(Image: Moravian Museum, Anthropos Institute) Twenty-six thousand years ago in the Czech Republic, one of our ice-age ancestors selected a hunk of mammoth ivory and carved this enigmatic portrait of a woman - the oldest ever found. By looking at artefacts like this as works of art, rather than archaeological finds, a new exhibition at the British Museum in London hopes to help us see them and their creators with new eyes.
As early as the 6th millennium BC, three millennia before Dynastic Egypt, the Vinca culture was already a genuine civilisation. A typical town consisted of houses with complex architectural layouts and several rooms, built of wood that was covered in mud. The houses sat along streets, thus making Vinca the first urban settlement in Europe, but equally being older than the cities of Mesopotamia and Egypt.
Trypilian Earthenware: The Trypilians were a Stone Age people who lived in what is now Ukraine from 5400–2700 B.C. Apparently they created the largest settlements in the world (that we know of), only to burn them down and fade away. Makes you wonder if it was disease, war or just relocating and not wanting to share...