About this object

Flint drill microlith used in the manufacture of beads for jewellery. Long flake with notch at either side of base, to form point. The manufacturing of stone beads for jewellery was a major industry in ancient Egypt. The eastern desert was rich in supplies of blood-red carnelian that was very easy to break into circular shapes. Boring holes into the beads using rotating flint drills set into wooden handles was the hardest part of the job. Once polished the beads were ready for stringing into necklaces. In 1899 Sir Flinders Petrie gave Charles Flaxman Spurrell a selection of tiny stone tools (microliths) and stone and shell beads in various states of completion from Hierakonpolis, excavated by James Quibell and F. W. Green between 1897 and 1899.

Object specifics

  • Type
  • Culture
    Old Kingdom
  • Artist/Maker
  • Place made
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Hierakonpolis
  • Date made
    2686 BC - 2181 BC
  • Materials
  • Location
    World Museum, Level 3, Ancient Egypt Gallery
  • Acquisition
    Purchased from the collections of Norwich Castle Museum
  • Collector
    Egyptian Research Account
  • Place collected
    Africa: Northern Africa: Egypt: Hierakonpolis
  • Date collected
    1897 - 1899
  • Measurements
    20 mm x 7 mm x 3 mm
  • Note
    Excavated by James Quibell and F. W. Green between 1897 and 1899.
  • Related people
    Egyptian Research Account ( Collector, previous owner); Norwich Castle Museum and Art Gallery ( Previous owner); William Matthew Flinders Petrie ( Previous owner); Flaxman Charles John Spurrell ( Previous owner)


Previous owners

Object view = Humanities
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