Earliest human drawing discovered in South African cave


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A number of years in the past, there was a jovial debate why Chris Messina, a former Google designer who proposed Twitter use the hashtag to kind subjects, didn’t patent the concept and make thousands and thousands off it – it seems he might need been about 73,000 years too late.

The earliest recognized drawing made by a human has been present in a South African cave and it seems to be similar to a hashtag, the grouping and search function made well-liked by the Jack Dorsey-led Twitter.

The drawing is mainly six pink strains crossed by three different barely curved strains. It seems on a tiny flake of mineral crust measuring solely about 1.5 inches (39 millimeters) lengthy and about half an inch (15 millimeters) tall. It is evidently half of a bigger drawing as a result of strains reaching the sting are reduce off abruptly there, researchers mentioned.


“Earlier than this discovery, Palaeolithic archaeologists have for a very long time been satisfied that unambiguous symbols first appeared when Homo sapiens entered Europe, about 40 000 years in the past, and later changed native Neanderthals,” mentioned College of Bergen professor Christopher Henshilwood in an announcement. 

Henshilwood continued: “Latest archaeological discoveries in Africa, Europe and Asia, through which members of our workforce have usually participated, assist a a lot earlier emergence for the manufacturing and use of symbols.”

The 73,000 year-old drawing was discovered within the Blombos Cave, roughly 190 miles east of Cape City, researchers mentioned. It’s roughly 30,000 years older than some other drawing presently recognized to humanity, the researchers mentioned.

The findings have been revealed within the scientific journal Nature.

Whereas it isn’t the earliest deliberate design (some summary engravings are considerably older), it does spotlight that early people have been in a position to produce designs on varied surfaces with completely different methods. It was created with a sharpened flake of ochre, a pigment broadly used within the historical world, Henshilwood informed the Related Press.


“This demonstrates that early Homo sapiens within the southern Cape used completely different methods to provide related indicators on completely different media,” Henshilwood added within the assertion. “This statement helps the speculation that these indicators have been symbolic in nature and represented an inherent facet of the behaviorally trendy world of those African Homo sapiens, the ancestors of all of us in the present day.”

Related patterns are engraved in different artifacts from the cave, and the hashtag design was produced broadly over the previous 100,000 years in rock artwork and work, Henshilwood mentioned. So the newly discovered sketch might be not only a assortment of random scratchings.

“It nearly definitely had some which means to the maker, and doubtless shaped part of the widespread symbolic system understood by different folks on this group,” he mentioned.


The Related Press contributed to this report. Comply with Chris Ciaccia on Twitter @Chris_Ciaccia

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