British Museum to display world’s ‘oldest map of stars’

October 18, 2021: The Nebra Sky Disc, thought to be the world’s oldest map of stars is about to go on display at the British Museum.

This ancient object is believed to be 3,600 years old, dating from the historic Bronze Age. The disc had been unearthed in Germany in 1999 and is now considered one of the most significant historical finds of the 20th Century.

But its discovery has also been termed to be controversial, with a group of scholars disputing in its authenticity. The Nebra disc is about 30cm in diameter and is fashioned with a blue-green patina emblazoned with gold symbols that represent the Sun, Moon, stars, solstices and other cosmic phenomena.

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As stated by Unesco, the disc gives a unique peek into humanity’s early knowledge of space. It belongs to Germany’s State Museum of Prehistory in Halle but it is now being loaned to the British Museum. This is the first time that it has been loaned abroad in 15 years.

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The British Museum stated that it would be set on display as a part of an exhibition on Stonehenge, which will be opened in February. According to Neil Wilkin ,curator of The World Of Stonehenge exhibition: “It’s going to be eye-opening”.

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