Image: Stone tools: final reduction flaking

Stone tools: final reduction flaking

Final reduction flaking: the removal of small flakes from both surfaces of the flake, often by applying pressure with a sharp piece of wood or bone. This technique was used to produce Mode 4 and 5 technologies.

Helen Beare
© Australian Museum


Mode 4 technology first appeared in Africa about 100,000 years ago. It is characterised by the production of long, thin stone flakes that were shaped into long blade knives, spearheads and other tools.

Mode 5 technology specialised in the production of very small blades (microliths) that were often used in composite tools having several parts. These tools included small-headed arrows, barbed spears and sickles. Regional variation in these tool cultures developed with an influx of new styles and techniques especially within the last 40,000 years, including the Magdalenian and Aurignacian.

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