The Netherlands’ Prehistoric Goddess (ca. 10,000 BC)

By: The Scribe on Saturday, January 5, 2008



The ‘Venus van Mierlo’ was a prehistoric engraving of a dancing girl, found in the Netherlands. Little else is known about it.

Many pieces of ancient art have little information known about them, other than the context of where they were found and the approximate time period they were from. However, this should not discount their value as incredibly important testaments to human creativity in history. Whether appreciated for their historic value or their artistic merit alone, one would be doing a great disservice to their ancient creators if one was to ignore these tangible objects of the human past.

One of these ancient pieces of art that little is know about is the Venus van Mierlo. This little engraving was found on a piece of sandstone in the Netherlands, at a site called Geldrop-Mierlo in North Brabant province. The image engraved on the stone is of a girl who appears to be dancing – her legs and arms swing out in motion, and she is wearing a low, hip-hugging garment.

Called the ‘Venus of Mierlo’ as a bit of a joke – a testament to the ancient Greek goddess Venus, though the Greeks certainly established their gods thousands of years after this little engraving would have been made – the cultural and religious significance of the piece is completely unknown.

The site where it was found is believed to have been occupied by reindeer hunters, and it is entirely possible that the image of this dancing girl had something to do with their religious notions about the hunt… or, perhaps someone simply was bored and drew a picture on the stone.

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