Rock art of the Wadi al-Ajal, Libya

  • Tertia Barnett (Creator)



The dataset contains information about 2450 engraved rock surfaces in the Wadi al-Ajal, Fezzan, Libya, located and recorded between 2004 and 2009 by the Wadi al-Ajal Rock Art Project directed by Dr Tertia Barnett and funded by The Society for Libyan Studies and The British Academy. The majority of the engravings are new discoveries, and include figurative and abstract images, inscriptions, and a range of functional and non-functional rock markings. They span a period of around 8000 years, from at least 6000 BC to recent times - a period during which the cultural and natural landscapes of the Sahara were transformed. The engravings are important for understanding prehistoric and protohistoric human activity in the Sahara, and adaptation to changing climatic and environmental conditions. The data have been published in Barnett T (2019) An Engraved Landscape: rock carvings in the Wadi al-Ajal (Volume 1: Synthesis; Volume 2: Gazetteer). London: The Society for Libyan Studies.
The dataset includes (a) a spreadsheet with grid references, detailed descriptions and quantitative information on content and context of every engraved rock surface, (b) photographs of the engravings and their contexts, (c) digital line drawings of a selection of the engravings, and (d) 3D material for a selection of the rock surfaces.

Data Citation

Barnett, Tertia. (2019). Rock art of the Wadi al-Ajal, Libya, [dataset]. Society for Libyan Studies and University of Edinburgh. School of History, Classics & Archaeology.
Date made available20 Aug 2019
PublisherEdinburgh DataShare
Geographical coverageSahara, LIBYAN ARAB JAMAHIRIYA, Fezzan, Wadi al-Ajal, Libya

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