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Thread: Crescent Knives

  1. #1
    Arrowheadologist
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    Crescent Knives

    I have a question and I need you guys to help me out here if you can. Is there a difference between a crescent knife and a blade that has a crescent shape? If there is a difference could you explain what it is?

    Thanks,
    Pat
    "The true secret to contentment is knowing that life is a gift."

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  3. #2
    Desert Rat
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    ................
    Last edited by arrow719; 05-21-2011 at 06:29 PM.

  4. #3
    Arrowheadologist
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    Where can I find a photo to compare?
    "The true secret to contentment is knowing that life is a gift."

  5. #4
    Desert Rat
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    ................
    Last edited by arrow719; 05-21-2011 at 06:29 PM.

  6. #5
    retired professor
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    Crescents and non-related forms

    Crescents are found in old lake beds and high terraces of the Great
    Basin, dating generally to the Paleoindian period. I don't know of any
    radiocarbon dates that can be linked to the crescents, but in terms of
    association with Paleoindian point styles, that is certain.

    These artifacts have been written about for years, and many guesses as
    to their use have been put forth. Not to be left out, back in the early
    1970s, I studied a number of the specimens from the Black Rock Desert
    of Nevada for microwear. No evidence of use as knives, or scrapers...
    but an unusual pattern of dulling on the opposite central edges and
    impact fractures on the corners of the crescents. The late Jimmy Mitchell
    did a statistical anlaysis of the data and found that they correlated.

    My old professor at Berkeley, Bob Heizer, suggested that these specimens
    were hafted in a transverse fashion at the end of dart shafts. We published these in a couple of papers and one monograph on Great Basin point typology
    in the late 1970s (Great Basin Projectile Points: Forms and Chronology,Ballena Press 1978). Bob liked the name "Great Basin Transverse." He always pointed to the widespread use of transverse-hafted dart/arrow points around the world -- from Egypt to south America. The recurring theme in terms of the use of these specimens from other regions was that they were used in bird-hunting and waterfowling. Since Bob and his earlier (1960s) grad students had documented 1000s of crescents from the lake beds of the Black Rock Desert, it was his hypothesis that they were used in duck hunting.

    We'll never be able to prove that function, and an even longer way from
    proving any other. I still hold a fondness for them being transverse
    hafted spear points, based on the data we published in 1977 (Contributions, UC Archaeological Research Facility, No. 35, pp.23-48.)

    The Mexican "crescents" are all end scrapers at various stages of use, from
    SW Coahuila. A number are shown in a paper I published in The Kiva (Tucson, 1971). There are also side-notched versions of these. They are
    widely sold on the internet as being from "Starr and Zavala Counties" TX.
    But they don't occur there, and thousands have been smuggled into the
    US in recent years...along with everything else from that region. I was
    glad to hear recently that the US Attorney for the Western District of
    Texas and the ICE continue to make major seizures and initiate prosecutions
    of the artifact smugglers.

  7. #6
    selturner
    Guest
    This is the closest I have to a crescent shape blade.Its 4 1/8 long
    Attached Images Attached Images  

  8. #7
    Tribal Council Member
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    There is a Texas type that is unifacial , curved-straight edged, and on the thick side. I bought several of them years ago, hoping they were paleos. Tony Baker said they were from the Archaic era, so I gave them away (thus no pictures).

  9. #8
    Arrowheadologist
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    So then is this a crescent knife or just a crescent shape knife?
    Attached Images Attached Images  
    "The true secret to contentment is knowing that life is a gift."

  10. #9
    Tribal Council Member
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    Knife. No doubt.

  11. #10
    selturner
    Guest
    That looks like a un-knotched Ensor or marcos tang knife.(cornertang)

 

 

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