7th January 2012: 6th Experimental Archaeology Conference

I attended the second day of the 6th annual Experimental Archaeology Conference hosted by York University Archaeology Dept in King's Manor with around 30 other archaeologists, including some old friends including Wendi Terry (Head of the Young Archaeologists Club) and Don Henson.

The morning consisted of five interesting lectures:

  • Microscopic Analysis of Experimentally Abraded Stone Tools
  • Controlled ballistic experiments with glass replicas of Levallois points: the effect of energy, momentum, and angle on fracture types
  • From Drawing Board to Workbench: Revisiting Viking Antler Comb Manufacture
  • Practitioner, Professional and the Public. Examining the Impact of Experimental Archaeology on Different User Groups
  • Learning and teaching in experimental archaeology

In the afternoon there was a choice of two different practical experimental sessions: Ceramics and Butchery (which I attended).


The practical session was to compare the efficiency of butchery implements from prehistoric to modern. The presenter had a number of flint tools (possibly made by John Lord) and various metal knives for us to try. A few of the audience specifically wanted to use the flint tools, but those proved difficult as there were mostly blunt.

Fortunately, I had one of my recently made sharp flint tools with me and this was enthusiastically used by a number of us to butcher the rabbit. The blade worked very well and we were quickly able to dissect the carcass, as seen on the short video below.

More thoughts on the event (one of the presenters blogs) can be found here >> click

I enjoyed the day and I am certainly planning to attend the 7th annual conference, which will jointly hosted by Cardiff University and St Fagans National History Museum, in Wales on 11/12th January 2013 and supported by EXARC.

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