Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

At Nature: Is 44 kya Indonesian rock painting the oldest mythological art?

arroba Email

Some of the human figures have tails and snouts:

The 4.5-metre-long panel features reddish-brown forms that seem to depict human-like figures hunting local animal species. Previously, rock art found in European sites dated to around 14,000 to 21,000 years old were considered to be the world’s oldest clearly narrative artworks. The scientists working on the latest find say that the Indonesian art pre-dates these…

The depiction of these animal–human figures, known in mythology as therianthropes, suggests that early humans in Sulawesi had the ability to conceive of things that do not exist in the natural world, say the researchers. “We don’t know what it means, but it seems to be about hunting and it seems to maybe have mythological or supernatural connotations,” says Brumm.

The oldest such example from Europe is a half-lion, half-human ivory figure from Germany that researchers have estimated to be 40,000 years old — although some suggest that it might be significantly younger. A roughly 17,000 year-old painting of a bird-headed human being charged by a bison, from Lascaux Cave, is considered to be one of the earliest depictions of a clear scene in European rock art.

Ewen Callaway, “Is this cave painting humanity’s oldest story?” at Nature

Of course, the half-human/half-animal figures could be humans dressing up as animals, perhaps for cult reasons (if you dress like a pig, maybe you can think like one and thus figure out how to catch one… ) The mythology could follow, not precede, the custom.

See also: Neanderthal art found.

Follow UD News at Twitter!

Nice find. this Stasis (intelligent humans capable of sophisticated cave art over such a long span till modern times) helps attest to YeC creation science. Just like earlier complexity than predicted under NDT Darwin doctrine assumptions followed by Stasis helps attest to ID and even YeC, For no way there would be a gap of tens of thousands, or even a few hundred, years between this and the development of script. Also The Ice Ages and these caves did not set in and exist prior to the 1656 anno mundi 'Mabul' impacts year aka flood of Noah, the cause and effect for the onset of The Ice ages. Prior to the Mabul it was still the original single continent, and no established dates the caves are over 250M years old. 44k calibrated for all the available science and context dates to about the 1948 anno-mudni birth year of Abraham about 80 into the 1657-1996 anno-mundi 340 year span of The ice ages. I suspect some coniform script/tablet/s are as old as this art. for example that relate/s to Sargon I. reference the YeC Moshe Emes series for Torah and science alignment. Pearlman

Leave a Reply