From the Turkish Daily News:
Horse figures painted on rock formations in EskiÅŸehir are the oldest in Anatolia, according to new archaeological research.
The research revealed that the first known horse figures date back to 6,000 B.C. and that the area was settled in the early Neolithic period. The excavation and studies of Anatolia in EskiÅŸehir’s Sivrihisar district were conducted jointly by EskiÅŸehir-based Anadolu University and the EskiÅŸehir Archaeology Museum. The EskiÅŸehir province lies directly to the west of Ankara.Ali Umut TÃ¼rkcan of Anadolu University said rock paintings featuring horse figures were found by two amateur photographers in 2002, adding, “The rock paintings were interesting because they contained 20 horse figures and a figure resembling a human showing his hands before the horses.”
TÃ¼rkcan said the figures were later made clear using the computer program Photoshop and that it was the first time this technique was applied for such work.
“The rock paintings are really significant because they are the first horse figures found in Anatolia. Horse figures have an important place for this region, which used to be an area where horses were raised. In addition to the rock paintings with horse figures, early Neolithic period ceramics and flints were discovered in the region, suggesting that the area was also used for settlement,” he noted.
What’s even more interesting is that the painting might not be of a man hunting horses, but herding them. Yeah, that’s completely wild speculation on my part. A popular theory now is that horses were domesticated in the area of Ukraine 4,000 BC. This art is edging towards the period where horses are no longer just meat, but viewed as a work animal. I wonder…
I’d upload the photo, but the site is being cranky tonight.