10 characteristics of Venus of Willendorf

8 months ago

The Venus of Willendorf is a small limestone figurine believed to have been created between 28,000 and 25,000 BC, during the Upper Paleolithic. It was discovered in 1908 by archaeologist Josef Szombathy near the town of Willendorf, Austria. This prehistoric figure is considered one of the most emblematic and enigmatic works of art of antiquity. Although its exact meaning is still debated, it is believed to represent fertility and motherhood.

Main characteristics of the Venus of Willendorf:

  • Size: The Venus of Willendorf measures approximately 11 centimeters in height, making it a small but notable figurine.
  • Rounded shape: The figure has a rounded and bulging shape, emphasizing sexual attributes and fertility.
  • Absence of face: The statuette lacks distinctive facial features. Instead, prominent breasts, plump abdomen and exaggerated genitals are depicted.
  • Anatomical Details: Despite the lack of a face, the Venus of Willendorf displays elaborate anatomical details such as fat folds, navel, and vulva lips.
  • Material: It was carved from limestone, a common material in the region where it was found.


  • Coloration: The statuette has acquired a dark tone due to the passage of time and the environment in which it was buried.
  • Posture: The Venus of Willendorf is represented standing, with her arms resting on her breasts and her hands resting on her rounded abdomen.
  • Use of Symbolism: The figurine is believed to have been a symbol of fertility and motherhood, as it features physical characteristics that are commonly associated with female reproductive capacity.
  • Paleolithic culture: The Venus of Willendorf is a testament to rock art in the Upper Paleolithic and provides valuable information about the beliefs and practices of prehistoric societies.
  • Icon of art history: It is considered one of the oldest and most recognizable representations of the human figure in the history of art.


Comparative table of the characteristics of the Venus of Willendorf:

CharacteristicDescription
Size11cm high
ShapeRounded and bulging
Facial featuresThe Venus of Willendorf lacks a face
Anatomical detailsFolds of fat, navel, and vulva lips
Materiallimestone
ColorationDark tone due to the passage of time
PositionStanding with your arms resting on your chest
SymbolismSymbol of fertility and motherhood
CulturePaleolithic
art iconOne of the oldest representations of the human figure

Despite its small size, the Venus of Willendorf has left a significant mark on the history of art and has allowed us to understand a little more about our prehistoric roots. Its rounded shape and anatomical details suggest a focus on fertility and motherhood, crucial elements in the survival of any society. Although its exact meaning may be the subject of speculation, this statuette invites us to reflect on the importance of the female figure in our history and in our lives.

The Venus of Willendorf is an ancient masterpiece that represents fertility and motherhood in a symbolic and powerful way. Its presence reminds us of our prehistoric roots and teaches us about the beliefs and practices of Paleolithic societies. No matter how many thousands of years have passed since it was created, the Venus of Willendorf remains a timeless icon of art and femininity.



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ENCICLOPEDIA DE CARACTERÍSTICAS (2024) 10 characteristics of Venus of Willendorf, en 10caracteristicas.com. https://10caracteristicas.com/en/10-characteristics-of-venus-of-willendorf/ (Consultado el: 22-06-2024)

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