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Note that the dates from Fordhouse Barrow are TAQ dates provided by charcoal recovered immediately above the pitchstone-bearing pit; a leaf-shaped point from this pit defines the deposition as EN, and the pitchstone from the Fordhouse Barrow pit therefore clearly dates to the first half of the Early Neolithic. 2011a, The Levallois-like approach of Late Neolithic Britain: a discussion based on finds from the Stoneyhill Project, Aberdeenshire.

The pit underneath Fordhouse Barrow has not been dated by charcoal from the pit itself, but the leaf-shaped flint point associated with the pit’s pitchstone defines the small assemblage as definitely post-Mesolithic, and the three listed radiocarbon dates (Table 1) are from the barrow’s Phase 3B immediately above the pit, thus providing TAQ dates for the pit. 2009b, The lithic assemblage from Doon Hill, Dunbar, East Lothian. In: Flint and stone in the neolithic period (Saville, A., Ed.) Neolithic Studies Group seminar papers Vol.

However, leaf-shaped points – an Early Neolithic artefact type – are known off Arran, as are a small number of Middle Neolithic chisel-shaped arrowheads.

This, and other supporting evidence, led the present author to suggest that, in general, the pitchstone exchange network on the Scottish mainland probably dates largely to the Early Neolithic, with the exchange slowly decreasing around the Early to Middle Neolithic transition, at the time when we see a massive increase in the importation of Yorkshire flint into Scotland from the opposite direction, as well as the introduction in Scotland of the innovative Levallois-like knapping technique (Ballin 2011a; 2011b).

The archaeological pitchstone from pits is also dated indirectly through association with prehistoric pottery, and in addition this pitchstone provides supporting dates, through association in these same pits, for the importation into Scotland of axeheads of tuff (petrological Group VI) from Great Langdale in Cumbria (Bradley & Edmonds 1993). The distribution of archaeological pitchstone across northern Britain from the Isle of Arran in the Firth of Clyde, west of Glasgow. Pitchstone is expected – in due course of time – to be identified in assemblages further towards the south where it may have been misidentified as black chert, black flint, jet or glassy slag (Ballin 2008).