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    Tables – Ancient artifacts

    ArtifactOriginDiscovery DateCurrent LocationBrief Description
    Rosetta StoneEgypt1799British Museum, UKA granodiorite stele inscribed with a decree issued at Memphis in 196 BC on behalf of King Ptolemy V
    Terracotta ArmyChina1974Qin Shi Huang’s Mausoleum, ChinaAn enormous collection of full-size clay models of soldiers, horses, and chariots, which were buried with China’s first emperor, Qin Shi Huang
    Dead Sea ScrollsIsrael1946-1956Israel Antiquities Authority, IsraelA collection of Jewish texts that shed light on the life and times of Jesus Christ and early Christianity
    Tutankhamun’s Tomb (and its contents)Egypt1922Egyptian Museum, EgyptThe tomb of the young Pharaoh, untouched until its discovery and filled with beautiful, precious artifacts
    Elgin Marbles (Parthenon Marbles)Greece1801-1812British Museum, UKA collection of Classical Greek marble sculptures, inscriptions and architectural pieces that were part of the Parthenon and other buildings on the Acropolis of Athens
    Venus of WillendorfAustria1908Natural History Museum, AustriaA limestone figurine considered to be a symbol of fertility, dating to the Paleolithic period
    Antikythera MechanismGreece1901National Archaeological Museum, GreeceAn ancient Greek analogue computer used to predict astronomical positions and eclipses decades in advance
    Machu PicchuPeru1911Cusco Region, PeruA 15th-century Inca site located in the Eastern Cordillera of southern Peru, on a 2,430-meter mountain ridge
    Moai StatuesEaster Island, Chile1722Easter Island, ChileMonolithic human figures carved by the Rapa Nui people on the Chilean Polynesian island of Easter Island between the years 1250 and 1500
    Sutton Hoo HelmetEngland1939British Museum, UKAn ornate Anglo-Saxon helmet found during the excavation of the Sutton Hoo ship-burial.
    Time PeriodNameLocation FoundDescription
    ~2.6 million years agoOldowan ToolsGona, EthiopiaThese are among the first evidence of human tool usage. Primarily developed by early humans, the tools are typically made of chert or basalt and are chipped in a way to make a sharp edge.
    ~1.76–1.73 million years agoAcheulean HandaxesKokiselei, KenyaThe Acheulean handaxes signify the emergence of advanced toolmaking. They are typically teardrop-shaped and display an increased sophistication about toolmaking
    ~40,000 BCEVenus of Hohle FelsHohle Fels, GermanyMade from mammoth ivory, this is considered to be one of the oldest known depictions of a human figure. This highlights the advanced symbolic communication in humans of this era.
    ~35,000 BCELion Man of Hohlenstein StadelHohlenstein-Stadel, GermanyAn ivory figurine, it is the earliest known animal-human hybrid figure and stands as evidence of early human imagination and creativity.
    ~30,000–28,000 BCEChauvet Cave PaintingsVallon-Pont-d’Arc, FranceThe paintings show a variety of animals, human handprints, and abstract artistic designs, demonstrating early humans’ capability for complex artistic expression.
    ~25,000–20,000 BCEVenus of WillendorfWillendorf, AustriaAn oolitic limestone figurine, it’s one of the earliest works of art, indicating the human prehistoric fascination with the female form.
    ~8,000–7,000 BCEÇatalhöyük Wall PaintingsÇatalhöyük, TurkeyThese paintings show advanced town life, with a sophisticated understanding of settlement layout, which suggests an advanced society.
    ~4,000–3,000 BCEStonehengeWiltshire, EnglandThis monument shows the knowledge of basic geometry, astronomy, and the capability to organize large-scale construction.
    ~3,200 BCENarmer’s PaletteHierakonpolis, EgyptConsidered as one of the oldest historical documents. It has relief carvings displaying King Narmer’s (first ancient Egyptian pharaoh) unification of Upper and Lower Egypt.
    ~1,200 BCEShigir IdolUral Mountains, RussiaThe most ancient wooden sculpture in the world, adorned with encrypted information coded in ornamental forms, possibly indicating early human writing systems.