The Ancient Egyptian ‘Masterpiece’ Is So Realistic Researchers Have Pinpointed The Exact Bird Species It Represents

The birds painted on the facsimile are rock pigeons, which can still be found year-round in Egypt. (Image credit: Public Domain; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Antiquity Publications Ltd.)

An ancient Egyptian “masterpiece” painting of birds flying and perching on a verdant swamp is so detailed that modern researchers can tell exactly which species the artisans illustrated more than 3,300 years ago.

The painting was discovered about a century ago on the walls of the Amarna Palace, a ancient egyptian capital located about 186 miles (300 kilometers) south of Cairo. Although previous research has examined the mural’s wildlife, the new study is the first to delve into the identity of all the birds, some of which have unnatural markings.

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