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2019-10-10 18:28:19   •   ID: 2128

A Jomon tanged Scraper from Hokkaido

Figure 1
Figure 2
Figure 3
Formally this is a tanged scraper from the Jormon culture in Japan (Hokkaido region).

The tang is 1,6 cm long and the bifacial scraper, which may be intentionally broken on the left end is 6,3 cm long.

The artifact is not made from Obsidian, the most prominent raw material in Japan, but of a homogeneous greenish flint-maybe because we are talking about a domestic expedient tool. Similar tanged scrapers were described from the Jormon Moroiso phase.

Anyhow it remains unclear, if the original artifact was broken, and reworked from a very large tanged Dagger (such items are known from the Archipelago, especially from Hokkaido).

Such a hypothetical dagger must have been 15-20 cm long- indeed they existed- see the last external link-first picture - an excellent piece of workmen ship.

The most astonishing characteristic of the tool, displayed in this post, is the tang, which in every aspect resembles the tang of an "Aterian" artifact.

Aterian tools are uni-or bifacially retouched, yielding a roughly rhomboid or biconvex cross-section of the Tang (Figure 3) and see here 1273 , here 1272 , and here: 1052

Regarding the 120-30 k.a.temporal gap between the "Aterian" or "Levallois based Middle Stone age with tangs" and the large geographical distance between the two entities, this similarities are certainly a convergence phenomenon, due to the fact that the knappers wanted to design a stable tang, avoiding early breakage.

The most interesting difference between the Jomon and Aterian tangs is, that the Aterian tangs are strictly axial, while the Jomon tangs can be axial or lateral to the working edge.

I did not find anything about the operational sequence that finally led to the Jomon tangs- it would be exciting!

Regarding the sparse scientific literature about Jormon and the rare pics- you have to explore the net by yourself-good luck!

Suggested Reading:

Junku Habu: ancient Jomon of Japan (2004): Far the best for an English speaking Audience- brings together Japanese and Angloamerican approaches).