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20020710_mal_048 | by open_knowledge
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Obsidian flaked with great skill into a point; its tang is shaped for insertion into a hollow shaft of wood. Obsidian is the best material for creating sharp edges. The glassy black stone was available in the volcanic mountains east of Çatalhöyük. Other stone materials that could be used to make sharp-edged tools included flint, but that was not common in this area of the world. A beautiful point like this had its own life history, from the time it was created to the time it was deposited in the ground. Trace analysis will help pinpoint the exact source of the obsidian. Contact traces such as wear patterns will indicate whether it was used or repaired. This one was deposited in good condition, possibly as part of a hidden cache in the floor of Building 3.

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Taken on July 10, 2002