An excavated giant slab with patterns and carvings dating back from the Bronze Age may be the oldest map in Europe according to researchers. The slab known as the Saint-Bélec Slab measures 2 meters by 1.5 meters. It was first uncovered in 1900 by an archeologist named Paul du Chatellier in a prehistoric burial ground. It was found again in 2014 in a castle in France after over a century of it being almost forgotten after moving to different locations throughout the country. After analyzing the markings, the researchers thought that this could possibly be a map. In a study published by the Bulletin of the French Prehistoric Society, the lines and motifs illustrate a region of Finistère in France.

Dr. Clément Nicolas of Bournemouth University, one of the study’s authors, said that the slab may be the oldest map of a location that has been identified. The marks and lines represent the River Odet valley and its river network. Geo-location revealed that the 3D map is 80% accurate . Nicolas mentioned that this is the first time a map has represented an area on a specific scale. He added that this discovery is significant because it highlights the early geographical knowledge of prehistoric people.