At the site of Jebel Qurma in Jordan’s Black Desert archaeologists discovered thousands of inscriptions and petroglyphs dating back around 2000 years.
The Jebel Qurma area, and the Black Desert is nowadays a highly inhospitable area due to very very arid climate and difficulties in crossing. Archaeologists from Leiden University in the Netherlands leading the Jebel Qurma Archaeological Landscape Project, discovered inscriptions are written in Safaitic and petroglyphs suggesting that people intensively used the area around 2000 years ago.
The rock art shows images of lions, gazelles, horses and large birds that may be ostriches. According to the experts the inscriptions found near these petroglyphs tend to be very short as most of the texts are simply names, like “so-and-so, the son of so-and-so“. Some texts contain information on what people were doing, with a few hinting that the inhabitants of Jebel Qurma had conflicts with the nearby Nabataeans.
Specialists are analysing the texts and petroglyphs to gain a better understanding of what they mean and why they were created. In addition, the researchers discovered remains of camps, shelters and tombs. Other discoveries include masses of charcoal from the third century AD, which appeared to represent several species of trees, which needed water year-round.
(after Live Science & Peter Akkermans)