On the tradition of "damaging" iron axes in Lithuania (1st-16th century)

Mokslo publikacijos / Scientific publications
Document Type:
Straipsnis / Article
Anglų kalba / English
On the tradition of "damaging" iron axes in Lithuania (1st-16th century)
In the Journal:
Sabiedrība un kultūra. 2018, 20, p. 62-71
Narrow-bladed; Wide-bladed axes; "Damaging"; Butt; Head; Blade.
Summary / Abstract:

ENThe article sets out to review certain manifestations of „damaging” iron axes on the territory of Lithuania from the first centuries AD to the Middle Ages, i.e. from the occurrence of these artefacts over a wide area to the end of the tradition of placing grave goods in the grave. Fifty-seven cases of „damaging” were found in the group of narrow-bladed axes, with most damage occurring in the area of the axe’s butt, head and blade. Twenty-four artefacts featuring such damage were found in the group of wide-bladed axes of the 10th–12th/13th century, including three M type axes which are broken and bent. Eleven damaged axes were found in the group of the 14th–16th century wide-bladed axes. The review revealed that the phenomenon is ambiguous and rather complex. The axe’s butt and the part of the head with the blade broken off in a particularly exact manner imply the defects that are definitely a result of ritual actions. There is some uncertainty about the damage which occurs on the blade. However, it is a bit too early to attribute the defects to rituals alone. While more in-depth studies on the surface, detachment points and edges are lacking, there is still an opportunity that at least some of the defects are functional by nature (e.g. resulting from a fight). The review pinpointed the general tendencies of „damaging” iron axes on the Lithuanian territory. To learn more about the phenomenon in question, further studies focusing on specific periods, archaeological cultures and regions are required. [From the publication]

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2019-12-10 20:31:06
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