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Figure 3.15 'Salami slice' technique offtake production, as found in many Quina-Mousterian industries. After Turq 1992a.

flakes typical of Quina-Mousterian assemblages. After Turq 1992a.

2. The second strategy is more complex and involved additional stages in the initial preparation and flaking of the nodules (Fig. 3.16). Typically, the flaking commenced by removing one major preparatory flake from one end of the nodule and then employing this initial flake surface as a prepared striking platform for the removal of one or more elongated flakes extending vertically down the face of the nodule (Turq 1989b). Several of the flakes produced in this way could have been used directly as blanks for typical Quina tools especially where the flakes retained a substantial, naturally blunted back formed by the original cortex retained along one edge of the flake. In the subsequent stages of flaking these elongated, longitudinal flake removals could then be used to provide a prepared striking platform for further flake removals extending transversely across the breadth of the core in much the same way as in the simpler salami-slice techniques. In certain respects, therefore, this technique was a slightly more complex variant of the salami-slice method but with two significant differences; first, the majority of the flakes would show clear traces of a simple prepared striking platform as opposed to purely cortical platforms in the case of the salami-slice procedures; second, the flakes were removed exclusively from a single, predetermined direction through the nodule, rather than from a succession of different points extending around the perimeter of the nodule (Turq 1988b, 1989b). Several of the flake removals, therefore, would tend to show a simple, longitudinal pattern of flake scars on their dorsal surfaces and be more elongated or rectangular than the flakes produced from the simpler salami-slice techniques.

As Turq points out, there were several other variants but all involved essentially minor modifications of the two basic strategies described above. His argument is that all these strategies were apparently deliberate and preconceived in the sense that they were all oriented towards the production of flakes which were especially suitable for the production of distinctively Quina tools - i.e. flakes in which the maximum thickness was located directly opposite the eventual, retouched edge of the finished tool (Fig. 3.14). In many ways the flaking strategies are much simpler than those involved in the conventional forms of Levallois technology, requiring fewer steps in the initial stages of preparing both the dorsal surfaces of the cores and the associated striking platforms.

But as Turq points out, this hardly reduces the level of intentionality or predetermination of the strategies which lay behind the flake production or the relative efficiency of the techniques for the purposes for which they were intended. Turq (1989b) argues that the level of success achieved in this kind of flaking, in the sense of producing flakes which were immediately suitable for retouching into tools, seems to have been substantially higher than that achieved in most Levallois techniques. According to his estimates, these Quina strategies seem to have produced in the region of 60-75 percent of immediately usable flakes, as opposed to around 15-25 percent in most Levallois methods (cf. Geneste 1985: 257=9). He concludes that these procedures were not merely deliberate and consciously structured but also highly economical in producing specific forms of flake blanks suitable for a particular range of retouched tool forms from particular varieties of available raw materials.

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