Geologie en Mijnbouw

, Volume 78, Issue 2, pp 147–164 | Cite as

Making fire in the Stone Age: flint and pyrite

  • Dick Stapert
  • Lykke Johansen


Flint implements with rounded ends, excavated at several Late Palaeolithic sites in Denmark and the Netherlands, are described and interpreted as strike-a-lights used in combination with pyrites. Experiments were carried out; the use-wear traces on the experimental pieces are similar to those occurring on the prehistoric specimens. It is concluded that the pyrite technique for fire production most probably predated wood-on-wood techniques, both in Europe and Greenland.

Europe experimental archaeology flint implements fire production Greenland pyrite Stone Age use-wear traces 


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Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1999

Authors and Affiliations

  • Dick Stapert
    • 1
  • Lykke Johansen
    • 2
  1. 1.Groningen Institute of ArchaeologyER Groningenthe Netherlands
  2. 2.Institut for Arkæologi og EtnologiKøbenhavn KDenmark

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