San rock art dating dating an old flame after divorce
More than 30 samples have been dated so far and several of them are at least 5,000 years old.
Some go back 7,500 years, suggesting a painting culture that lasted for millennia.
And pictures left by the San and others could help researchers to put dates on other significant events, including the development of early religious rituals. Extracting useful samples damages paintings, and it is hard to distinguish original materials from modern contaminants.
Over the years, compounds that contain carbon build up on top of the pictures and interfere with radiocarbon dating.
“What we’ve been doing previously existed out of time,” says Pearce.
“If we are able to date depictions of livestock and material goods associated with incoming groups, we may be able to start unravelling the nature of interactions between groups in this early contact,” says David Pearce, an archaeologist and director of the Rock Art Institute at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, and a co-author of the latest study.
But the tales did not faze the late Clement Meighan, an anthropologist from the University of California at Los Angeles who in 1962 radiocarbon-dated a wooden peg recovered from one of the rock art sites as approximately 550 years old, which he used as an indicator to date the paintings to the time of the Cochimi.