Rock Art in Hail Region… An Album of the Saudi History

Rock Art at Shuwaymis in Hail Region tell historians so much about life in the Middle East going back thousands of years to the Neolithic period.
Rock Art at Shuwaymis in Hail Region tell historians so much about life in the Middle East going back thousands of years to the Neolithic period.

The history of the Hail region inSaudi Arabia has many important sites and events that have been recorded in theArab register. The region dates back to several centuries BC, where many Arabtribes settled over the centuries for its strategic location in the middle ofthe Arabian Peninsula, and Hail became one of the richest regions in theKingdom. It has been visited by many travelers and orientalists throughout theages to explore the treasures of the archaeological regions that vary fromplace to place.

  • The incredible petroglyphs of the Hail regionin Saudi Arabia is as close as possible to an album that have recordedthe Saudi History

This region includes two outstanding mountains located in a desert landscape: Jabel Umm Sinman at Jabbah and Jabal al-Manjor and Raat at Shuwaymis. The petroglyphs sites in the city of Jabbah in Hail entered the World Heritage Sites of the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) to be the fourth heritage site of the Kingdom to be added in the World Heritage List, as these drawings are considered among the rare monuments depicting the daily life of man in prehistoric times.

Jebel Umm Sanman, in Jabbah Hail, dates back to 7000 BCE

Theancient city of Jabbah, located in the North-West of the city of Hail, about 100kilometers in the desert of Nafud, the land of an ancient lake that oncesituated at the foot of the Umm Sinman hill region that has now disappeared afterbeing a source of fresh water for people and animals for long years. Thedifferent petroglyphs and inscriptions of human and animal figures tell thestories of the ancestors along almost 10,000 years of history.

Thisis why Jabbah is considered one of the largest andmost important sites of inscriptions and rock paintings in the Kingdom, an artmuseum of ancient peoples' museums, and a desert heritage tourist destinationin the region. It includes the oldest sites dating back to the Stone Age, wherevisitors can see scenes of daily life of man in the stone ages thousands ofyears ago.

Theancient city has an enormous amount of drawings and engravings that werepainted and engraved in different ages on the facades of the mountain rockssurrounding this village. These drawings and engravings are characterized byhandling varied artistic themes, adding to the stone tools used by the ancientman in digging his rich drawings, engravings, and petroglyphs.

Themost important of these drawings and carvings is located in Mount Umm Senman,West of the city. Being stable in the ground, they represent the early patternof drilling and engraving. Itincludes many Thamudi inscriptions and drawings dating back more thanseven thousand years BC and others dating to the Stone Age. This mountain is a landmarkin the region, so many books talked about it.

MountUmm Senman attracts tourists and those interested in archeology from inside andoutside the Kingdom to view the inscriptions, which are estimated at 5431 Thamudiinscriptions and 194 drawings of different animals, including 1378 drawings ofcamels in different sizes and forms. The number of human drawings reached 262drawings.

Thisimpressive number of drawings,inscriptions, and petroglyphs refers that this region'sresidents possessed many elements of civilization, which is the same in MountGhouta, where there are drawings and inscriptions rich in scenes of daily lifeof the human being and animals that settled in the region.

Also significant is the fact that this region with itsinscriptions, drawings, and petroglyphs cover three different historic periods—The first period dates back to theseventh millennium BC, the second period is of the Thamudi era dates from 1500to 2500 BC, and its most prominent drawings and rock inscriptions confirm thehuman habitation of camels, and the Arab period is the third of these periods.Some studies indicate the discovery of a fourth period dating back to the Islamictimes, represented by the writings of the Kufic writings on some stones fallingfrom Mount Senman, which in its entirety are verses of Quran and Islamicsupplications; one of them dated in the month of Rajab 147 AH.

These paintingsare illustrations of human history, activity and his adaptation to theenvironment and its cultural level in the Neolithic period, in light of thepaucity of information about men before history.

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