In pictures, scientists reveal a surprise about the history of the archaeological site of “Al-Jamal” in Saudi Arabia

In pictures, scientists reveal a surprise about the history of the archaeological site of “Al-Jamal” in Saudi Arabia

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In pictures, scientists reveal a surprise about the history of the archaeological site of “Al-Jamal” in Saudi Arabia

The archaeological team had estimated at the beginning of the discovery of the site (in 2018) that its history may go back to ancient times not exceeding 2000 years, after a comparison was made of the sculptures at the site of Al-Jamal with similar ones from the Nabatean site in Petra (Jordan).

The site of Al-Jamal is one of the exceptional sites of rock art in the north of the Arabian Peninsula, and it consists of three rocky outcrops; Dozens of life-size camels and wild donkeys were sculpted in it.

The site of the camels is located 8 kilometers north of the city of Sakaka, and includes carvings of no less than eleven camels and two donkeys or mules, and it is clear that the skilled sculptors respected lineage in their work.

8 thousand years

In a new study, these results were documented in the Journal of Archaeological Sciences, led by three archaeologists from the National Center for Scientific Research, the Max Planck Institute (Germany) and King Saud University (Saudi Arabia).

A wide range of skills and methods were used for direct and indirect dating, including tool-mark analyzes and rock erosion analysis.

A test trench opened between two rocky outcrops revealed a collection of animal bones (which were radiocarbon dated) and stone tools, both evidence of occupation of the site.

Scholars say this information combines with the fact that the carvings were made using stone tools, at the latest during the 6th millennium BC, which makes it likely that the camel site was home to the world’s oldest life-size animal carvings.

unexpected surprise

It is noteworthy that the archaeological site of Al-Jamal is located in an isolated area, surrounded by private property, north of the city of Sakaka. According to the researchers, the discovery of the site came thanks to the local residents and their insistence on showing these sculptures to a team of French and Saudis.

Site survey work began in 2016 and 2017, to be announced preliminary results in February of 2018, the latest results about the history of the site comes as a big surprise.

Although the clients indicated in a study documenting the discovery and published in the “Antiquette” periodical three years ago, that the inhabitants of the camel site may have been influenced by their neighbors from the Nabataean and Parthian civilizations, the history of this prehistoric site will make archaeologists reconsider their accounts. .

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