Bone retouchers from De Nadale cave

In a recently published article, Eva Martellotta and colleagues describe the bone retouchers found in the Quina Mousterian layer of De nadale cave (northern Italy).

Bone retouchers from de Nadale cave


Bone retouchers are present in the human toolkit throughout the Lower and Middle Palaeolithic and appear in many contexts across Europe, sometimes in association with heavily retouched stone tools. Here we present the complete assemblage of bone retouchers recovered in the Mousterian Quina site of De Nadale Cave in the north of Italy dated to the onset of MIS 4. The results show that this assemblage is consistent – both in morphological and technological features - with bone retouchers recovered in the rest of Europe. The predominance of cervid and bovid limb bones is observed, and the study of the retouch-induced stigmata reveals intense modification of the lithic industry carried out on-site. This analysis contributes to our understanding of Neanderthal cultural and economic choices in the Quina complex in Europe.