Face of the 26,000-year-old woman! FIRST EVER portrait of a woman was carved into a tusk of a woolly mammoth (and it’s smaller than a thumb)

Carved from a woolly mammoth tusk 26,000 years ago, the earliest portrait of a woman ever created is set to go on display at the British Museum.

Ancient: The oldest known portrait of a woman. The 4.8cm work is sculpted from mammoth ivory and was found at Dolní Vestonice, Moravia, in the Czech Republic, it is around 26,000 years old

The astonishing piece of art, smaller than a thumb at just 4.8cm high, was created in the middle of the last Ice Age, in a valley in what is now Moravia in the Czech Republic, using stone tools.

Experts believe it to be the earliest ever portrait of a woman and, among with a range of other ancient works of art, it is set to go on display at a groundbreaking new exhibition at the British Museum.

The show, entitled Ice Age Art: Arrival Of The Modern Mind, will juxtapose Ice Age art with modern works by the likes of Moore, Mondrian and Matisse to highlight how as far back as 40,000 years ago humans were already using figurative art to interpret their world.

Striking examples will be displayed as works of art rather than archaeological finds, alongside major works of modern art for comparison.

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