The entire scientific world was rocked, so to speak. For now they had not merely bits of fur or bone to tell them about the animals of distant past but eyewitness accounts. Here were portraits of these animals made from nature.
Some were done in colour (it has since been established that prehistoric artists used ferric oxide and manganese peroxide which they pounded and mixed with fat to obtain a variety of hues—from yellow to red, in the case of ferric oxide, and from brown to black in the case of manganese peroxide), others were just scratched or hewed on rock. There were whole herds of bisons, deer, horses and mammoths!
Soon it transpired that there were sculptors as well as painters among prehistoric artists, for figurines of animals modelled from clay were found in caves.
The very fact that primitive men could draw and model was in itself an epoch-making discovery.
But as more and more rock paintings movement among the bushes at the edge of were found and studied, curious aspects came to the fore.
It was noticed, for instance, that most with spears at the ready blocked their path, of the animals in rock paintings were presented as either wounded or dead, or, at the more hunters emerged into the clearing, very least, with an axe or a big stone drawn on top. What could be the meaning of this?