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First pre-historic hand stencils found in Qinghai-Tibet plateau
update:February 11,2020
Feb.11, 2020 -- The first pre-historic hand stencils were found in Qinghai-Tibet plateau recently in Gangcha County, Haibei Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, northwest China’s Qinghai province.The discovery bears significance for the research of prehistoric Qinghai-Tibet plateau rock paintings.
Handprinted rock painting is the oldest art form of rock art. According to the Archaeological Institute of Qinghai,the stencils may be made in prehistory in light of the painting techniques and patterns. The pigments are various shades of red with iron. Mercury and sulphur are not detected through component test, which rules out the possibility that the pigment is cinnabar. It should be iron oxide minerals.
The patterns are mainly handprints by inkjet of red pigment. Experts have identified that all the handprints are from adults including four left handprints and four right handprints. The rest cannot be identified.
Qinghai-Tibet plateau rock paintings feature animal patterns, especially yak, deer and eagle with local characteristics.The discovery fills the blank of handprinted rock paintings in the Qinghai-Tibet plateau.

By: Zhou Tianyu
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