The glories of ancient Rome and Greece were but a blip compared to the great age of music and art which began about 35,000 years ago and lasted for roughly 20,000 years.
Artists from the Stone Age reach out and touch the soul of a modern man.
When Pablo Picasso saw the Lascaux (the Sistine Chapel of cave art) he was reduced to a (rare) state of utter humility.
Its walls were festooned with striking pictures of horses and bulls that date from the Ice Age, all rendered with exquisite sophistication and symbolic force.
Upon exiting the cave, an awed Picasso declared, "We have learned nothing in twelve thousand years."
German archeologists have found what may be the world's oldest musical instrument – a flute carved from a mammoth's bone by European Ice Age dwellers more than 35,000 years ago. It is capable of playing relatively complex melodies.
Another group of 22 flutes found in the French Pyrenees have also been dated at up to 30,000 years ago.