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Stone carving is the most ancient attested from of art. The first sculptures were carved directly into the rock, noteworthy examples being the Palaeolithic and Petroglyph Venuses from the Neolithic Period. Subsequently, the sculptures were made from blocks of stone extracted from quarries. Stone carving was one of the characteristic creative techniques of classical Greek art.
Human and animal figures were the exclusive source of inspiration during the prehistoric period. Stone was the favourite material for ornamental and symbolic sculpture that adorned religious buildings. Like painting and stained-glass windows, sculpture represented evangelical themes. Stone sculpture mainly complemented architectural elements.