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The Rock Art of Namibia
Shirley-Ann Pager
SARARA, Southern African Rock Art Research Association, Namibia.

Brandberg, Namibia, Africa
Hungarob Gorge
Petroglyphs with ostrich

Photo: Dario Seglie, CeSMAP

It is not more than 150 years since the first Europeans penetrated the interior of Namibia and literacy was introduced, therefore there are no written records of encounters with indigenous peoples beforethat time.

The African population of Namibia today is probably made up of the ancestors of the people who were here 150 years ago and any earlier people who may have been here have come and gone unrecorded.

The archaeological history of the country reveals that Namibia has been inhabited since
the earliest times, initially by pre-humans. From the Early Stone Age, 1/2 - 2 million years ago, through to the very end of the Later Stone Age, which had continued in some remote regions of Namibia up to histroic times, as well as the Iron Age, people have left traces of their occupation.
The rock art of Namibia is old, the latest paintings being executed perhaps some 2 000 years ago.

That the tradition of rock art began in the in the very Early Stone Age was shown when a painted slab was excavated at the Apollo 11 Cave in the south of Namibia in 1969.

The carbon-bearing material excavated from the same layer was dated to 26 000 years, thus at the same time dating the painted slab.

Brandberg, Namibia, Africa
Grosse Dom Schlucht
Petroglyphs with zebra
Photo: Dario Seglie, CeSMAP

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