The oldest ornament in the world has been found at the entrance of the Unicorn Cave, located at the foot of the Harz Mountains in Germany. Archaeologists said that the item, in which a fine workmanship was used, showed the aesthetic understanding of the Neanderthals.
Scientists announced that they discovered the world’s oldest ornament at the entrance of the Unicorn Cave, located at the foot of the Harz Mountains in Germany. It is stated that the ornament, which consisted of a deer nose 51,000 years ago, was skillfully engraved with regularly spaced and neatly stacked strips.
However, archaeologists said that the object in question had a flat base for its upright placement. It was stated that the old ornament, which is thought to have been used for decoration purposes, may depict gnarled wild animals.
The chevrons on the bone, which had to be boiled before carving to make it softer, suggest that the ornament had a “symbolic meaning” and was a preconceived artistic work.
The leader of the study, Dr. Dirk Leder said: “A carved bone is an outstanding example of Neanderthal cognitive capacities. What makes the item so interesting is that the pattern is very clear and the engravings are very deep. It would take about 90 minutes to carve the chevrons,” he said.
On the other hand, it was seen that 6 lines were carved on the bones. This suggests that he should combine them consistently. Dr. Leder said the notches carved into the bone are one centimeter to 2.5 centimeters long and set at a 90-degree angle, meaning there are “no ‘butcher-style cuts’:
“This shows that Neanderthals were capable of sophisticated and complex behaviors, including producing artistic works. Engraving individual lines on a strip is indicative of conceptual imagination.” On the other hand, it was stated that the oldest known ornament in the world was 6.35 centimeters in size, 4 centimeters wide and weighed 30 grams.
Dr. “Giant deer were rare in the north of the Alps back then. This reinforces the idea that the engraving had a symbolic meaning. Our findings also contribute to understanding the complex behavior of extinct species,” Leder said.
The carved bone was found near “Unicorn Cave”, where treasure hunters have been looking for evidence of unicorns since the 15th century.