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Arts 2013, 2(4), 447-475; doi:10.3390/arts2040447
Rock Art of Saudi Arabia
Received: 5 September 2013; in revised form: 28 October 2013 / Accepted: 27 November 2013 / Published: 13 December 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue World Rock Art)
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Abstract: It is not only oil in which Saudi Arabia is rich, but it is also among the four richest rock art regions of the world. Hundreds and thousands of petroglyphs, painted rock art, and ancient Arabian inscriptions sites are located all over the country, representing various cultural phases, from the Neolithic until the recent past. One can see the naturalistic, schematic, abstract, mythical, and mystical images representing ancient ideology, thoughts about the metaphysical world, religious entity, economy, environment, human activities, and variety of animal types, according to particular climatic and environmental conditions. The rock art of Saudi Arabia is the mirror of its rich cultural heritage of so-called Bedouin or desert dwellers that surprises the world with its 4000 archaeological and more than 1500 rock art sites.
Keywords: Neolithic; petroglyph; painted site; heritage; ideology; environment; naturalistic; schematic; mirror of human behavior