Paleolithic people made handaxes to show off their sexiness, argue some paleontologists

Kitchen Knife Forums

Help Support Kitchen Knife Forums:

May 26, 2021
Reaction score

According to science, dudes have been sharpening stuff for a long, long time, initially hoping to impress the ladies who, presumably, have been reacting with "huh?" for almost nearly as long.

Fortunately for paleontologists, this did not deter said dudes, who switched to just showing off their toys to one another for mutual appreciation.

"Why was time invested in making [handaxes] when less extensively retouched artefacts, or even plain unretouched flakes, are suitable for tasks such as butchery, woodworking and the other activities for which handaxes were used?" asked Dr. Marek Kohn and Dr. Steven Mithen in their paper "Handaxes: Products of Sexual Selection?" published in Antiquity 73, 1999.

Their answer: "Teardrop-shaped handaxes were products of sexual selection and as such were integral to the processes of mate choice within socially complex and competitive groups."

Kohn and Mithen's argument is commonly referred to as the "sexy handaxe theory," and paleontologists have been debating it for over 20 years.


professional blame taker
KKF Supporting Member
Feb 9, 2018
Reaction score
LOL, Interesting, yet I somehow doubt that version...Darwin does not agree, that trait should have gone extinct long ago if these axes served no other purpose than NOT impressing females.

Or, the role of those axes was totally not it does not matter if I do sharpen my GF Global knife or not, I don't even think she ever used the Markin petty I gave her.