Digging sticks and agriculture development at the ancient Neolithic site of la Draga (Banyoles, Spain)

Oriol López-Bultó*, Raquel Piqué, Ferran Antolín, Joan Antón Barceló, Antoni Palomo, Ignacio Clemente

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


Wooden digging sticks are one of the earliest kinds of tool in human evolution, and provably one of the most widely used in prehistory. This paper will focus on its role in the early agriculture development focusing on the case of the digging sticks assemblage of the Early Neolithic waterlogged site of la Draga (Spain). Ethnographically different uses can be attributed to this type of tool, being soil tilling for agricultural proposes the most economically and socially significant. Based on that hypothesis it has been developed an experimental analysis, followed by the use-wear analysis of 3D models, which suggests the use of the digging sticks of la Draga as agricultural tools. This experimental and use-wears new results are combined with the carpological record at la Draga in order to characterise the early agricultural development at the site.

Original languageAmerican English
Article number102193
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Archaeological Science: Reports
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2020


  • 3D
  • Agriculture
  • Digging sticks
  • Neolithic
  • Use-wear analysis
  • Wooden tools


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