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38,000-Year-Old Stone Art Masterpiece Unearthed By Anthropologists, Gives Insight Into The History Of Europe

First Posted: Jan 30, 2017 05:01 AM EST
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An international team of anthropologists, led by anthropologist Randall White at New York University, discovered an engraved stone art piece from a southwestern French rock shelter site, present in the Vézère Valley. The art piece is about 38,000-year-old and the pattern engraved on it is unique and interesting.

The recovered stone art piece is believed to be one of the earliest pieces that has ever been discovered in the Western Eurasia region.

"The discovery sheds new light on regional patterning of art and ornamentation across Europe at a time when the first modern humans to enter Europe dispersed westward and northward across the continent," White said.

The detailed description of the discovery, which was elucidated in the article published in the Quaternary International journal, provides insights into Aurignacian culture. It is believed to have existed in early modern humans, who lived around 43,000 to 33,000 years ago, EurekAlert reported.

The research site from where the said discovery is made was originally explored in the 20th century. White and his team started exploring it in 2011 and discovered the engraved stone in 2012. The stone depicts the images of aurochs, or wild cow, which is further surrounded with a number of rows of engraved dots.

The present discovery is preceded with a number of other archaeological finds in the region, which include pierced teeth, ivory and soapstone beads, shells, stone engravings and limestone slabs that were once hand painted. These objects provide a lot of information regarding the way of living of modern men when they first migrated to Europe, New York City Patch reported.

White further explained this by saying, "Following their arrival from Africa, groups of modern humans settled into western and Central Europe, showing a broad commonality in graphic expression against which more regionalized characteristics stand out."

He also indicated that the various items discovered in the region "fits well with social geography models that see art and personal ornamentation as markers of social identity at regional, group, and individual levels."

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