Sex dating de Ulm

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The lion-headed figurine is the oldest-known zoomorphic (animal-shaped) sculpture in the world, and the oldest-known uncontested example of figurative art.It has been determined to be between 35,000 and 40,000 years old by carbon dating of material from the layer in which it was found, and thus, is associated with the archaeological Aurignacian culture.Schmid later classified this feature as a pubic triangle, Male European cave lions often lacked distinctive manes, so the absence of a mane could not determine categorically that the figurine was that of a lioness, and a debate about its gender ensued among some involved in the research and the popular press.Kurt Wehrberger of the Ulm Museum stated that the statue had become an "icon of the feminist movement".The back is severely damaged and the legs are missing some ivory lamellae.The ears, eye-holes, two-thirds of the mouth and nose, and the back of the head are preserved.For approximately thirty years, the fragments lay forgotten at the nearby Museum of Ulm.

The figurine was disassembled into its individual parts and newly discovered fragments were added along with the old ones, allowing further completion of areas of the head, back, and right side of the body, and artificial additions used during the first restoration were discarded.

Although an objective determination of the gender of the Löwenmensch figurine is impossible, debate continues, with the most common interpretation of the fragment being a stylized male sex organ.

The Löwenmensch figurine lay in a chamber almost 30 metres from the entrance of the Stadel cave and was accompanied by many other remarkable objects.

Bone tools and worked antlers were found, along with jewellery consisting of pendants, beads, and perforated animal teeth.

The chamber was probably a special place, possibly used as a storehouse or hiding-place, or maybe as an area for cultic rituals.

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