In its article “Carved idol from the Urals shatters expert views on birth of ritual art” the Guardian recently reported on the latest study with the name Antiquity paper, published by the Cambridge university, on the archeological treasure from Yekaterinburg, the 11,500 years old wooden sculpture called Shigir Idol. This is the one of the oldest pieces of monumental art ever uncovered. It could only survive due to the unique conditions of the Shigir peat bog located about 100km north of Yekaterinburg, where the Idol was discovered on 24 January 1894 during gold mining.
Archaeologist Professor Thomas Terberger, of Göttingen University, in Germany, one of the authors of the Antiquity paper says: “At that time (11,500 years ago), Europe and Asia were still emerging from the ice age. There were no farmers then. The only humans in this part of the world at this time were hunter-gatherers. Yet they created the Shigir Idol. The discovery of its antiquity therefore changes, dramatically, – our views about the birth of ritual art.”
The Shigir Idol is exhibited in Local History Museum in Yekaterinburg.