Skip to comments.Life-sized sculptures of dromedaries found in Saudi Arabia
Posted on 02/16/2018 12:23:24 PM PST by Red Badger
High relief of standing dromedary on sandstone spur at center of image. Credit: © CNRS/MADAJ, R. Schwerdtner _________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________________
At a remarkable site in northwest Saudi Arabia, a CNRS archaeologist and colleagues from the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH) have discovered camelid sculptures unlike any others in the region. They are thought to date back to the first centuries BC or AD. The find sheds new light on the evolution of rock art in the Arabian Peninsula and is the subject of an article published in Antiquity (February 2018).
Located in the province of Al Jawf in northwest Saudi Arabia, Camel Site, as it is known, was explored in 2016 and 2017 by a Franco-Saudi research team. The sculptures, some incomplete, were executed on three rocky spurs there. Though natural erosion has partly destroyed some of the works, as well as any traces of tools, the researchers were able to identify a dozen or so reliefs of varying depths representing camelids and equids. The life-sized sculpted animals are depicted without harnessing in a natural setting. One scene in particular is unprecedented: it features a dromedary meeting a donkey, an animal rarely represented in rock art. Some of the works are thus thematically very distinct from the representations often found in this region. Technically, they also differ from those discovered at other Saudi sitesfrequently simple engravings of dromedaries without reliefor the sculpted facades of Al-Hijr (Madâin Sâlih). In addition, certain Camel Site sculptures on upper rock faces demonstrate indisputable technical skills. Camel Site can now be considered a major showcase of Saudi rock art in a region especially propitious for archaeological discovery.
Though the site is hard to date, comparison with a relief at Petra (Jordan) leads the researchers to believe the sculptures were completed in the first centuries BC or AD. Its desert setting and proximity to caravan routes suggest Camel Siteill suited for permanent settlementwas a stopover where travelers could rest or a site of worship.
Explore further: Wall carvings in Saudi Arabia appear to offer earliest depiction of dogs
More information: Guillaume Charloux et al, The art of rock relief in ancient Arabia: new evidence from the Jawf Province, Antiquity (2018). DOI: 10.15184/aqy.2017.221
Journal reference: Antiquity search and more info website
Provided by: CNRS
Read more at: https://phys.org/news/2018-02-life-sized-sculptures-dromedaries-saudi-arabia.html#jCp
And they’re beautiful, too. Lovely detail.
Somebody had a lot of time on their hands...................
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Well, ancient peoples in that desert, were inspired by their camels???? Not much else to draw pictures of in that barren landscape.
Just another thread that is useless without pictures....
Nevermind, slow loading here.
So did the Mt Rushmore sculptor. Years and years.
Saw a meme with a piece of the mountain blocked out for DJT. Lovely.
G G G Ping
They still love their camels more than their women.
Well, they DO look better...................
So am I totally in the wrong for seeing a Star Wars AT-AT in that??
Probably has an orifice or two drilled in the rock.
2000 years too early..................
They’d walk a mile for a camel.
...and then along came Muhammad, the rubble razer
Most cultures, ancient and modern, erect statues, paint pictures, and create sculptures of females they find alluring.
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