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Réflexion sur l'identité des guerriers représentés dans les gravures rupestres de l'Adrar des Iforas et de l'Aïr

Abstract : Approximately one thousand engravings of warriors have so far been recorded in the Adrar des Iforas and the Aïr regions. By analysing the context in which they were created, their clothes, accessories, head gear and weapons, and by studying the superpositions occurring in some engravings, it is possible to detect the emergence of two distinct stages of rock art in the southern Sahara. The oldest stage is linked to a pastoral economy founded on cattle-rearing, at a time when metal was known in the southern Sahara, and the use of the spear was preferred to the older tradition of the bow and bent objects. People in possession of chariots and horses were occupying the central Saharan regions at that time, and there were contacts and exchanges with the cattle-rearing people of the Aïr and Adrar des lforas. The fact that the latter were pastoral nomads gives an explanation of the widespread distribution of their rock, engravings. Amongst the different hypotheses considered, the assimilation of the people represented to the ancestors of the Peuls (or at least to some of them) is the one which best seems to concur with current archaeological, paleo-ecological and ethnological knowledge. The following stage has no thematical connection, and uses the rock support differently. It marks the settlement in the southern Sahara, from the 5th Century A.D., of an aristocratic society of horse and dromedary rearers originating from the northern Sahara, and from whom the Tuaregs descend.
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Christian Dupuy. Réflexion sur l'identité des guerriers représentés dans les gravures rupestres de l'Adrar des Iforas et de l'Aïr. Sahara : preistoria e storia del Sahara prehistory and history of the Sahara préhistoire et histoire du Sahara, Segrate : Pyramids, 1998, 10, pp.31-54. ⟨halshs-02529925⟩



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