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Some of the more usual forms of these instruments will be found in Figs. 30 to 34, which may be considered to represent the most typical varieties. Some examples are simply rudely chipped into form, and left rough on the sides and edges, but others are beautifully and carefully rubbed down to a fine, smooth, and even polished surface.
The manner in which celts were used appears to have been by fixing into wooden or bone handles ;
but some were undoubtedly used by holding in the hand only. A celt of the form of Fig. 30 was found, still attached to its handle of wood, in the Solway Moss, near Longtown, at a depth of about six feet below the surface. Another and better example (the celt being of the same general form) was found in a small lake in Cumberland, and has been engraved by Mr. Evans. The end of the handle, of wood, is curved upwards. Another handled example, found at Tranmere, is preserved in the Liverpool museum.
The class of implements usually known by the name of “stone hammers” has been divided by Mr. Evans into the general classes of perforated axes (subdivided into double-edged axes, or those with a cutting or but slightly blunted edge at either end; adzes, or implements with the edge at right angles to the shaft-hole; axes with the edge at one end only, the shaft-hole being near the other end, which is rounded; and axe-hammers, sharp at one end and more or less hammer-like at the other, the shaft-hole being usually near the centre); perforated and grooved hammers; and hammer stones, or hammers not perforated for a shaft.
The first of these the perforated axes-vary much in form and in size, as will be seen reference to the engravings. Like as with the celts, popular belief has ascribed a supernatural origin to these larger and more ponderous instruments. In Scotland, according to Professor Wilson, the name by which they were popularly known till almost the close of last century, was that of “purgatory hammers.” Found, as the stone hammer frequently was, “within the cist, and beside the mouldering bones of its old pagan possessor, the simple discoverer could devise no likelier use for it than that it was laid there for its owner to bear with him up the trinal steps, and with it to thunder at the gates
of purgatory till the heavenly janitor appeared, that he might
The forms of the hammers in the first subdivision (that of examples with a cutting edge at each end)
Fig. 36. grooved; and others turned up in form of an adze. The engraving, Fig. 35, shows one of these latter as seen in side view, and Fig. 36 the same looking down
upon it so as to show the perforation for the shaft. The cutting edge, as usual in this class, is in a line with the shaft.
Implements of this kind, with the cutting edge at right angles with the shaft-hole, are of more rare occurrence in England, but they are nevertheless occasionally met with.
The typical form in the third subdivision (axeheads, namely, a cutting-edge at one end only, the shaft-hole being near the other, or rounder, or buttend) will be well understood by the engravings. Fig. 37, from Cambridgeshire, is of good shape, with the butt-end well rounded; the upper and under sides being flat, and the shaft-hole well defined. Fig. 40, instead of being grooved, as some examples are, has smooth sides, and a more hammer-like butt-end. The next engraving (Fig. 39) exhibits an example of much more slender and taper form ; it does not partake so much of the battle-axe shape as many of the others do. The fourth subdivision, that in which the butt
end is flat and hammer-like, embraces many good forms. These will be easily understood on reference to the woodcuts. Some are flat at both ends, others rounded, and may therefore be not in
appropriately called mauls. Of these, Fig. 43.
Figs. 41 to 43 will serve as examples. Others are circular, triangular, and cruciform; but these latter are of very rare occurrence.