The oldest map in the world / Dates from the Bronze Age

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An ancient artifact believed to be the world’s oldest star map is to go on display at the British Museum. Called “Sky Nebra”, the bronze disk is widely believed to be 3,600 years old, dating back to the Bronze Age. It was discovered in Germany in 1999 and is considered one of the most important archaeological finds of the 20th century.

But its discovery has also been controversial, with a small number of researchers disputing its authenticity.

The Nebra disk measures about 30 cm and is adorned with gold symbols representing the Sun, Moon, stars, solstices and other cosmic phenomena.

According to Unesco, which includes the artifact on its global list of important historical documents, the disc provides a unique insight into humanity’s early knowledge of the heavens. It belongs to the Museum of German Prehistory in Halle, but is being loaned to the British Museum – for the first time in 15 years.

“The Nebra Sky Disc and the Sun Pendant are two of the most remarkable surviving objects from Bronze Age Europe,” said Neil Wilkin, curator of The World Of Stonehenge exhibition.

“Both were found hundreds of kilometers from Stonehenge, and we will use them to illuminate a large interconnected world that existed around the ancient monument, spanning Britain, Ireland and continental Europe,” he added.

The original purpose of Stonehenge remains a mystery, but the stone circle built around 2,500 BC is aligned with the movements of the Sun. The exhibition “The World Of Stonehenge” will be open from February 17 to July 17 next year.

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