Archaeology Magazine

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Prehistoric Female Artists Stenciled Their Hands

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Hand Stencils Paleolithic Spain UNIVERSITY PARK, PENNSYLVANIA--As many as three-fourths of the hand stencils found in caves in southern France and northern Spain were made by females, according to an analysis of the size of the handprints conducted by Dean Snow of Pennsylvania State University. “When scaled against modern hands, stencils from 32 caves in France and Spain tended to fall near the ends of that continuum, suggesting that sexual dimorphism (the difference between male and female) was more pronounced during the Upper Paleolithic,” he said. “It wasn’t just a bunch of guys out there chasing bison around,” Snow added.