Rock art sheds new light on the Neolithic transition in Arabia

rock art - news 2

Photograph and tracing of rock art panel at Shuwaymis. White lines show the original hunting scene; blue lines show a later herding scene which includes the re-engraved shapes of a hunter and three dogs

Our study of the engraved rock art recorded on 254 panels in Shuwaymis, Ha’il Province, has shed more light on the Neolithic transition from hunting and gathering to economies utilising domesticated livestock in this part of the Arabian Peninsula.

In particular, the re-use of hunting panels to create herding scenes, the re-engraving of hunting figures into herders, and the re-carving of hunting dogs into pastoral scenes all suggest that the engravers of herding panels still identified with the depicted hunters.

Read more in Hunters and herders: Exploring the Neolithic transition in the rock art of Shuwaymis, Saudi Arabia.