Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
  #51  
Old Today, 04:58 AM
The Stafford Cripps is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,395
In my opinion there is no reason to think that the stone's shape isn't natural. You can find lots of very rounded stones like it on a pebbly beach, especially when the rock isn't stratified. It might have been carried to the find spot by humans, but I'd want to rule out local morraine as a source.
  #52  
Old Today, 05:33 AM
Musicat is offline
Charter Member
 
Join Date: Oct 1999
Location: Sturgeon Bay, WI USA
Posts: 21,381
There are beaches on Lake Michigan entirely made of such stones. If you are going to claim they were tools used by generations past, the population must have been enormous and they must have been doing a heckovalotta pounding.

More likely, they are a product of nature. A rounded stone near a lake or river or in a glacier's path is about at natural as I can ever imagine.
  #53  
Old Today, 07:18 AM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,853
I don't think anyone's saying that the rock was rounded by people, just that it looks like the already-rounded rock was used as a tool.
  #54  
Old Today, 07:24 AM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,853
Quote:
Originally Posted by crowmanyclouds View Post
Except those goose gastoliths. Damn, those are pretty.
  #55  
Old Today, 07:45 AM
The Stafford Cripps is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,395
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
I don't think anyone's saying that the rock was rounded by people, just that it looks like the already-rounded rock was used as a tool.
It certainly looks to us armchair archaeologists like it could be used as a tool of some kind, but what we're pointing out is that there is a vast number of pebbles like it in the world that have never been used as a tool, and so the odds are against it.

An expert would be able to tell if there are marks on the stone that indicate tool use (though would they be able to distinguish marks from 4000 years ago from marks from 40 years ago?) But you'd really have to look at the soil/moraine it came from to assess probabilities.
  #56  
Old Today, 08:09 AM
ftg's Avatar
ftg is offline
Member
 
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Not the PNW :-(
Posts: 20,777
When I was a kid tooling around in the high desert on motorbikes with my cousins, one of them found this nearly round piece of obsidian and gave it to me. (I'd call it "egg shaped" except that it's rounder than that. No "pointy" end.)

I still have it. A student with a rock tumbler offered to smooth it out for me (it had a sand coating on part of it) but it turned out to be snowflake obsidian and that wouldn't work.

If a glass-like substance like obsidian can get fairly round naturally, I have no problem with a granite-like rock being rounder.
  #57  
Old Today, 08:47 AM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,853
Quote:
Originally Posted by The Stafford Cripps View Post
what we're pointing out is that there is a vast number of pebbles like it in the world that have never been used as a tool
...and so wouldn't have wear marks.
Quote:
would they be able to distinguish marks from 4000 years ago from marks from 40 years ago?
In some cases, yes. Stuff like degree of weathering on exposed surfaces in the wear marks, or analysis of organic material in them. There's a couple of disciplines devoted to this, called microwear analysis and use-wear analysis.
  #58  
Old Today, 09:09 AM
The Stafford Cripps is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Oct 2001
Posts: 1,395
I'd overlooked the OP's comment on possible wear marks above. We'd still want to get an idea of aging (googling 'granite patina' doesn't help much!) and to rule out natural or modern day causes of the abrasions.
  #59  
Old Today, 09:24 AM
chela is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2004
Location: Hill House Lake Side
Posts: 1,981
Neat stones catch my eye too, I"ve found a few small tools, unifaces, preforms, small points, paleoindian possibly.

THere are a few online forums where you can learn about pre-columbian tools etc. Generally good info if your willing to search and wade through the forums.

https://forums.arrowheads.com/

http://www.treasurenet.com/forums/no...ian-artifacts/

If you want to show your rock, get good clear close ups just don't say it fits in thehand therefore it must be a tool that seems to trigger some of those guys in to yelling. But lots of info and pictures of other similiar rocks to make comparisons with and decide what you have is a tool or just a rock.
  #60  
Old Today, 09:29 AM
msmith537 is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Jan 2001
Posts: 27,749
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
I don't think anyone's saying that the rock was rounded by people, just that it looks like the already-rounded rock was used as a tool.
Space aliens?



Seriously, it looks like any old rock you might find in or around streams and rivers and whatnot.
  #61  
Old Today, 12:13 PM
MrDibble's Avatar
MrDibble is offline
Guest
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Cape Town, South Africa &
Posts: 26,853
Quote:
Originally Posted by msmith537 View Post
Seriously, it looks like any old rock you might find in or around streams and rivers and whatnot.
And your qualifications to judge are...?

Placed against my actual geology and archaeology degrees, that is?
  #62  
Old Today, 03:57 PM
Colibri's Avatar
Colibri is offline
SD Curator of Critters
Moderator
 
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Panama
Posts: 43,608
Quote:
Originally Posted by MrDibble View Post
And your qualifications to judge are...?

Placed against my actual geology and archaeology degrees, that is?
I presume this means you're never going to dispute anything I post on biology then?
Reply

Bookmarks

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is Off
HTML code is Off

Forum Jump


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 11:12 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

Send questions for Cecil Adams to: cecil@straightdope.com

Send comments about this website to: webmaster@straightdope.com

Terms of Use / Privacy Policy

Advertise on the Straight Dope!
(Your direct line to thousands of the smartest, hippest people on the planet, plus a few total dipsticks.)

Copyright 2019 STM Reader, LLC.

 
Copyright © 2017