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Mattock (Antler)

Site Name Meiklewood

Classification Mattock (Antler)

Alternative Name(s) Woodyet

Canmore ID 46079

Site Number NS79NW 32

NGR NS 72 95

NGR Description NS c. 72 95

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

C14 Radiocarbon Dating


Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
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Administrative Areas

  • Council Stirling
  • Parish Gargunnock
  • Former Region Central
  • Former District Stirling
  • Former County Stirlingshire

Archaeology Notes

NS79NW 32 c. 72 95.

A Mesolithic socketed mattock-head of stag antler was found in 1877, when digging a drain 'at Woodyett, Meiklewood' (Woodyett: NS 724 954; Meiklewood: NS 727 956). It was found in association with the skull and bones of a whale. This mattock was formerly in the Anatomical Museum, Edinburgh University, along with a few bones; it was transferred to the National Museum of Antiquities of Scotland (NMAS in 1963-4 (Accession no: HLA 3). Most of the bones are in the Smith Institute, Stirling.

W Turner 1912; J G D Clark 1958; RCAHMS 1963; Proc Soc Antiq Scot 1966

The mattock is of antler-beam type, and attributed to Smith's type C. It is dated by radiocarbon to 3970+/-80bc (OxA-1159), 4130-3810 cal BC.

NMRS MS/735/1.

This perforated antler-beam mattock is held in the National Museums of Scotland (NMS) under accession number HLA 3, and is the best-known Scottish example. It is of hefty size (weighing some 508 gm) and indicates the size of deer antlers available in the Mesolithic. When found in the carse clay (with another probable example, now lost) it had the remains of a wooden haft in its perforation.

This artifact has yielded a direct AMS radiocarbon determination of 5920 +/- 80 BP (OxA-1159), which may be calibrated to 5000-4550 cal BC [rather than as above].

P Ashmore 2004; A Saville 2004.


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