“The Knocknagael Boar Stone is a large Pictish carving dating to about AD 600, dominated by the image of a wild boar. It’s emphasised by spirals and spiky bristles, and surrounded by Pictish symbols. ”

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Elaborate symbols and ornate depictions of animals carved in stone by an ancient Scottish people have given up their secret – to mathematics. Statistical analysis reveals that the shapes are a forgotten written language. The method could help interpret many other enigmatic scripts – and even analyse animal communication.

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