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6,000 year old rhino

blending into the landscape

Cave Paintings


TWYFELFONTEIN          As one of the most extensive galleries of prehistoric rock art in Africa, Twyfelfontein was very high on my list of places to see in Namibia.   I was guided up the mountain to see the Bushman stone carvings from 6000 years ago.  The guide explained that the 3000 carvings were carved with quartz hammered into the sandstone. 

The Bushmen, or San people, depicted all the animals of the area - especially the giraffe that was holy to them.  It was sacred and represented water since it could reach to the heavens for water.  In addition, there were zebra, rhinos, lizards, oryx, cheetahs, elephants and even seal lions, penguins, and flamingos.

Out of all the carvings in Twyfelfontein, there was only one discovered depiction of a human.  (I offered to make an authentic second one but was politely dismissed.)  There were only a few rock paintings, which dated between 2,000 and 3,000 years old.  Unlike the carvings, there were several people depicted in them.

Copyright 2000 by Phillip Martin All rights reserved.