Engraved stone found in Philippine school

A rare inscribed stone written in an ancient Filipino script has been found in Masbate province in the Philippines, although there are already doubts over the authenticity of the find. It already has a sexy name though – the Rizal Stone, not so much directly named for the national hero, but after the Rizal Elementary School where the stone was found in (the school was in turn, named after the aforementioned national hero).

Ancient stone engraving found in elementary school
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GMA News, 27 June 2011

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Youtube, 20 June 2011

Anthropologists have discovered ancient writing on a large, flat stone which had been long used as a foot rug in a local elementary school.

A GMA News report said that the “Rizal stone” (named after Rizal Elementary School in Ticao Island, Masbate), where students used to wipe their slippers, may be the first stone artifact to be discovered containing writing in Baybayin, a script used in the Philippines during the 13th century.

The stone went unnoticed until a teacher saw the markings on it. The ancient writings on the stone were revealed after it was cleaned, according to Dr. Francisco Datar from the University of the Philippines (UP) Anthropology Department.


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Author: Noel Tan

Dr Noel Hidalgo Tan is the Senior Specialist in Archaeology at SEAMEO-SPAFA, the Southeast Asian Regional Centre for Archaelogy and Fine Arts.

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