A Neolithic Chinese polished axe head carved from a black-green stone. The axe is trapezoid in outline with a straightened blade and a narrow-rounded end. The bladed end has been polished to a sharp edge, whilst the back appears less refined with surface irregularities.
Date: Circa 3500-2000 BC Provenance: From a private west country collection, Bath, UK, 1990's. Condition: Fine condition, earthly encrustations to one side.
The Neolithic period was one of greatest technological developments in human evolution. During this age, stone was used to make a wide variety of tools, the gradual advancement of which culminated in the invention of metal implements. The Neolithic period saw the advent of farming, which led to the First Agricultural Revolution: the transition from a lifestyle of hunting and gathering to one of agriculture and settlement. During this time, communities began to cultivate land and to domesticate animals.
Many of the artefacts recovered from this period are axes, which were used to cut down trees and to shape timber for construction. Such stone would have been tied to a wooden handle.
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