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Brooklyn House Norton 2015-16: An Analysis and Characterisation of Chipped Stone Lithics from Excavations at Brooklyn House, Norton, North Yorkshire

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Post-excavation assessment (PXA): lithics (flint) analysis, catalogue, report and images for commercial, developer-led project in North Yorkshire, commissioned by JB Archaeology Ltd. | TimeVista Archaeology, January 2019. Monograph anticipated in
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  Brooklyn House Norton 2015  – 16  An Analysis and Characterisation of Chipped Stone Lithics from Excavations at Brooklyn House, Norton, North Yorkshire Spencer D Carter BHN15-16-L01   3 January 2019 v1  TimeVista Archaeology accepts no responsibility or liability to any third party to whom this report, or any part of it, is made known. Any such party relies upon this report entirely at their own risk. No part of this report may be reproduced by any means without permission. 85 Nutbourne Street, London W10 4HL t: 020 8962 0211 | m: 0779 86 500 86 | e: spencer.carter@timevista.co.uk | w: timevista.co.uk Document Control  Author: Spencer D Carter, TimeVista Archaeology Document ID: BNH15-16-L01 Report (PDF and MS Word document) Version 1: 03 January 2019, Submitted 03-Jan  Associated: BHN15-16-L02 Lithics Catalogue (PDF and MS Excel spreadsheet including tables) Version 1: 03 January 2019, Submitted 03-Jan Images: Figures provided as JPEG and TIFF files, Submitted 03-Jan-2019  Contents Executive Summary   1 1 Introduction 2   1.1 Purpose and scope 2 1.2 Site nomenclature 2 1.3 Methodology 2 2 General Character 4   2.1 Quantification and context 4 2.2 Raw material 4 2.3 Technology 5 2.4 Condition, taphonomy and post-depositional damage 5 2.5 Diagnostic indicators and dating 6 2.6 Spatial and stratigraphic distribution 7 2.7 Artefact biographies: form and activities 7 3 Conclusions 7 4 Illustrations  8 Bibliography 13  Appendix A: Lithics Catalogue Summaries 14  Appendix B: Lithic Definitions  16  List of Tables 1 Submitted finds composition summary 4 2 Raw material types 5 3 Lithic reduction technology 5 4 Burnt lithics 6 5 Chronological indicators 6 6 Modified formal and non-formal tool forms 7 List of Figures 1 Leaf-shaped arrowhead (fragment) | CID 012 | Early to mid-Neolithic 8 2 Oblique arrowhead | CID 008 | Late Neolithic 9 3 Thumbnail scraper | CID 005 | Late Neolithic to Early Bronze Age 10 4 Scrapers | CID 001, 006, 011 | Neolithic to Bronze Age 11 5 Gunflint | CID 003 | Post-Medieval 12  Brooklyn House Norton Analysis of Chipped Stone Lithics from 2015-16 Excavations BHN15-16-L01 1 Executive Summary  A total of 53 chipped stone lithics were provided, comprising 50 humanly modified pieces and three natural, a total of 497g. Recommendations for retention and discard are provided in the lithics catalogue, with seven items photographed as figs 1-5 in this report. Fourteen individual lithics were submitted as Small Finds, and the remaining 39 as individual finds or grouped by context (or unstratified). All the chipped stone finds, irrespective of context and recording method, are residual without any indication of a primary in situ  context or related clustering. Technology-related traits evident in the BHN collection are indicative of the Mesolithic (probably later Mesolithic) to later Bronze Age periods. The formal tools conceivably span the entire prehistoric spectrum with indications of later prehistoric, later Neolithic and Bronze Age, activity as well as a post-Medieval gunflint. The following is a summary of period-based observations, although none can be definitive in such a modestly-sized assemblage:    Mesolithic  activity, although missing specific diagnostic artefacts such as microliths or microburins, is reflected in a bladelet, a single-platform core fragment with evidence for prepared platform edges, a likely core rejuvenation tablet, and a number of blades or blade-like flakes with blade-based dorsal scars and diffuse bulbs of percussion. Early Mesolithic activity, recognising late glacial landscape topographies and environmental changes, is absent. These all suggest activity in the broader area during the earlier post-glacial periods, after recolonization, bleeding into the early Neolithic, as also represented in 1980s finds from Heslerton, to the east of Malton and Norton.    Early to mid-Neolithic  activity is best represented by the leaf-shaped arrowhead fragment and the blade-based technology evidenced in unmodified pieces.    Later Neolithic to Early Bronze Age  activity see a number of diagnostic tool forms such as: an oblique arrowhead; scrapers; notched; denticulate; utilised blades.    Later Bronze Age  activity is less well represented than the later Neolithic. However, two scrapers, the former also possibly of early Neolithic Y-shaped form, selective examples may fit in. This is the period of activity where the all-over Corded Ware pottery equates.    Post-Medieval  activity is entirely hinged on the fine post-1800 gunflint, likely from a pocket flintlock pistol. Spatial and stratigraphic distribution Given no evidence for lithic (flint) knapping episodes, and a proportionate emphasis on formal and non-formal tools over knapping debris, in residual secondary deposits, the concentration of finds is in the vicinity of the most intense archaeological activity within the grid square investigations in Area 2. Both trial trenches in 2015 and subsequent watching briefs did see lithic finds recovered. Any future interventions in the immediate area are likely to recover more lithics and the potential for in situ  contexts. The BHN collection and field engagements, by example, demonstrate the potential for broader-scale fieldwork and the systematic recovery of artefactual and associated palaeo-environmental evidence as a means of addressing core research questions that remain intractable and that require more substantial bodies of chronological data and analysis. This report assessment may also inform around future planning decisions in the immediate vicinity where in situ  deposits, domestic, funerary or otherwise, might also be encountered. Human activities In addition to the knapping  and reduction  activities in the recovered collection, but noting an absence of micro-debitage and cohesive reduction sequences, both formal and non-formal tool forms suggest activities such as: piercing ; scraping  or shaving ; activities requiring sharp-edged blades and flakes. The diversity of forms and materials overall suggests this is a relatively marginal activity area through time, exploiting flint from east-coastal beach and till deposits as well as directly available raw materials for immediate, tactical needs or a location where tools manufactured elsewhere in the landscape and a broader task-scape were deposited. Retention policy for the archive While representing a very small lithics collection, retention of the modified lithics is recommended, as indicated in the accompanying catalogue.
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