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The Daily Grind: Trends in Grinding Stone Use in Eastern Tigrai from 1600 BCE to Modern Times

Author(s): Laurie Nixon-Darcus

Year: 2017

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A morphological investigation of grinding stones recovered from the Northern Ethiopian site of Mezber revealed changes through time that likely were made to increase efficiencies. The need for efficiency may have been due to increasing needs (e.g. larger populations, an increasing reliance on grains in the diet, a desire to reduce grinding times). Through the phases at Mezber the archaeological evidence suggests a change in the quantity of grinding stones. The growing numbers of recovered grinding stones during the Middle Phase may also reflect increasing needs for the types of reasons suggested above. As the numbers decline in the Late Phase, there may have been a reduction in need for grinding, perhaps due to out migration from this rural area into more populated town areas. The grinding stones found at Mezber also reflect multi-functional tools used to grind both domestic grains and imported grains, as evidenced by different surface textures and starch grain analysis.

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The Daily Grind: Trends in Grinding Stone Use in Eastern Tigrai from 1600 BCE to Modern Times. Laurie Nixon-Darcus. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 430989)


Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -178.41; min lat: 62.104 ; max long: 178.77; max lat: 83.52 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 16604

Arizona State University The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation National Science Foundation National Endowment for the Humanities Society for American Archaeology Archaeological Institute of America