Distance from Renamon source

Figure 5.14 Variable frequencies of cores recorded in the different Middle Palaeolithic sites studied by Geneste in the Euche valley (see Fig. 5.13), located at varying distances from two main raw material sources. The graphs appear to reflect a progressive reduction in the frequencies of cores (expressed as a percentage of the total lithic assemblages) with increasing distances from the two raw material sources. After Geneste 1985.

area of southern Israel, which again show a progressive decrease in core frequencies with increasing distance from flint supplies (Mun-day 1976; Marks 1988). These patterns are hardly surprising and presumably reflect simply the natural disinclination of human groups to transport heavy and bulky flint nodules over distances of more than 3-4 km; the obvious reaction would be to produce the maximum number of flakes from each nodule, and therefore to reduce the cores to progessively smaller forms. The data nevertheless provide a further indication of the effects of raw material transportion on the overall composition of lithic assemblages.

4. One final illustration of the way in which increasing distance from raw material supplies can influence patterns of use on occupation sites has been provided recently by Liliane Meignen in her study of the classic Quina-Mousterian industries from the site of Marillac in the Central Charente (Meignen 1988; Meignen & Vandermeersch 1986). In this case raw materials were obtained from two major sources, one located immediately adjacent to the site in the local outcrops of Jurassic flint and the other from outcrops of much better quality Cretaceous flint from sources 15-20 km to the south-west. As expected from the results described earlier, this led to major contrasts in the patterns of utilization of the two materials, with the more distant and better quality materials accounting for a much higher proportion of the total component of retouched tools on the site and with correspondingly much lower frequencies of cortical flakes and general flaking debris (Fig. 5.15). Meignen's main emphasis, however, is on the evidence for intensive patterns of reworking and resharp-ening of retouched tools on the site. She points out that this can be documented for many of the typical Quina-type racloirs, both by the very steep, abrupt nature of the retouched edges on many of the tools and the recovery of several examples of typical edge-resharpening flakes. According to Meignen's analysis, this policy of systematic resharpen-ing of the edges of Quina racloirs was

Local flint

Distant flint

Debitage flakes

Local flint

Debitage flakes

Cortical Flakes

Retouched tools

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