Bronze Age sickle from Chequers KnapA sickle is a tool used for mowing long vegetation such as grasses and cereals. Sickles consists of a curved blade with short handle. The blade is usually made of metal but some prehistoric examples are made of stone. Sickles were used in harvesting until the advent of more mechanised methods in 18th century, even then they continued to be used in certain areas until the early 20th century. The sickles known from Buckinghamshrie date to the prehistoric period, such as the Neolithic example at Marlow brickworks and the Late Bronze Age on fround in the Thames at Boveney Lock.


Sickle gloss is a distinctive shine produced on flint tools which have been used to reap cereal grasses. The polish comes from the abrasive action of silica present in the stems of both wild and cultivated cereals, and the occurrence of reaping tools with sickle gloss need not by itself imply agriculture.