Palaeolithic hand axe

Contributed by Richard Milton

Palaeolithic hand axe

I found this Acheulian culture hand axe in Aylsford, Kent. It is Palaeolithic in age and may be 250,000 years old. What is most striking is how decorative and artistic it is, given that its function is probably to skin and butcher game.

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  • 1. At 11:49 on 2 May 2010, Earlgrey wrote:

    What a fantastic find, my heart would have been pounding with excitement. It would be such a privilege to hold this hand axe and connect with our ancestors. To think they made such practical yet beautiful tools all those years ago, amazing........

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  • 2. At 04:32 on 19 June 2010, frobisherx wrote:

    I am surprised to see a human-made object in the UK presented as being 250,000 years old. I thought the earliest homo sapiens sapiens to leave Africa did so 60,000 years ago. Or are you saying this item was made by homo erectus?

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  • 3. At 16:23 on 13 September 2010, Richard Milton wrote:

    To frobisherx - the earliest human artefacts in Britain have been dated by Dr Nick Ashton of The British Museum as being between 800,000 and 1 million years old (Nature, 8 July 2010) so tools that are 250,000 years are not unusual. The oval or pear-shaped pattern of hand axes has not changed in a million years.

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