Celt (tool)

In archaeology, a celt /ˈsɛlt/ is a long, thin, prehistoric, stone or bronze tool similar to an adze, a hoe or axe-like tool.

Olmec celts from Met
Three Olmec celts. The one in the foreground is incised with an image of an Olmec supernatural.
Celt tool Transyslvania
Celts from Transylvania.


The term "celt" came about from what was very probably a copyist's error in many medieval manuscript copies of Job 19:24 in the Latin Vulgate Bible, which became enshrined in the authoritative Sixto-Clementine printed edition of 1592; however the Codex Amiatinus, for example, does not contain the mistake.[1][2] While this is now considered to be the case by most scholars, some are still prepared to consider the existence of a real Latin word.

A "celt" was thus wrongly assumed to be a type of ancient chisel. Early eighteenth century antiquarians, such as Lorenz Beger, then adopted the word for the stone and bronze tools they were finding at prehistoric sites; the OED suggests that the imaginary etymological connection with the Celts may have assisted its passage into common use.

A shoe-last celt was a polished stone tool used during the early European Neolithic for felling trees and woodworking.

See also


  1. ^ Laistner, M. L. W. (1 January 1925). "Floscvli Philoxenei [Flosculi Philoxenei]". The Classical Quarterly. 19 (3/4): 192–195. doi:10.1017/S0009838800015846. JSTOR 636281.
  2. ^ ""Match 2" here". Archived from the original on 2011-07-17.

External links

Celt (disambiguation)

The Celts were Iron Age inhabitants of Europe, who spoke Celtic languages and shared other cultural features.

National cultures:

Gaelic culture

Culture of Ireland

Culture of Scotland

Culture of the Isle of Man

Culture of Wales

Culture of Cornwall

Culture of Brittany

Codex Amiatinus

The Codex Amiatinus is the earliest surviving complete manuscript of the Latin Vulgate version of the Christian Bible. It was produced around 700 C.E. in the north-east of England, at the Benedictine monastery of Monkwearmouth–Jarrow in the Anglo-Saxon Kingdom of Northumbria and taken to Italy as a gift for the Pope in 716. It was one of three giant single-volume Bibles then made at Monkwearmouth–Jarrow, and is the earliest complete one-volume Latin Bible to survive, only the León palimpsest being older; and the oldest bible where all the biblical books present what would be their Vulgate texts.

It is named after the location in which it was found in modern times, Mount Amiata in Tuscany, at the Abbazia di San Salvatore and is now kept at Florence in the Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana (Amiatino 1).

Designated by siglum A, it is commonly considered to provide the most reliable surviving representation of Jerome's Vulgate text for the books of the New Testament, and most of the Old Testament. As was standard in all Vulgate bibles until the 9th century, the Book of Baruch is absent as is the Letter of Jeremiah, the text of the Book of Lamentations following on from the end of Jeremiah without a break. Ezra is presented as a single book, the texts of the later canonical books of Ezra and Nehemiah being continuous. Similarly the books of Samuel, Kings and Chronicles are each presented as a single book.In 2018 the Codex Amiatinus was loaned to the British Library for an exhibition of Anglo-Saxon manuscripts, returning to England for the first time in 1,300 years.


Harappa (Punjabi pronunciation: [ɦəɽəppaː]; Urdu/Punjabi: ہڑپّہ) is an archaeological site in Punjab, Pakistan, about 24 km (15 mi) west of Sahiwal. The site takes its name from a modern village located near the former course of the Ravi River which now runs 8 km (5.0 mi) in north. The current village of Harappa is less than 1 km (0.62 mi) from the ancient site. Although modern Harappa has a legacy railway station from the period of the British Raj, it is a small crossroads town of 15,000 people today.

The site of the ancient city contains the ruins of a Bronze Age fortified city, which was part of the Indus Valley Civilization centered in Sindh and the Punjab, and then the Cemetery H culture. The city is believed to have had as many as 23,500 residents and occupied about 150 hectares (370 acres) with clay brick houses at its greatest extent during the Mature Harappan phase (2600 BC – 1900 BC), which is considered large for its time. Per archaeological convention of naming a previously unknown civilization by its first excavated site, the Indus Valley Civilization is also called the Harappan Civilization.

The ancient city of Harappa was heavily damaged under British rule, when bricks from the ruins were used as track ballast in the construction of the Lahore–Multan Railway. In 2005, a controversial amusement park scheme at the site was abandoned when builders unearthed many archaeological artifacts during the early stages of building work. A plea from the Pakistani archaeologist Mohit Prem Kumar to the Ministry of Culture resulted in a restoration of the site.

Lough Scur

Lough Scur (Irish: Loch an Scoir, meaning "the lake of the horses, pasturage, troop") is a freshwater lake in south County Leitrim, northwest Ireland. It is part of the Shannon–Erne Waterway. There has been Human settlements here since the New Stone Age. Modern features include quays and moorings. Protected features are Castle John, three Crannogs, and the causeway into Rusheen Island, though "Jail Island" is not protected. The ecology of Lough Scur, and indeed all county Leitrim lakes, is threatened by pollution and invasive species such as curly waterweed, zebra mussel, and freshwater clam.

Outline of prehistoric technology

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to prehistoric technology.

Prehistoric technology – technology that predates recorded history. History is the study of the past using written records; it is also the record itself. Anything prior to the first written accounts of history is prehistoric (meaning "before history"), including earlier technologies. About 2.5 million years before writing was developed, technology began with the earliest hominids who used stone tools, which they may have used to start fires, hunt, cut food, and bury their dead.


A palstave is a type of early bronze axe. It was common in the middle Bronze Age in northern, western and south-western Europe. In the technical sense, although precise definitions differ, an axe is generally deemed to be a palstave if it is hafted by means of a forked wooden handle kept in place with high, cast flanges and stop bar. The axe should be much thicker on the blade side of the stop bar than the hafting side (Schmidt and Burgess 1981, 115). In these respects, it is very close, but distinct from, earlier 'flanged axes'. Palstaves were cast in bivalve moulds made of clay, stone or bronze.

The archaeologist John Evans (1881, 72) popularized the term 'palstave' in English following Danish archaeologists who borrowed the term from Icelandic: paalstab. Confusingly, a paalstab is not an axe, but a digging tool. However, the term had become so common with Scandinavian and German archaeologists that Evans thought it best to follow suit.


Sembiyankandiyur is an archaeological site in Nagapattinam district in Tamil Nadu, India.

Shoe-last celt

A shoe-last celt (German: Schuhleistenkeil) is a long thin polished stone tool for felling trees and woodworking, characteristic of the early Neolithic Linearbandkeramik and Hinkelstein cultures, also called Danubian I in the older literature.

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