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Were they used as tools? An exploratory functional study of abraded potsherds from two pre-colonial sites on the island of Guadeloupe, northern Lesser Antilles
- Gijn, Annelou Van, Hofman, Corinne L.
- Caribbean journal of science 2008 v.44 no.1 pp. 21-35
- clay, humans, leather, Caribbean, Guadeloupe
- Abraded potsherds from Caribbean archaeological sites have rounded, square or oval shapes due to human modification. Microscopic analysis of traces of wear was performed on the abraded potsherds from two sites on Guadeloupe, Anse à la Gourde and Morel. Explorative experiments proved the sherds to be very effective for pottery production but considerably less functional for other activities. High power use wear analysis of the archaeological sherds has revealed identifiable traces of wear that are interpreted to have been due to scraping leather hard clay. The application of high power use wear analysis to broken sherds has rarely been done before and indicates that broken sherds, rather than being discarded, had a second life as tools.