Fragment Of World’s Oldest Stone Axe Reveals Cutting-edge Technology From Prehistoric Ancestors

May 11, 2016

By Alyssa Navarro, Tech Times

Original Article Published on

A fragment of the world’s oldest known stone axe has been unearthed by a group of archeologists in West Australia’s Kimberley region.

Believed to be about 10,000 years old, the polished basalt fragment reveals the cutting-edge technology used by the first Australians, indicating that the tools these prehistoric ancestors used were not as simple as believed.

Although the piece is about the size of a thumbnail, the basalt fragment offers the earliest evidence of an axe with a handle or a haft axe during the Stone Age, dating about 45,000 to 49,000 years ago.

The discovery could also answer the unending question of where axes originated.

“Now we have a discovery that appears to answer the question,” says Peter Hiscock of University of Sydney.


What The Discovery Says About Early Humans

Sue O’Connor, an archeologist from the Australian National University, says nowhere in the world could we get an axe as close to the Stone Age.

Such kinds of axes had appeared in Japan 35,000 years ago, she says, but in most parts of the world, the haft axe arrived with agriculture 10,000 years ago.