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6 August 2006
Markings on stone tablet may be an ancient inscription

An almost 7,000-year-old stone tablet found in Bulgaria bears carvings that might turn out to form one of the world's oldest inscriptions, a prominent archaeologist said. "These signs are unique and apparently bear a meaning," Nikolai Ovcharov told a press conference.
     Dr Ovcharov said he had received the tablet from a private collector who had unearthed it 20 years ago. The collector asked to remain anonymous because he risked prosecution for looting or criminal possession of antiquities. The tablet six centimetres long and about 7.5 centimetres wide carries five distinct signs, each made up of two elements, Dr Ovcharov said. "This could be the prototype of a script," he added.
     Dr Ovcharov said the carvings could be part of the same protoscript as markings on two similar tablets found in Bulgaria many years ago and dating back to the fifth millennium BCE.

Source: Daily Ireland (4 August 2006)

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