The role of flint in historical times
The use of metal implements, especially the spreading of the
less valuable iron tools gradually replaced flint as the raw
material of tools. The mechanical properties of flint, i.e.,
it gives a good spark when hit with steel or another
quartzose stone became more important than its traditional
functions. As part of the shepherds' kit, flint was used
from Early Medieval times till our century. Its industrial
scale exploitation started in the 16th century, based on its
spark-producing quality as part of fire arms ('gunflint').
Modern industry use silices especially in grinding mills and
the production of jewellery.
Illustrations to this chapter: