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Title: Activities at Flixton Island : integrating scientific approaches for the study of early Mesolithic living at ephemeral sites
Author: Rowley, Charlotte Catherine Aneliese
ISNI:       0000 0004 7227 2961
Awarding Body: University of York
Current Institution: University of York
Date of Award: 2017
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This thesis presents the novel analysis of the extensive lithic assemblage at the Early Mesolithic site of Flixton Island 2, Flixton, Yorkshire, and the geochemical analysis program carried out alongside that. The research project aimed to evaluate whether the use of several methods of analysis on sediments and lithics could produce a better understanding of activity areas and spatial patterning than had previously been achieved for Mesolithic dryland sites. A complementary case study was undertaken at Star Carr. More than 20,000 lithic artefacts were typologically analysed to define the nature of the Long Blade and Early Mesolithic lithics assemblages from Flixton Island 2. Sediment samples associated with the Mesolithic lithics assemblage were analysed using general geochemical tests (colour and texture assessment, pH, calcium carbonate presence, and phosphate presence) alongside elemental characterisation using inductively-coupled plasma atomic-emission spectroscopy (ICP-AES) and portable x-ray fluorescence (pXRF). Spatial statistical methods were applied to explore and analyse the data. At the more ephemeral of the two sites, Flixton Island 2, the use of both artefact analysis and geochemical analysis suggested that spatial patterning on site could be drawn out and mutually supported by the two avenues of evidence. At Star Carr, similar multi-elemental analysis on an occupation area that had archaeologically identified structural features strongly supported the case for the structure’s proposed limits as well as providing new information about potential activity in the general vicinity. The two sites yielded results that indicated that geochemical testing, particularly multi-elemental characterisation, and combining that information with artefactual and structural evidence was a useful approach for future researchers to consider using to identify activity areas at both ephemeral and more significant Mesolithic sites.
Supervisor: Milner, Nicola Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available