Weapons and Tools in Rock Art: A World Perspective [Hardback]

Ana M. S. Bettencourt(Editor); Manuel Santos-Estévez(Editor); Hugo Aluai Sampaio(Editor)

ISBN: 9781789254907 | Published by: Oxbow Books | Year of Publication: 2021 | 208p, H11 x W8.5, b/w and color
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Weapons and Tools in Rock Art


Weapons and tools are frequently found depicted in rock art in many parts of the globe and different periods and in varying social contexts. This collection of papers by leading rock art specialists examines the subjective and metaphorical value of weapons and tools in art, the actions that created them, and their contexts. It also takes into account that such representations incorporate and transmit some kind of understanding about the world and the relationship between objects and humans. Contributors analyse objects and weapons as status symbols, as evidences of cultural contacts, as ideological devices, etc. Divided into regional sections which, for once, do not focus on Scandinavia, chapters deal with the representations of weapons and certain kinds of tools (such as axes and sickles) in different prehistoric, protohistoric and traditional community contexts all over the world. Attention focuses on rock art, but also looks at stelae and statue-menhirs, as well as other kinds of ‘container’ or vehicle for this kind of depiction.

The major concern is to discuss the possible meanings of these embodied signs in different areas and periods, since meanings are permeable both to time and space. Papers either centre their attention in broader approaches based on a specific area, region or people, or focus on particular case studies.

Table of Contents

Approaches to engraved meanings and significances of weapons and tools in rock

art (Introduction)

Ana M. S. Bettencourt, Manuel-Santos-Estévez and Hugo Aluai Sampaio

1. Weaponry in Levantine Rock Art

Manuel Bea Martínez

2. Megaliths and weapon's representations. A view of the birth of warrior’s images

Barroso-Bermejo, R., Bueno-Ramírez, P., Balbín- Behrmann, R. de, Linares-Catela, J.A.,

Mora-Molina, C., Vera-Rodriguez, J.C

3. The procession of weapons. Ritual Landscape in Late Prehistory

Manuel Santos-Estévez

4. West Iberian Bronze Age weapons in carved places: some ideas for its ontology

Ana M. S. Bettencourt

5. Representations of warriors and weapons in Swedish Rock Art - context and


Ulf Bertilsson

6. The image of tools and the metaphor of life

Shemsi Krasniqi

7. Ancient rites as evidenced in the representation of weapons and tools in a rock art

tradition in Northern Greece

Stella Pilavaki.

8. Not what it seems: approach to Northwestern West of Iberia weapons and tools

rock art depictions and modern storytelling serving touristic and educational purposes

Hugo Aluai Sampaio

9. Horsemen’s Weaponry in Rock Art of Jebel Rat (High Atlas, Morocco). Signs of a

social elite?

Alessandra Bravin

10. The representations of weapons and objects in the rock art of Tunisia

Jaafar Ben Nasr

11. Tools and weapons in African Rock Art

Augustin Holl

12. Painted for War: rock art depictions of archers with arrow head-dresses in the

Eastern Cape, South Africa

Brent Sinclair Thomson

13. Symbolic and ritual significance of weapons in Western North American rock


David Whitley

14.Weapons and war related objects in Guachipas rock art (Salta, Argentina)

María Pía Falchi

15. The representations of rock art weapons in hunting scenes from Serra da Capivara

National Park - Northeast Brazil

Leonardo Borges; Daniela Cisneiros, Hércules Costa and Nathália Nogueira.

16. Weapons and rock art engravings, a case study of wary filiation in the Queneto

site, Viru Valley, Peru

María Susana Barrau ; Daniel S. Castillo Benítez,

17. The picturing of weapons and other objects at stenciled and painted rock art sites

Patricia Dobrez

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