A range for microliths from excavations at Weston, Pre-history North of Biggar project
Mesolithic sites are being discovered almost on an annual basis by BAG, principally through arable fieldwalking, but reservoir and forestry work has also produced several sites.
Large lithic assemblages have been gathered and several sites which have been excavated have provided valuable radio carbon dates encompassing the periods of 6000 – 10,000 years ago.
The evidence points to a need to understand this period in a new way, inland and upland sites are being regularly found, often not complying with the old understanding of coastal or river side sites, similarly, supposedly Late Mesolithic assemblages of lithic including microliths are increasing being found with relatively early radio carbon dates.
Scraper and microlith from Daer Forest excavations
It is almost certain that rivers and their tributaries did play the fundamental role of routes through the landscape of southern Scotland; many sites appear to testify to that assumption. Camp sites however may be another matter, factors which are now absent from the landscape probably dictated where the hunter gatherers may have decided to set up their temporary homes. We can only imagine that perhaps special areas of woodlands, maybe even adapted by them for hunting and food gathering were a reason for camping away from the river side.
At any rate the work by BAG offers a new perspective on the Mesolithic in central southern Scotland; site location, artefact assemblage typology and radio carbon dates will be given in a report on our Mesolithic work soon on this web.
The recently discovered Mesolithic Sites of South Lanarkshire in South Central Scotland, and their context in Southern Scotland.
Read the full report in this research project pdf report – Mesolithic of South Lanarkshire.