Rock Art
Newgrange: Neolithic Site in Ireland
Petroglyphs in Malta
By far the most common design in Maltese megalithic art is that of the spiral and its derivatives.

Read about the Tarxien Temple complex:
http://www.maltavoyager.com/moa/areas/tarxien.htm

Prehistoric rock art is found across the globe. These ancient images give evidence of early human creativity. They are more than just drawings: anthropologists believe that the images in rock art may hold important clues about the how our species came into being.  Studying prehistoric art can teach us about the lives of ancient peoples and the exciting moment in history when "primates" became "people."

“Thousands of prehistoric petroglyph sites are scattered throughout the southwestern U.S. on cliffs, boulders and cave walls.  During the last 16 years, Bob Preston working largely in Petrified Forest National Park, has shown convincingly that many of these sites were used as "solar calendars" to track the yearly movement of the sun across the sky through the interplay of sunlight on the petroglyph. As long as time has not altered the alignments or surfaces of the rocks involved, these solar calendars function the same today as they did when they were created almost a thousand years ago.”

Read the full article at: http://www.scienceviews.com/indian/suncalendar.html




Other Resources

Introduction to Rock Art Research
by David S. Whitley

Prehistoric Art: The Symbolic Journey of Humankind
by Randall White

A Cosmos In Stone: Interpreting Religion and Society Through Rock Art
by J. David Lewis-Williams

Rock Art Museum of South Africa
http://rockart.wits.ac.za/origins/index.php?section=1


"Ancient Altered States:
What do squiggles, dots, and spirals on rock walls mean?
Ask your local shaman—or archeologist Dave Whitley."

Read the article at DiscoverMagazine.com 
Prehistoric: Belonging to any culture that is
pre-literate; before written history

Petroglyphs: Images carved in rock

Pictogram: Images painted on rock

Prehistoric rock carvings have been found on every continent except Antarctica and wherever cultures have flourished:

  • Africa
  • Asia
  • Australia
  • Eurasia
  • North America
  • South America



North American Southwest



The triple spiral visible on the entrance stone at Newgrange. The triple spiral is a Celtic or pre-Celtic symbol found on a number of Neolithic sites.

From ancient times, the symbol of the spiral has been associated with the solar calendar, the rhythm of the seasons, and the cycle of birth, death, and rebirth.

More about Newgrange
Solar Calendars
Petroglyph, Arroyo Hondo,
New Mexico

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Prehistoric Art
For the purposes of this website, I use the term “prehistoric art” to refer both
to the art of ancient peoples who no longer exist and also to the work of indigenous peoples, such as the Maori of New Zealand and the Bushmen of South Africa, who still live in traditional tribes and create art in the same vein as their ancestors.