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Medieval Mickey Mouse?

The fresco uncovered in Austria (top) and Disney's Mickey Mouse
The fresco uncovered in Austria (top) and Disney's Mickey Mouse

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KLAGENFURT, Austria -- Restoration work on an Austrian church has uncovered a 700-year-old fresco that some say bears a striking resemblance to Mickey Mouse.

The "medieval Mickey" is one of a group of animals and mythical creatures surrounding St Christopher on the exterior of a church in the village of Malta in the province of Carinthia.

Christopher, the patron saint of travellers, is shown standing in a river.

Art historian Eduard Mahlknecht said the mouse-like creature could be beaver or a weasel.

The fresco dates from around 1300, Mahlknecht said.

Malta's mayor, Hans Peter Schaar, joked that "perhaps Hollywood could become our partner city."

-- contributed to this report

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