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Giant penis carved into a rock face is discovered deep in the Australian outback

Giant penis carved into rock face discovered deep in the Australian outback — and it could be 5,000 years old

  • A large penis carving at a 5,000-year-old indigenous art site is not vandalism
  • The engraving represents Wattanuri in the ancient story of the Seven Sisters
  • The artwork in the shelter is the first to tell the Dreaming story from start to finish
  • Archaeologists believe it was used as a place of learning less than 100 years ago

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A giant engraved penis discovered in a site of native rock art is not vandalism, but part of an ancient Dreaming story.

The art is estimated to be 5,000 years old to just under 100.

Archaeologists from Griffith University and Iningai Traditional Owners teamed up to catalog the artwork in a 160-metre rock shelter known as Marra Wonga, near Barcaldine, about 70 miles east of Longreach in the Queensland outback.

The hideout is filled with over 15,000 petroglyphs, with much of the artwork focused on telling the story of the ‘Seven Sisters’ from start to finish.

A large carving of a penis following boomerangs at an indigenous rock art site near Barcaldine, Central Queensland, is part of a 5,000-year-old Dreaming learning site (pictured, the penis, representing Wattanuri, chasing the sisters in the Seven sisters story )

A large carving of a penis following boomerangs at an indigenous rock art site near Barcaldine, Central Queensland, is part of a 5,000-year-old Dreaming learning site (pictured, the penis, representing Wattanuri, chasing the sisters in the Seven sisters story )

The site is believed to have been used as a teaching space (shown, Native researcher Suzanne Thompson for a depiction of a rainbow snake)

The site is believed to have been used as a teaching space (shown, Native researcher Suzanne Thompson for a depiction of a rainbow snake)

The site is believed to have been used as a teaching space (shown, Native researcher Suzanne Thompson for a depiction of a rainbow snake)

The story is told around the world and is often related to the Pleiades star cluster.

The penis carving is part of the Seven Sisters story, which represents Wattanuri.

“In the story, the sisters are haunted by a powerful ancestral creature known as Wattanuri, who is often associated with the Orion constellation,” Griffith University Professor Paul Tacon told. Sydney Morning Herald.

Other carvings, such as six-toed feet, show the site was used to tell Dreaming stories (shown, feet with varying number of toes, up to 11)

Other carvings, such as six-toed feet, show the site was used to tell Dreaming stories (shown, feet with varying number of toes, up to 11)

Other carvings, such as six-toed feet, show the site was used to tell Dreaming stories (shown, feet with varying number of toes, up to 11)

“At some point he goes underground and emerges as a giant penis and throws boomerangs at the sisters, which we see very clearly illustrated in that panel.”

Mr Talcon said that Marra Wonga, which means ‘place of many stories’, is an extremely unique place and could have been used as a teaching space.

‘There is no other site in Australia with art like this that tells the story from one end of the shelter to the other,’ said Prof Tacon.

The site is the first in Australia to tell a story from beginning to end (pictured, star designs representing the Seven Sisters)

The site is the first in Australia to tell a story from beginning to end (pictured, star designs representing the Seven Sisters)

The site is the first in Australia to tell a story from beginning to end (pictured, star designs representing the Seven Sisters)

Other works of art in the cave, such as six-six feet, show that the cave was used to tell Dreaming stories.

Some of the carvings in the cave are about 5000 years old.

Yambangku Aboriginal Culture Heritage and Tourism Development Director Suzanne Thompson of Aboriginal Corporation initially called for the site to be documented in 2019, but the Covid pandemic prevented archaeologists from traveling to the site.

The rock shelter is located in Turraburra station, about 130 km north of Barcaldine, and is operated by the Aboriginal Corporation for Aboriginal Cultural Heritage and Tourism Development Yambangku.

The unique location is in Turraburra station, about 130km north of Barcaldine in Central Queensland (photo, the outline of two boomerangs)

The unique location is in Turraburra station, about 130km north of Barcaldine in Central Queensland (photo, the outline of two boomerangs)

The unique location is in Turraburra station, about 130km north of Barcaldine in Central Queensland (photo, the outline of two boomerangs)

THE SEVEN SISTERS

The Star Dreaming story of the Seven Sisters is one of the most widely circulated ancient stories among Aboriginal Australia. The songline for this story spans more than half the width of the continent, from deep in the Central Desert to the west coast. The songline travels through many different language groups and different parts of the story are recognized in different parts of the country.

In the Seven Sisters story in Aboriginal Australia, the group of stars are Napaljarri sisters from one skin group. In the Warlpiri story of this Jukurrpa, the sisters are often depicted with the Jampijinpa man Wardilyka, who is in love with the women. Then the morning star, Jukurra-jukurra, who is a Jakamarra man and also in love with the seven Napaljarri sisters, is shown chasing them across the night sky. They run away, fleeing from the man who wants to take one of the sisters as his wife. However, according to traditional law, the man chasing the sisters is the wrong skin group and it is forbidden to take a Napaljarri woman.

So the Seven Sisters run away from the Jampijinpa man, they travel across the land and from a steep hill they launch themselves into the air in an attempt to escape. But the Jakamarra Man follows the sisters into the sky, traveling in the shape of a star seen in the Orion’s Belt star cluster, which is also seen as the base of the Big Dipper. So every night the Seven Sisters launch themselves from Earth into the night sky, and every night the Jampijinpa man follows them through the sky.

Source: Aboriginal art of Japingka

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