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Steatite Female Figurine

Ritual usage

Grimaldi type, Italy

Around 25 000 years


The Grimaldi caves in Liguria yielded fifteen figurines […], the majority representing women in the late stages of pregnancy and with expressly enlarged vulvas.
R. White, L’art Préhistorique dans le monde. Editions de la Martinière, Paris, 1993


Commentaire : 

Excavations in the Grimaldi caves of Italy produced some fifteen female figurines dated to 25 000 years ago. These small figurines all represent naked and stylized female bodies that were sculpted following the same procedure and perhaps by the same group of people.

The faces are simple, the legs are tapered and the arms merge into the torso. On the other hand, significant attention is paid to the breasts, belly and genitals, which are systematically disproportionate and prominent, as if alluding to the late stages of pregnancy.

In the late glacial climatic conditions of Europe 25 000 years ago, maternal and infant mortality quickly endanger the survival of small isolated nomadic groups. In this context, the Grimaldi figurines could represent talismans that protected the mother and newborn. They testify to the extreme attention that hunters paid to the material and symbolic protection of women who ensure the future of these groups.

Technical informations

Length: 05:33

Resolution : Full HD / 1920x1080

Video format : 16 / 9

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