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In the rock art of the Minusinsk Basin can be traced images of the same period later supplemented with new images of subsequent eras. Such cases of “co-authorship” can be found in almost all monuments of the region under consideration. The authors of the article note that numerous cases of “renewal” of rock compositions could be dated to all eras, but gained particular popularity, perhaps, in the Tagar time, when not only the early images of animals were amended by endowing them with the features of the Scythian-Siberian style, but also to the fi gures of animals themselves are actively “up-embossed” by anthropomorphic characters (the so-called “Tagar men”). The article discusses different versions of such “updated” plots: in addition to scenes of “transition”, “lord of animals / horses”, “rider leading the horses”, etc., there frequently can be seen a human fi gure shown standing or sitting on the back of an animal, usually exceeding its size, very often in a clearly aggressive posture towards animal. Most likely, such additions to the images were outcome of the extinction of the idea of the animal / beast being the king of nature, which is stronger and more powerful than man, and the demonstration of a new idea of the human “superiority” of over the animal world. There are also obvious Tashtyks’s “additions” to the Tagar’s scenes. For example, in one case, Tashtyk craftsmen added to the engraved fi gurines of the wild boars from the Tagar era engravings of hunters directing their bows at the animals. Both in the Tashtyk epoch and subsequent times, the tradition of “renewal” of the rock scenes will persist until the ethnographic time, when tribal tamgas, as well as various fi gurines of people and animals, were applied next to or on top of ancient compositions. Thus, the objects of rock art, being monuments of an open type, were actively used by visitors for many eras, and were often subjected not only to barbaric infl uences, but also to creative “upgrading” of “outdated” subjects.


Rock Art, Minusinsk Basin, the middle Yenisei, “co-author” Tagar men.

Olga S. Sovetova, Olga O. Shishkina

Kemerovo State University, Kemerovo, Russia

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