A 5,000-year-old Norwegian rock carving from the late Stone Age has been destroyed by a teenager who apparently wanted to “improve” it.
The rock carving is one of Norway's most historical sites and showed what is believed to be the first skier in the country. The carving later inspired the emblem for the 1994 Winter Olympic Games.
The unnamed teenager visiting the rock on the island of Tro, off the coast of Nordland, scratched over it with a sharp object in an attempt to make the carving more visible. Instead it's damaged forever.
The youth also tried to “improve” nine other rocks at Tro, which held carvings of moose, whales, boats and seals.
“It's a tragedy, because it's one of the most famous Norwegian historical sites," Bård Anders Langø, the mayor of the nearby Alstahaug Municipality, told The Local.
“We may not ever be able to see the pictogram of the skier as it was originally made 4,000 years ago,” said Langø.
The teen probably didn’t understand what he was doing when he messed with the rock, but now is hopefully very aware of the irreversible damaged he caused.
Interestingly, this is not the first time someone had destroyed artifacts with the intention of making things better.
Just recently, an elderly German woman filled out an $89,000 piece of artwork at a museum after she mistook it for an incomplete crossword puzzle. When she was summoned to the police, she explained that she was merely following the instructions written next to the piece of art that read "Insert words."
As we know, common sense isn't always so common Perhaps it is time that such artifacts displayed in museums and public places are protected with boundary walls or kept within glass enclosures so visitors do not have close contact with them.