The Cave at Lascaux

This passage is about how the cave at Lascaux was found and preserved.

Lexile Level: 920L

Categories: History People & Places


In September, 1940, four teenage boys were walking in a hilly forest in southwestern France. A pine tree had fallen and made a small hole in the ground. They dug and enlarged it. Carefully, they slipped down into the crevice and discovered an amazing cave. On the walls, the boys saw drawings of oxen, horses, and bison that humans had made over 15,000 years before. This cave at Lascaux is a great example of prehistoric art. Stories of hunting bison and bears were drawn on the stone. Brown and black pigments such as ochre, charcoal, and iron oxides were used in the drawings. Scientists learned a lot about how prehistoric man lived from studying these pictures. So many people visited the Lascaux cave that it had to be closed in 1963. The lantern lights and breathing were making the drawings disappear, so a replica of the cave was made nearby for tourists.


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