Oldest known cave painting of animal found in Borneo, Indonesia, bolstering new theory on human ancestors

WASHINGTON — Scientists have found the oldest known example of an animal drawing: a red silhouette of a bull-like beast on the wall of an Indonesian cave.

The sketch is at least 40,000 years old, slightly older than similar animal paintings found in famous caves in France and Spain. Until a few years ago, experts believed Europe was where our ancestors started drawing animals and other figures.

But the age of the drawing reported Wednesday in the journal Nature, along with previous discoveries in Southeast Asia, suggest that figurative drawing appeared in both continents about the same time.

The new findings fuel discussions about whether historical or evolutionary events prompted this near-simultaneous “burst of human creativity,” said…

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