Most of the terminology used in this webpage are
consistent with the standard terminology used to describe projectile points and other
lithics. Standardization of the terminology allows for more consistent
descriptions and understanding of everyone. This page uses the
standardized terminology, with the exception of the shoulder edge.
This terminology has been adopted in order to give greater descriptions of
the blade at the area of the blade where it is hafted onto the shaft.
Not all descriptions will include the description of the shoulder edge, but
in cases where the shape of the blade does not give adequate description,
the shoulders edge description will be used. For the remaining
descriptions, only the blade will be described (note: on the older pages all
points have a description of the shoulder edge, the new pages lack the table
and have a written description).. Here is how the terminology is
Shapes: Projectile Points have been broken
down into four separate categories; Stemmed, Notched, Lanceolate, and Other.
Auriculate: Auricle or ears are pointed at an downward angel
Side Notch: Notches enter the body of the point from the blade
creating parallel notches.
Lanceolate: The blade expands out from the tip and
then narrows back in towards the base. This type of
point generally has a straight or concave base.
Stemmed: Stemmed points
are further broken down into; Contracting Stem, Straight Stem, and Expanding
Corner Notch: Notches enter the body of the point from the
corner, or where the blade meets the base. This type of
notch generally create a barb.
Stemmed: The stem is relatively straight from the shoulders to
Expanding Stem: The stem expands from the shoulders to the
base. The difference from a side notch may be stylistic, so if
you are unable to find your point, check side notched points.
Contracting Stem: The stem tappers from the shoulders to the base.
The taper may range from a slight taper to a sharp taper.
Basal Notch: Notches enter the body from the base of the
point. This type of notch has long barbs.
Notched points are further broken down into: Side Notch, Corner Notch,
and Basal Notch
Triangle: The blade expands out from the base to the base.
: Lanceolate points are
further broken down into: Articulated, Lanceolate, Leaf, and Triangle
Leaf: also called ovate or egg shaped. This point
expands out from the tip and narrows back in at the base and has a
Bifurcated: Bifurcated points have a deep center notch in the
base. The overall shape may range from stemmed to notched
points. All bifurcated points have also been included in the
search pages under the overall shape of the point.
Other Shaped Lithics: : This section includes many tools
(drills, knives, scrappers, fleshers, etc.) that are not classified
as projectile points, but are made of the same material.
Other: Other points include
Bifurcated projectile points and other shaped Lithics
of the Base
of the Stem
Terminology used for Describing the Anatomy of a
Description of the Cross Section
of the Shoulder
Description of the Shoulders Edge
Description of the Blade
Terminology used to Descriptions the Flaking of Projectile Points