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Anthropologists have discovered cave paintings near Chichen Itza believed to predate the Maya civilization by more than 5,000 years.
There are depictions of human figures praying (arms extended upward and squatting), men hunting with spears in hand, animals and birds, and impressions of hands in positive and negative, he said. The style indicates they are of great antiquity, pre-dating the Maya civilization which flourished in this region from around the time of Christ to about 1500.
...they found some 60 paintings of man-like figures at the Kab cavern situated near the famous Chichen Itza archaeological site. There are also drawings of animal figures, birds or canines... the cave 'shows the existence of symbolic thinking in Mesoamerica, when the human groups were still hunters and gatherers', something that he said was of 'extraordinary importance'.
The term 'petroglyph' should not be confused with pictograph, which is an image drawn or painted on a rock face, both of which contribute to the wider and more general category of rock art...
The oldest petroglyphs are dated to approximately the Neolithic and late Upper Paleolithic boundary, about 10,000 to 12,000 years ago. Around 7,000 to 9,000 years ago, other writing systems such as pictographs and ideograms began to appear... Petroglyphs have been found in all parts of the globe except Antarctica with highest concentrations in parts of Africa, Scandinavia, Siberia, sw N America and Australia.
Originally posted by masqua
Going by the art alone, there are startling similarities with examples of the most primitive cave paintings in the world.
A quick comparison here
Nice find, anhinga. These representations are what drives me as an artist.
[edit on 2/12/07 by masqua]