Carl Andrews

Three stages of carving. This collection of pieces illustrates the latter two stages of the bone-carving process. The process began with the craftsman cutting a bone into workable segments (not shown). Next, a number of blanks were cut from the segments, in this case long bone shaft slices like the one in the lower left corner. Finally the craftsman, usually using a lathe, cut flat disks out of the blanks, leaving behind cut-off arcs like those seen at left. The disks could then be incised with designs for use as gaming pieces or drilled with holes to make buttons or whorls. The disk with a broken edge, at bottom right, is probably a reject. Some plano-convex buttons, or whorls, decorated with incised designs appear on the right.