This article was translated by John R. Bopp

In the last few years, the names of Bicayne caves have been showing up in media all over the world.  A few months ago, it was Atxurra cave.  This week, it was Armintxe that has been appearing in the world’s press.

It’s done so thanks to the legacy its last inhabitants left us about 14,000 years ago in what is today the Land of the Basques.  Those people, which everything indicates were the direct predecessors of modern Basques, entered those caves and left us a message on the wall that has lasted over 15 millennia.  It’s a message that says they were here, and that they were profoundly similar to us, with artistic capabilities similar to those of modern humans (and far superior to our doodling).

Etchings from 14,000 years ago were discovered in Armintxe cave, Lekeitio, Biscay
Etchings from 14,000 years ago were discovered in Armintxe cave, Lekeitio, Biscay

All you have to do is look at the photographs of these etchings to understand the immense skill of these people.  One can’t help but ask how they could have created such beauty at the bottom of a cave, in torchlight, 15,000 years ago.

Little separates us from them.  They only lived to about 30 on average, their language was less “sophisticated”, there were no books or universities, but their ability to create art was not at all inferior to what we have today.  It’s clear that, in many ways, the fifteen millennia that separate us are the blink of an eye.

Without a doubt, standing face to face with our own humanity, free of adornments, accessories, technology, or any type of fuss is deeply exciting.

Detail of a lion that makes up part of the 14,000-year-old etchings found in Armintxe cave, Lekeitio, Basque Country
Detail of a lion that makes up part of the 14,000-year-old etchings found in Armintxe cave, Lekeitio, Basque Country

Like we said before, media from around the world have picked up on this discovery.  We’ll leave you here with an example, but the collection of the most relevant information can ve found on our scoop.it servce; we’ll also be adding new stories to there as we come across them.

BBC – 14/10/2016 – Gran Bretaña

Cave art: Etchings hailed as ‘Iberia’s most spectacular’

Cave art as much as 14,500 years old has been pronounced “the most spectacular and impressive” ever discovered on the Iberian peninsula. About 50 etchings were found in the Basque town of Lekeitio. They include horses, bison, goats and – in a radical departure from previously discovered Palaeolithic art in the Biscay province – two lions.

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Vietnam News – 14/10/2016 – Vietnam

14,000-year-old rock paintings found in Spanish resort town

Rock paintings dating back about 14,000 years have been found in a cave in a Spanish seaside resort town, the local government announced on Thursday. About 50 paintings measuring up to 150 centimetres and depicting horses, bisons and lions were found in a cave “extremely difficult to access” and located under a building in the centre of Lekeitio in the Basque country, senior local official Andoni Iturbe said.

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China Orr – 14/10/2016 -China

“Stunning” cave etchings discovered in Spain’s Basque region

The Deputy General of the Basque region of Bizkaia in northern Spain has announced the discovery of a series of “stunning” cave etchings in a cave in the middle of the town of Lekeitio on the north coast of Spain. At the official presentation of the discovery on Thursday, Unai Rementeria highlighted that the etchings, which are thought to date back 14,000 years are “according to experts the collection of paintings which is the most spectacular in the Iberian Peninsula.”

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All the information we’ve gathered can be found on our scoop.it service.

 

 

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