or difficult to work but which still has the potential to yield further blades.
core sampling
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: coring
CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A subsurface detection technique using a hollow metal tube driven into the ground to lift a column of earth for stratigraphic study. This technique is used in underground or undersea exploration. A core sample is a roughly cylindrical piece of subsurface material removed by a special drill and brought to the surface for examination. Such a sample reveals the properties of underground rock, such as its porosity and permeability and allows investigation of the features of a given strata.
core tool
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: core, core-tool
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A stone tool, such as a hand-ax, chopper, or scraper, formed by chipping away flakes from a core. These tools, often large and relatively heavy, were characteristic of Paleolithic the culture. They were made by using a pebble, antler, or bone hammer.
core-formed glass
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A type of glass made by twisting melted glass around a core, often with different colors. This technique was used especially in the Classical and Hellenistic periods of the eastern Mediterranean.
coregency
CATEGORY: term
DEFINITION: A term applied to the periods during which two rulers were simultaneously in power, usually with an overlap of several years.
culture core
CATEGORY: term
DEFINITION: Technological, organizational, and ideological features most directly related to meeting the most important material needs of a society.
deep sea core
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: deep sea core dating, deep-sea core
CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A technique used in the analysis of data from oceanic sediments in which the material retrieved by the core yields information on temperature changes in the ocean through time. These changes, suggestive of climatic variation, help to chart the progress of glaciation and, since they can be dated, the technique assists in the establishment of a chronology for the Quaternary. The cores, some 5 cm. in diameter and up to 25 m. deep, are extracted from the ocean floor. The sediments they contain have a high percentage of calcium carbonate content made up of the shells of small marine organisms and these sediments build up very slowly, from 10-50 mm per 1000 years, but their sequence is uninterrupted. Since these organisms have different temperature preferences depending on species, the relative abundance of the various species changes as the temperature alters. Variations in the ratio of two oxygen isotopes in the calcium carbonate of these shells give a sensitive indicator of sea temperature at the time the organisms were alive. Through the identification of the species, and by the use of oxygen isotope analysis, a picture can be built up of variations in temperature over the millennia. Since various forms of dating (radiocarbon dating, ionium dating, uranium series dating, palaeomagnetism, protactinium/ionium dating) can be used on the carbonate in the shells, absolute dates can be given to the different levels in the core. Thus dates emerge for glaciations and interglacial periods, which can assist in the age determination of archaeological material found in association with these glacial phases. Problems with the technique are the difficulty of correlating oceanic temperature changes with continental glacial and interglacial phases, and the disturbance by animals living on the ocean bottom. The piston corer was developed in 1947.
disk-core method
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A technique in the making of stone tools in which a core is trimmed to a distinctive disk shape and flakes are then chipped off for tools.
horncore
SYNONYMS OR RELATED TERMS: horn core
CATEGORY: fauna
DEFINITION: The hard, bony inner portion of animal horn; the bony projections from the skull which support horns. The horn itself forms a tight sheath around the core, which is removed for horn working. Some archaeological sites have large accumulations of horn cores related to a horn-working industry.
horsehoof core
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A steep-edged, often large, domed core with flat based striking platforms, heavily step-flanked around their margins. Both very large and smaller varieties are found commonly on Pleistocene sites in most areas of Australia and on some mid-Holocene sites and they are considered characteristic of the Australian Core Tool and Scraper tradition. They were chopping tools mainly used in wood-working. The step-flaking could have resulted from repeated striking to remove flakes.
ice core
CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: Any boring taken from the Arctic and Antarctic polar ice caps, containing layers of compacted ice, useful for the reconstruction of paleoenvironments and paleoclimatology and as a method of absolute dating. Continuous cores, sometimes taken to the bedrock below, allow the sampling of an ice sheet through its entire history of accumulation. Because there is no melting, the layered structure of the ice preserves a continuous record of snow accumulation and chemistry, air temperature and chemistry, and fallout from volcanic, terrestrial, marine, cosmic, and man-made sources. Actual samples of ancient atmospheres are trapped in air bubbles within the ice. This record extends back more than 300,000 years.
microblade core
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: The nucleus from which micro-blades were manufactured. Usually a small barrel or conical shaped stone artifact with a flat top and one or more fluted surfaces left as scars from the removal of the microblades.
multidirectional core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A core that has had flakes removed from two or more directions.
piston corer
CATEGORY: tool
DEFINITION: A device for extracting columns of sediment from the ocean floor. Deeper cores are taken by the piston corer, which can take samples as long as 20 meters. In a piston corer, a closely fitted piston attached to the end of the lowering cable is installed inside the coring tube. When the coring tube is driven into the ocean floor, friction exerts a downward pull on the core sample. The hydrostatic pressure on the ocean bottom, however, exerts an upward pressure on the core that will work against a vacuum being created between the piston and the top of the core. The piston, in effect, provides a suction that overcomes the frictional forces acting between the sediment sample and the inside of the coring tube. The hydraulic piston corer is used by deep-sea drilling ships and can take undisturbed cores of lengths up to 200 meters. Dates for the different layers are obtained by radiocarbon, paleomagnetism, or uranium series methods.
pollen core
CATEGORY: technique
DEFINITION: A stratified sample of soil or sediment that is taken to recover the plant pollen, and hence to discover changes in the local vegetation over time. A column of soil or peat is extracted from the ground containing a continuous record of pollen grains representative of changing vegetation over a period of time - and the deeper the core, the older the pollen.
prepared core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A nodule of chert, flint, or obsidian which has been shaped to easily produce blades.
prepared-core technique
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A method of stone-tool production whereby cores themselves are shaped in order to produce flakes of a desired form, instead of the flakes being shaped after their removal from the core.
prismatic core
CATEGORY: artifact
DEFINITION: A roughly rectangular block of flint prepared for the effective removal of long narrow blades by creating a striking platform at either end so that blades could be removed in alternate directions.
pyramidal core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A single-platform core that tapers away from the platform as a result of flake removals.
rejuvenated core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A core that has been given a new platform once it has become difficult or impossible to remove flakes or blades from the previous one.
tortoise core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: In stone toolmaking, a distinctive core having the shape of a tortoise shell and characteristic of the Levalloisian culture. A nodule of flint is prepared to form a core resembling a tortoise, from which flakes are struck.
unidirectional core
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A core that has had flakes removed from only one direction.
wedge-shaped microcore
CATEGORY: lithics
DEFINITION: A core that is small and keel- or wedge-shaped and used to make microblades. They have been found in East Europe, Siberia, Mongolia, northern China, Alaska, northwestern North America, and Japan on Upper Palaeolithic sites from the close of the Pleistocene.

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