One of the most scenic and popular monuments of ancient art is Suleki petroglyph which is located in the Pechishche river’s valley. The petroglyph was named after village Sulekov which was situated nearby.
The first images of human figures and faces of the ancient Gods appeared on this place more than 4,5 thousand years ago. At around the same time people carved the images of bulls and horses, running elks.
The rock paintings of the middle ages take particular interest. The Suleki petroglyph contains about 300 unique rock images of those times. These images are a kind of encyclopedia, which tells us about people’s life, family values, hunting and war.
Images of warriors also attract the interest of scientists and tourists. One of the slabs (which is kept now in the Khakas State Museum of Local Lore) contains the image of an armed horseman with a spear. His clothing consists of armor made of horizontal metal plates with leather belts. There is a conical helmet on his head that protects ears and neap.
At those times, the troops generally consisted of dismounted and horse archers – for this reason, sling with arrows is the most popular type of weapon on the Suleki petroglyph.
The most wide-spreading images on the petroglyph are animals: elks, roe deers, camels, snow leopards, rams and others. Animals are depicted in motion. It’s unusual for us to see images of camels. Nowadays in Khakassia, we can see this animal only in the zoo. However, this was not always the case. Even in the XVII century, the camel was an important animal for the local tribes. On the rock, there are images of two styles. In the first group, camels have a small head with a closed mouth, high humps, and two long legs. The second group includes camels with four legs, round humps, and open mouths with teeth. Also, we can see the scenes of the cattle-lifting and animals fighting.
Minor V.A., senior researcher of the Khakass Research Institute of Language, Literature and History