1 1 73-84 2014

Knappable lithic resources of North-Western Romania: A mineralogical study

Otis Norman Crandell


The purpose of this study is to identify and characterise some of the raw materials in NW Romania which have been suggested as having been used for knapping tools. The materials cropping out in this area include jasper, chalcedony, and perlite. The basic characteristics of the materials, obtained by macroscopic, microscopic, and X-ray powder diffraction (XRPD) investigations provide a reference database useful in provenance studies on individual artefacts or whole assemblages. An assessment of each material is made regarding its quality as a knappable material.


knappable material, lithic tools, jasper; perlite; chalcedony, lithotheque, Eastern Carpathians, NW Romania

Full Text:



Benkő, F. 1786, Magyar minerologia, az az a’ kövek’ ’s értzek’ tudománya. Nyomt. a' Réform. Kollégyom' Betüivel, Kolozsvár (Cluj-Napoca), 181 p. (in Hungarian) ("Hungarian mineralogy")

Borcoș, M. & Vlad, Ș. 1994, Plate tectonics and metallogeny in the East Carpathians and Apuseni Mts. Field trip guide, 1994. Geological Institute of Romania, Bucharest, 43 p.

Crandell, O.N. 2005, Macroscopic analysis and characterisation of chert for provenance purposes. Sargetia, Acta Musei Devensis, 33: 137-153.

Crandell, O.N. 2006, Macroscopic and microscopic analysis of chert; A proposal for standardisation of methodology and terminology. Buletinul Cercurilor Științifice Studențești, 12: 7-30.

Crandell, O.N. 2009, Romanian Lithotheque Project: Knappable stone resources in the Mureș Valley, Romania. Studia Geologia, Special Issue, MAEGS - 16: 79-80. URL: http://www.studia.ubbcluj.ro/arhiva/abstract_en.php?editie=GEOLOGIA&nr=Special%20Issue&an=2009&id_art=7388

Edelstein, O., Iștvan, D., Cojocea, C., Weisz, G., Bernad, A., Stan, D. & Kovacs, M. 1980, Geological map of Oaș-Țibleș Mts.; 1:25000 scale. S.C. IPEG Maramureș S.A., Baia Mare. (in Romanian)

Ghiurcă, V. & Chira, D. 1998, Resursele gemologice ale județului Maramureș. Studii și cercetări (Științele Naturii), 4: 5-13. (in Romanian) ("Gemological resources of Maramureș county")

Givulescu, R. 1967, Cîteva precizări în legătură cu vîrsta depozitelor sedimentare din dealul Piciorul Porcului, comuna Ilba - reg. Maramureș. Comunicări de Geologie-Geografie, 4: 91-97. (in Romanian) ("Some details about age of the sedimentary deposits of Piciorul Porcului Hill, Ilba village - Maramureș region")

Ilinca, G. 1989, The chalcedony of Trestia–Maramureș. Dări de Seamă ale Ședințelor, 74(1): 21–34.

Ilinca, G., Ionescu, C. & Ghergari, L. 2009, The “chalcedony” of Trestia, Maramureș (Romania) – Revisited. Studia Geologia UBB, Special Issue: 190-191. URL: http://www.studia.ubbcluj.ro/arhiva/abstract_en.php?editie=GEOLOGIA&nr=Special%20Issue&an=2009&id_art=7467

Ionescu, C. & Ghergari, L. 1999, Gems in the Quaternary deposits from Romania: blue quartz from Trestia-Maramures. In: INQUA XV International Congress abstracts; Durban, South Africa; August 3-11, 1999 (Partridge, T.C., Ed.), Durban: p. 87.

