Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Edakkal Caves (Neolithic Age)

Last weekend we had been to a lovely place called Wayanad, 4000 feet above sea level, in the state of Kerala, which has traces and testimonies of tribes who lived in caves.

During the British rule, Fred Fawcett a senior police officer and a pre-history enthusiast happened to see a Neolithic stone axe from a nearby coffee estate. Being an enthusiast and nature lover he started exploring the nearby forest and with the help of local tribes, discovered this cave in 1890.

With like minded scholar friends, he found out these are pre-historic carvings by Neolithic people carved with Neolithic Celts. This was a monumental discovery as these are the first samples of drawings on rock with rock tools, founded in India

The caves have at least three different types of petroglyphs, which means the cave carvings are of different periods and the oldest are said to be 8000 years old! The carvings consists of human figures, animals, circle shaped wheel like structures and various other complex drawings.

This is the boulder which makes the roof..
This is not a cave as such, but a naturally formed break up between two rocks 96ft long and 22 ft wide and a very big rock has fallen and jammed between the walls on top to make a natural formation like a roof. As per the geologists and archeologists, this happened due to natural forces like earthquake or landslip about 30,000 years ago.

The figure of a male with arms and head gear

These carvings are so rare and founded only in a very few places in India and Edakkal drawings are thus important not just because of its quality but also for its complex depiction of carvings.

A wheel is seen right there on top and a few other complex diagrams

These are Tamil Brahmi script on the wall

These carving with stone tools are said to be cavemen's way of communication or expressions of their Vision and Dreams in the absence of languages

As per scientists and archeologists, these Stone Age carvings and pictorial writings clearly state the presence of a pre-historic culture in this part of the world.

And yes..never ever miss this cave if you visit Kerala.. ;-)

Note: In spite of being in Global heritage list and hence getting enough funds to preserve, the local authorities are slightly slack in maintaining the premises. Though plastic is banned, one can see all these wastes in many places. At the same time, there is no point in blaming the authorities when senseless travelers (mostly local travelers) extensively carry and use plastic and carelessly dump the waste all around. Implementing a stringent law and a complete ban of plastic and food is the only option to safeguard the sacred cave and its premise.


Anonymous said...

Authorities And Travelers both to be blamed if plastic is seen on such places. If rules are stringent And implementation is there nobody dares to do such mistakes. Anyways, useful information. Thanks for sharing.

Haddock said...

Must visit this place.
Had been to Kerala so many times and have yet to visit Wayanad.

Ms Sparrow said...

Wow, that cave is a remarkable place! It must bring lots of tourists to your area. Thanks for sharing your pictures.

lakshmi said...

the pictures are real good...and it sure is a must visit place....
your narrative is very interesting

Sonia said...

Wow, your narratives make this place a must-visit for me..Will surely check this one out..Thanks for posting!
Thank you for visiting my log and for the sweet comment!

Greener Bangalore said...

@Hobo yes you are right Hobo....both travelers and authorities should have a social obligation to make that happen...

@Haddock you should visit Haddock! of course a must see destination

@Ms Sparrow..a lot of tourists! and Kerala is one of the most sought out tourist destinations in India Ms Sparrow

@Lakshmi yes Lakshmi its a must visit place and Thanks

@Sonia hi Welcome back and you should visit once....

Thank you all for your lovely comments......and keep visiting....

Rajesh said...

This is a must visit place for me. The diagrams in the cave are amazing.

Greener Bangalore said...

Thanks Rajesh! yes you should visit

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