Caves across Europe are filled with prehistoric paintings that depict many animals with remarkable fidelity. Scientists identified the species and understood how and with what technique the paintings were created. But they still lacked an answer to the question of why prehistoric people immortalized animals, and at the same time they could not explain the presence of strange points and other signs that appear in this prehistoric art.
So Londoner Bennett Bacon decided to try to decipher these signs. An article in the Cambridge Archaeological Journal, by which he was signed along with the stars of the field, shows that he succeeded in his intention and at the same time indicated the answer to the great ‘reason’.
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Bacon spent countless hours on the Internet and in the British Library poring over photographs of cave paintings. And so he compiled a gigantic database of most of Europe’s prehistoric cave art—and began looking for some regular relationships in it. What animals have what signs? And by what number? What links are still out there? Are there any recurring patterns to be found?
A sign resembling the letter “Y”, which appears in a number of paintings, became his key. Bacon came up with the idea that it could symbolize rebirth. Why? The brand shows two lines growing from one — symbolism simple enough that it would have made sense even to our ancestors. If this thesis is confirmed by further studies, then this will be the oldest symbolic – graphic depiction of a phenomenon – that is, the first letter in history.
Although Mr. Bacon is merely a “man in the street,” his diligence, diligence, and passion were such that they attracted the attention of respected archaeologists and anthropologists. They gradually joined his research, until his “team” consisted of the best experts from Durham University and University College London. And they helped him in the analysis. They discovered that the dots below the images of animals had a clear meaning: the number of signs corresponded to the month (according to the lunar calendar) when a particular animal species mated.
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