15,000 Year Old Rock Art Discovered in Egypt

Rock Craft Qurta 000

Making use of a new technologies known as optically promoted luminescence (OSL), a team of Belgian researchers and Professor John Coleman Darnell of Yale have figured out that Egyptian petroglyphs uncovered at the east bank of the Nile are regarding 15,000 years old, making them the oldest rock craft in Egypt and potentially the earliest recognized graphic record in North Africa.

The dating consequences are going to be published in the December issue of Antiquity (Vol. 85 Problem 330, pp. 1184-- 1193).

The site of the rock craft panels is near the modern community of Qurta, about 40km south of the Upper-Egyptian town of Edfu. First seen by Canadian archaeologists in the very early 1960s, they were subsequently forgotten and transfered by the Belgian objective in 2005. The rediscovery was declared in the Project Exhibition room of Antiquity in 2007.

The rock craft at Qurta is represented by hammered and incised naturalistic-style images of aurochs as well as further wild animals. On the basis of their intrinsic attributes (content, strategy, as well as variety), their patina as well as level of weathering, and also the archaeological as well as geomorphological context, these petroglyphs have certainly been traced to the late Pleistocene time, especially to the late Palaeolithic period (roughly 23,000 to 11,000 ago). This makes them more or less contemporary with European art from the last Ice Age-- such as the wall-paintings of Lascaux and Altamira caves.

"The palaeolithic rock art at Qurta exposes that the prominent cave craft of the late Pleistocene in Europe was not an isolated sensation ( via news.yale.edu ).

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