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Despite a growing body of evidence suggesting Neanderthals may have been cognitively similar to modern humans, a lack of art seemed to be the "the last bastion" for the argument that Neanderthals were much different from us, Finlayson said.
Most have been unearthed in Europe, but others have been found as far away as Siberia, extending their distribution across much of Eurasia, although with many gaps, such as the Mediterranean outside Italy.
The Venus of Renancourt is said to depict a woman's shapely body with large breasts and buttocks but does not have any hands or feet while the head is virtually featureless, much like other similar Venus statues There have been many attempts to explain what their importance was to the prehistoric cultures who made them.
Some experts speculate that they are emblems of security or were fertility icons and some figures appear to represent pregnant women.
They had found Neanderthal cut marks on bones and tools before, but they had never seen anything like this.
The researchers used Neanderthal tools to test how this geometric design was made — and to rule out the possibility the "artwork" wasn't just the byproduct of butchery.
It was replaced with a carefully carved ring that probably allowed the figure to be suspended like a pendant.
The figurine is very similar to the so-called Venuses of Europe’s tool-making Gravettian culture.
These prehistoric works of art also had crazily proportioned breasts, buttocks and genitals, as well as curiously downplayed heads, arms and legs.
They were created between 22,000 and 27,000 years ago, but this new find is much older than that.
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