Artifact Gallery - Atlatl

Exhibit displaying a hand holding a wooden spear throwing device.

An atlatl (pronounced At-uhl at-uhl or At-lat-uhl), or spear thrower, was used for hunting before it was replaced by the bow and arrow during the Basketmaker III period (500 to 750 CE). The atlatl was a hand piece that extended the hunter's arm. The further back he held the atlatl and spear before throwing, the more force he produced, and the further the spear would fly. The flipping motion of the atlatl helped to both launch the spear and increase its distance.

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Last updated: May 12, 2020

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