(If you’re keeping score, that’s competing with Europe’s oldest.) The red ochre paintings were dated by examining the calcite deposits that had formed on top of the drawings, on the theory that the paintings had to be at least as old as the material that covered them.
Paintings include human figures, wild animals, and many hand stencils, one of which, when tested, was found to be 39,900 years old.
w=300&h=300 300w, https://misfitsandheroes.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/cave-art-altamira-unesco.jpg? w=600&h=600 600w, https://misfitsandheroes.files.wordpress.com/2015/08/cave-art-altamira-unesco.jpg? w=150&h=150 150w" sizes="(max-width: 300px) 100vw, 300px" / At first glance, it seems to be a glaring omission of Spain’s notable cave art, especially that of Altamira, El Castillo, and other sites.
Altamira cave paintings are so impressive that the area was designated a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1985.
This is due in part to complex economic and historical factors – Europe is rich, and its Paleolithic art has been studied for well over a century – but also, and perhaps especially, because its spectacular imagery still appeals to our modern sensibilities.” That’s the argument, in a nutshell.