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8 Miles Of Prehistoric Art Discovered In 'Sistine Chapel Of The Ancients'

The largest collection of prehistoric art was discovered in the Amazon. Researchers have dubbed it "the Sistine Chapel of the ancients" because it is such a significant find.

The paintings are from 12,000 years ago and will give us unique insight into that time. In particular, the artwork depicts many ice-age animals that are now extinct. These ancient depictions can shed new light on how these animals lived.

The images gave clues to the age of the paintings.

It is estimated that the images are about 12,000 years old because of the animals that were drawn. There are depictions of mastodons, palaeolama (extinct camel-like animals), giant sloths, and early horses.

Many of these animals have not been in the Amazon for 12,000 years. The paintings transport us back to a lost world.

The discovery is breathtaking.

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José Iriarte, the lead researcher, told The Guardian:

"When you’re there, your emotions flow … We’re talking about several tens of thousands of paintings. It’s going to take generations to record them … Every turn you do, it’s a new wall of paintings. We started seeing animals that are now extinct. The pictures are so natural and so well made that we have few doubts that you’re looking at a horse, for example."

The discovery was found on a rock face in a remote area.

From the nearest center, the crew had to drive two hours and trek on foot for four hours! This was a perilous journey through dangerous areas. The region is home to caimans and the deadliest snake in the Americas.

Luckily no one was bitten. If they were, they would not have reached a hospital in time.

Some of the images are very high up.

Some images were so high on the rock face they could only be viewed with a drone. The ancient artist might have created a structure to allow them to paint so high.

The images include depictions of wooden towers, which would allow them to reach the higher images.

The paintings were found a year ago.

It was not announced until now because the discovery was being filmed for a documentary. The film is called Jungle Mystery: Lost Kingdom of the Amazon. You can view the documentary on Channel 4 on December 5, 2020.

h/t: The Guardian