A New “Oldest” Found

I’ve mentioned before on this blog how archaeologists are constantly finding human cultural items that break records for “the oldest”: the oldest city, the oldest stone, temple, etc. Now here’s another one.

world’s oldest known cave painting (so far)

Two great things about this cave painting: it’s in Indonesia, and it’s of a pig.

“‘The people who made it were fully modern, they were just like us, they had all of the capacity and the tools to do any painting that they liked,’ [Aubert] added.”

Also, the painting is accompanied by stenciled hand prints that are made by placing your hand on the wall, filling your mouth with powdery dye, and blowing the dye onto your hand and the surrounding area. The last line of the article says that “the team are hoping to try to extract DNA samples from residual saliva.” Wouldn’t it be cool if they could do this and then sequence the DNA? And what if they were able to find a modern person who shares distinctive DNA with that unknown artist who made these hand stencils so many thousands of years ago? If they do, I think it’s a good guess they will find that person living right near the cave. That’s often how it works out. Modern-day relatives of the Ice Man were found living not far from where his body was discovered.

8 thoughts on “A New “Oldest” Found

  1. Hrm, I wondered what the “shelf life” of DNA is and the first thing that popped up in search results was this:

    “What’s the shelf life of DNA? About a month to a million years, theoretically. The decay rate of DNA depends on the conditions of its storage and packaging. Above all, it depends on whether the DNA is exposed to heat, water, sunlight, and oxygen.”

    https://slate.com/technology/2013/02/dna-testing-richard-iii-how-long-does-dna-last.html#:~:text=What's%20the%20shelf%20life%20of,water%2C%20sunlight%2C%20and%20oxygen.

    Liked by 2 people

      1. Ha, I know. way different than something that’s sitting in a sealed container. I guess you could say the shelf life for anything sitting in the wild would be “up in the air” so-to-speak. Do you believe the Earth is really really old or more like 6000 years as some say?

        Liked by 2 people

  2. I think it’s way older than 6000. That figure was reached by making some assumptions about the geneaologies in Genesis that I don’t think are valid. The Hebrew word “father” can also mean grandfather or male ancestor, and there are examples elsewhere in Scripture of genealogists that hit the highlights but don’t name every step in the family line (e.g. in Matthew).

    See my FAQs page for more on this.

    About the cave DNA, I assume the atmospheric conditions in the cave are what give these researchers hope that they can recover some.

    Liked by 2 people

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