An English version of the press release is printed below:
La Cova del Comte, in Pedreguer, is hiding a treasure in her depths that may become one of the jewels of the prehistoric cultural heritage of the Mediterranean. That, at least, is the assertion of a group of five expert archaeologists, who in recent months have conducted a preliminary study sponsored by the Foundation Cirne of Xabia, a foundation dedicated to research and the dissemination of heritage.
The "treasure" is in the interior of a large gallery which is accessible only by crawling for about 30 metres through a crack in the rock from the first chamber. Archaeological remains have been found as well as several examples of Paleolithic art made between 16.000 and 18,000 years before the current era. Among these are paintings.
The relevance of the discovery inside the cave lies in several factors. Firstly "the existence of cave paintings inside dark cavities," is something without precedent in the Mediterranean, since Levantine rock art is always found in shelters open to the outside, according to archaeologist Juan de Dios Boronat.
"We are not talking about a case of Levantine rock art, of which we have hundreds of examples, this is an extremely rare case, and even more so in the Mediterranean area, in addition, it is almost triple the age of Levantine art," remarked archaeologist Josep Casabó.
Another peculiarity which makes this cave unique is that it combines pictorial art with the art of engraving, as the president of Foundation Cirne, Enric Martinez noted. He stressed that now is when the research work is really going to start. Archaeologists suspect that with some further work the cavity can bring even more positive surprises. "The cave is very large, and now we'll turn on the light and survey every inch of the walls," he said. "this is not the end, it is the beginning."
On this occasion, the Foundation Cirne found a collaborator in the Pedreguer Town Council, but the project would not have been possible without the collaboration provided by the Ministry of Culture, the Alicante Fire Consortium, and contributions made by several Pedreguer companies such as Rolser, Masymas and Manufactures Miralles.
The study of the cave has been promoted by Cirne and carried out by archaeologists Josep Casabó, Juan de Dios Boronat, Ximo Bolufer, Marco Aurelio Esquembre and Pasqual Costa.
Pedreguer Mayor, Ferrús Sergi said yesterday that his government would not hesitate to "use all means" at the service of this investigation, "having seen the enthusiasm of the team" of archaeologists before the challenge of bringing to light all that the Cova del Comte is hiding.