• Stone Tools in Secondary Refuse: Lithics from a Late Preclassic Chultun at Cuello, Belize

      McSwain, Rebecca (University of Arizona, Department of Anthropology, 1982)
      The primary purpose of this paper is to describe the lithic collection from the chultun in such a way as to provide information for interested lithic analysts and to make comparison with other collections possible. However, context can be an important element of description, and our understanding of context can influence conclusions drawn from the characteristics of the collection, In the examination of the chultun collection, therefore, each item or class of items is interpreted with a view to suggesting an explanation for its incorporation into the refuse. In general, the following alternative possibilities have been considered: 1) the item class consists of an unwanted byproduct of manufacture or resharpening; 2) the item was exhausted; 3) the item was broken, a) during use, or b) during manufacture; 2+) the item was abandoned unfinished. For some lithic items none of these possibilities seems very probable while for others several seem equally probable. Finally, the consequences and implications of the prehistoric selection of these items as refuse will be considered.