Archeologists in France have uncovered a stone plate believed to be 12,000 years old containing engravings of what appears to be a horse and other animals.

The researchers found the stone -- which has markings on both sides -- while excavating a hunting site near the south-western French city Angouleme.

Archeologists also uncovered four fireplaces, bone remains and a flint post at the site.

According to the French National Archaeological Research Institute, the plate measures about 25 centimetres long, 18 centimetres wide and about three centimetres thick with a “very realistic” engraving of a horse, a deer, a wild cattle, and a partial engraving of another horse.

What appears to be the backside of a horse is also shown on the other side of the plate.

The researchers suggest more work is needed to determine additional information on the artifact, such as its true age and how the engraving should be interpreted.

The plate will be available for public viewing in Angouleme during the National Days of Archeology next weekend.