Analysis showed Beauty And The Beast and Rumpelstiltskin to be about 4,000 years old.
And a folk tale called The Smith And The Devil, about a blacksmith selling his soul in a pact with the Devil in order to gain supernatural abilities, was estimated to go back 6,000 years to the Bronze Age.
As much as I want to believe. I have a hard time understanding how they could track back a story without written proof.
From my understanding, linguistically, we know about when languages broke off from each other. When combined with our understanding of human migration, the researchers were able to trace back stories common to different cultures to where it originated. A similar technique has been used to create an idea of what proto-Indo-Eurpoean sounded like. Of course, there is migration of ideas, but I assume the researchers would have accounted for that.