Palaeolithic rock-art has recently been found in Aurea cave in the Cantabrian region of northern Spain. The cave is located about 50 metres above the river Deva.
The paintings were found on the 3rd March by Manel Lleras, the President of a caving club, along with his wife, Raquel Hernández, who notified the Museum of archaeology and prehistory of Cantabria (MUPAC) of the discovery.
Museum specialists have carried out a survey and inspection of the cave and decided to close it up in the meantime in order to prevent uncontrolled entry and possible damage.
Dated to 20,000 years old
This cave art, is thought to be pre-Magdalenian and provisionally dated to around 20,000 years, adds to an important corpus in the region.
The Aurea cave consists of narrow corridors and small chambers, whose walls are smooth and white from a thin layer of calcite, providing an excellent surface for parietal decoration.
The art is of a non-figurative type, consisting of rows of red ochre dots applied with the fingertips. The panels close to the mouth of the cave have virtually disappeared, however further inside the art is in an excellent state of preservation.