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Pedro Cantalejo, the head of the Ardales Andalusian cave, looks at the Neanderthal cave paintings in the cave. Photo: (AFP)
This discovery is shocking because people think Neanderthals are primitive and savage, but drawing the caves more than 60,000 years ago was an amazing feat for them
Scientists discovered that when modern humans did not inhabit the European continent, Neanderthals were drawing stalagmites in Europe.
This discovery is shocking because Neanderthals are considered simple and savage, but drawing the caves more than 60,000 years ago was an incredible feat for them.
The cave paintings found in three caves in Spain were created between 43,000 and 65,000 years ago, 20,000 years before modern humans arrived in Europe. This confirms that art was invented by Neanderthals about 65,000 years ago.
However, according to Francesco d’Errico, the co-author of a new paper in PNAS magazine, this finding is controversial, “a scientific article says these pigments may be a natural substance” and is the result of iron oxide flow. .
A new analysis shows that the composition and position of the paint are inconsistent with natural processes. Instead, the paint is applied by spraying and blowing.
More importantly, their texture does not match the natural samples taken from the cave, which indicates that the pigment comes from an external source.
More detailed dating shows that these pigments were used at different points in time, more than 10,000 years apart.
According to d’Errico of the University of Bordeaux, this “supports the hypothesis that Neanderthals have come here many times over thousands of years to mark the caves with paint.”
It is difficult to compare the “art” of Neanderthals with frescoes made by prehistoric moderns. For example, the frescoes found in the Chauvie-Pondac caves in France are more than 30,000 years old.
But this new discovery adds more and more evidence that the Neanderthal lineage went extinct about 40,000 years ago, and that they were not the crude relatives of Homo sapiens that have long been portrayed as Homo sapiens.
The team wrote that these paints are not “art” in the narrow sense, “but are the result of graphic actions aimed at perpetuating the symbolic meaning of the space.”
The cave structure “played an important role in the symbol system of some Neanderthal communities”, although the meaning of these symbols is still a mystery.


Post time: Aug-27-2021

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