Ionescu, C. & Ghergari, L. 2000, Gems in the Quaternary deposits from Romania: blue quartz from Trestia-Maramures. Quaternary International, 63-64: 63. doi:10.1016/s1040-6182(99)00031-2

Iorgulescu, T. 1955, Microfauna unor profile din sedimentarul zonei eruptive a regiunii Baia Mare. Dări de Seamă ale Ședințelor Comitetul Geologic, 39: 69-83. (in Romanian) ("Microfauna of sedimentary profiles of the eruptive zone of the Baia Mare region")

Manilici, V. 1962, Contribuțiuni la studiul rocilor efuzive din zona Baia Sprie – Dănești – Trestia – Bloaja (regiunea Baia Mare). Dări de Seamă ale Comitetului Geologic al României, 46: 75–88. (in Romanian) ("Contributions to the study of effusive rocks from the Baia Sprie – Dănești – Trestia – Bloaja zone (Baia Mare region)")

Moțiu, A. & Ghiurcă, V. 1979, Date noi privind calcedonia de Trestia. Studia Universitatis Babeș-Bolyai. Series geologia-geographia, 24(2): 24–31. (in Romanian) ("New data regarding the chalcedony of Trestia")

Pop, D., Constantina, C., Tătar, D. & Kiefer, W. 2004, Raman spectroscopy on gem-quality microcrystalline and amorphous silica varieties from Romania. Studia UBB, Geologia, 49(1): 41-52. URL: http://scholarcommons.usf.edu/geologia/vol49/iss1/art4

Rădulescu, D. 1960, Studiul petrografic al formațiunilor eruptive Seini-Ilba-Nistru (Baia Mare). Anuarul Comitetului Geologic, 31: 151-294. (in Romanian) ("Petrographic study of the Seini-Ilba-Nistru (Baia Mare) eruptive formations")

Sagatovici, A., Arion, F. & Popescu, I.C. 1960, Contribuțiuni la cunoașterea pertlitelor din Tara Oașului. Comunicări de Geologie-Geografie, 1: 45-50. (in Romanian) ("Contributions to the knowledge of the perlite rocks in Țara Oașului")

Săndulescu, M., Kräutner, H., Borcoș, M., Năstăseanu, S., Patrulius, D., Ștefănescu, M., Ghenea, C., Lupu, M., Savu, H., Bercia, I. & Marinescu, F. 1978, Geological map of Romania, 1:1,000,000 scale. Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Bucharest. (in Romanian)

SRTM 2000, Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) Digital Elevation Models (DEMs). NGA (National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency) and NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration). Retrieved 15 March 2010. URL: http://dds.cr.usgs.gov/srtm/version2_1/

Stan, N. & Bîrlea, V. 1967, Puncte de vedere asupra vulcanismului neogen de la Racșa-Vama-Certeze. Dări de Seamă ale Ședințelor, Comitetul de Stat al Geologiei (1965-1966), 53(1): 215-234. (in Romanian) ("Views on the Neogene volcanism of Racșa-Vama-Certeze")

Tudor, G. 2009, GIR bedrock and superficial lithostratigraphy. Geological Survey of Romania. Retrieved 15 March 2013. URL:

Turq, A. 2005, Réflexions méthodologiques sur les études de matières premières lithiques. 1 – des lithothèques au matériel archéologique. Paléo. Revue d'archéologie préhistorique, (17): 111-132. (in French) ("Methodological considerations about lithic studies. 1 - from lithotheques to archaeological samples") URL: http://paleo.revues.org/883

Zepharovich, V. 1859, Mineralogisches Lexicon für das Kaiserthum Österreich. Vol. 1. Wilhelm Braumüller, Vienna, 630 p. (in German) ("Mineralogical lexicon of the Austrian Empire")

Zerrenner, C. 1871, Der Chalcedon von Trestyan. Neues Jahrbuch für Mineralogie, Geologie und Paläontologie: 81–82. (in German) ("The chalcedony of Trestia")

Zerrenner, C. 1874, Chalcedon von Trestyan. Mineralogische Mittheilungen: 94. (in German) ("Chalcedony of Trestia")

DOI: https://doi.org/10.2218/jls.v1i1.824


ISSN 2055-0472 (Online) 
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 2.5 UK: Scotland License.
Privacy and cookies Take Down Policy