02 December 2012

UNESCO World Heritage Sites - Twyfelfontein



Namibia issued this Souvenir Sheet with NVI stamps of Standard Mail Rate in 2008 to commemorate the first anniversary of the inclusion of ‘Twyfelfontein or /Ui-//aes’ in the World Heritage list of UNESCO.

Twyfelfontein or /Ui-//aes (Namibia)

Twyfelfontein (uncertain spring), officially known as /Ui-//aes (jumping waterhole), is a site of ancient rock engravings in the Kunene Region of north-western Namibia. It consists of a spring in a valley flanked by the slopes of a sandstone table mountain that receives very little rainfall and has a wide range of diurnal temperatures.

The site has been inhabited first by hunter-gatherers and later by Khoikhoi herders. Both ethnic groups used it as a place of worship and a site to conduct shamanist rituals. In the process of these rituals at least 2,500 items of rock carvings have been created, as well as a few rock paintings. Displaying one of the largest concentrations of rock petroglyphs in Africa, UNESCO approved Twyfelfontein as Namibia's first World Heritage Site in 2007.

Twyfelfontein or /Ui-//aes has one of the largest concentrations of rock engravings in Africa. Most of these well-preserved engravings represent rhinoceros, elephant, ostrich and giraffe, as well as drawings of human and animal footprints. The site also includes six painted rock shelters with motifs of human figures in red ochre. The objects excavated from two sections, date from the Late Stone Age.

The rock art forms a coherent, extensive and high-quality record of ritual practices relating to hunter-gatherer communities in this part of southern Africa over at least 2,000 years, and eloquently illustrates the links between the ritual and economic practices of hunter-gatherers.

- Pradeep Kumaaar Mallik - email : mallikphila@gmail.com

No comments:

Related Posts with Thumbnails