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see Paleolithic artPaleolithic art
, art produced during the Paleolithic period. Study and knowledge of this art largely have been confined to works discovered at many sites in W Europe, where the most magnificent surviving examples are paintings in a number of caves in N Spain and S France, but
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a Paleolithic cave near the city of Montignac in southern France (Dordogne Department). It was discovered in 1940 and investigated by the French scientist and scholar H. Breuil and others. Engravings and paintings (monochrome and polychrome) of wild horses, prehistoric oxen, deer, mountain goats, bisons, and other animals were found on the walls of the cave. The representations are distinguished by their realism. Particularly unique is the representation of a man with a bird’s head, lying in front of a bison, possibly slain by it. Radiocarbon dating dates the works in the cave to 15,000 B.C. (middle Magdalenian period of the Upper Paleolithic).


Abramova, Z. A. “Liasko—pamiatnik paleoliticheskogo naskal’nogo is-kusstva.” In the collection Pervobytnoe iskusstvo. Novosibirsk, 1971.
Breuil, H. Quatre Cents Siècles d’art pariétal. Montignac, 1952.
Laming, A. Lascaux. Dresden, 1959.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.


the site of a cave in SW France, in the Dordogne: contains Palaeolithic wall drawings and paintings
Collins Discovery Encyclopedia, 1st edition © HarperCollins Publishers 2005