The artifact is 7.6 cm (3 inches) long, 4.1 cm (1.6 inches) wide, 0.9 cm (0.35 inches) thick, and has a mass of 28 grams.
“Our results document how the tool was made, used and why it was discarded,” Professor Conard said.
“Thanks to a series of four ESR-dates the find is securely dated to over 65,000 years ago.”
“Until now finds of leaf points were interpreted as belonging to the period between 45,000 and 55,000 years ago — the last cultural phase of Neanderthals in Central Europe,” he added.
“The new results demonstrate that our assumptions about the dating of the cultural groups of the late Neanderthals were wrong and need revision.”
Using detailed microscopic analyses, the researchers found that the leaf point was mounted on a wooden shaft.
“Damage to the tip indicates that the artifact was used as a hafted spear point, and that the spear was likely thrust into prey rather than being thrown,” they said.
“Neanderthals used plant-based glue and bindings made from plant fibers, sinew, or leather, to secure the leaf point to the spear.”
“They clearly used the spear for hunting. While they re-sharpened the tool it broke, leading to its discard.”
— Read on www.sci-news.com/archaeology/hohle-fels-leaf-point-09905.html