ABSTRACT

The question at this point is not whether there were differences in skill and quality, but what to make of these differences in light of the organisation of metalworking in the Bronze Age. In chapters 7, 8, and 9 I have discussed manifold axes from a craft perspective demonstrating considerable disparity in skills of the makers of these axes. Though a valid conclusion to draw this is hardly a surprising one, or helpful. We are dealing with handmade craft objects and one of the defining characteristics of craft is that it cannot play a theme without variation. This level of detail does not let us draw inferences of specialisation and organisation of prehistoric metalworking. The individual is an interesting but impractical analytical unit from which to view and model prehistoric societies.