Archaeologists in Australia have made an extraordinary discovery which suggests that the Australian Aboriginal people have been living in Australia for at least 65,000 years.
The discoveries are considered to be completely ground breaking as previous estimates by archaeologists placed the arrival of the Aboriginal people in the country approximately 18,000 years later than that.
NEW EVIDENCE SUGGESTS ABORIGINALS ARRIVED IN AUSTRALIA 18,000 YEARS EARLIER THAN PREVIOUSLY ASSUMED
The discoveries were made in the Northern Territory rock shelter.
This site has been exposed to meticulous archaeological excavation four times since the 1970s and has yielded a vast amount of artifacts which have widened the pool of knowledge about the Aborigines’ early history exponentially.
However, this dig was considered to be particularly special as researchers struck a deal with the Gundjeihmi Aboriginal Corporation which represents the interests of the indigenous Mirrar people.
The Mirrar people worked alongside the academics in the course of this particular dig, helping them with the excavation and the curation of the artifacts that were uncovered.
In the course of this very special excavation, the researchers uncovered what they believe to be the world’s oldest stone axes and ochre crayons which they believe were used to create art by the ancient people.
According to Associate Professor Christ Clarkson of the University of Queensland, the axes were beautiful and made with a great deal of sophistication.
He describes them as been embedded with grooves and says that the handle was ingeniously attached using resin.
Professor Clarkson says that the artistic material is of great interest to the researchers.
The crayons, which are comprised of mica and ground ochre, imply that the ancient people of this region were deeply invested in artistic activity, according to Professor Clarkson.
"This has huge implications for everything from the out-of-Africa story to the extinction of megafauna and Aboriginal peoples' own knowledge of how long they have been in this country, ” said Professor Clarkson in a statement.