Scientists at the National Archives in Trencin, Slovakia believe that they have found the world's oldest emoji in a legal document that dates back to the year 1635.

A lawyer named Jan Ladislaides, living in a village next to the Strazov Mountains of Slovakia in 1635 was reviewing municipal account documents and in appreciation he signed his go-ahead by drawing a small circle with two dots and a line, an image that we call the "smiley-face emoji" today. 

"We found a smiley face that dates from the 17th century, from 1635 by notary Jan Ladislaides next to his signature," Peter Brindza, head of the archive in the Slovakian town of Trencin reportedly said. ​"I do not know if it's the oldest Slovakian smiley or the world's oldest. But it is certainly one of the oldest in the Trencin region," he said.

Though the drawing that has been believed to be an emoji did not clearly look like a smiley face but could also be interpreted as a straight-face expression. That would mean Ladislaides had some doubt rather than approval. However, Brindza said that the picture that he is citing had a passage following it which specified the lawyer's approval for the documents.

Until now, the oldest known smiley in the world was in a 1648 poem named "To Fortune" by Robert Herrick, from England in 1648. This recent discovery by the Slovakian scientists beats the previous one by thirteen years.

Archivists have also discovered an image in the same document of a pointing hand that seems like it belongs to a clown. However, they could not find out its context.

Over six billion emojis are sent and received every day throughout the world. Japan had created the first set of digital emojis in 1999, and the word "emoji" was added to the Oxford English Dictionary in 2013.