Take a look at these 9,000-year-old facial carvings discovered in Jordan

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Humans have been making art for centuries. According to an article published by Atlantic, one of the oldest human works of art, which features red hatched lines on a rock, is over 73,000 years old. Earlier this week, the portfolio of ancient works of art received new additions, considered an important archaeological discovery.

On Tuesday, a team of Jordanian and French archaeologists announced the discovery of 9,000-year-old stone carvings in the desert of southeastern Jordan. The carvings are believed to be a ritual installation used to hunt gazelles during the Neolithic period. According to CNNthe gigantic stone traps are known as “desert kites”, and researchers claim they are the oldest large-scale human sculptures in the world.

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The two stone carvings, which researchers also call hunting traps, were named Ghassan and Abu Ghassan. One, which stands nearly 4 feet tall, features detail of the human figure, while the other smaller sculpture, at 2 feet tall, features a detailed human face.

Other finds at the site include a carefully curated collection of some 150 marine fossils, a hearth, a ritual altar stone and animal figurines.

The South East Badia Archaeological Project (SEBAP) Recount CNN that the discovery sheds new light on the symbolism, artistic expression and spiritual culture of Neolithic peoples who specialized in hunting gazelles using “desert kites”. They also added that “the sacred symbolism and ritual performance highlighted was most likely devoted to invoking supernatural forces for successful hunts and abundance of prey to capture”.

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Janae Price is an editor at Thrillist. She’s originally from New York and loves all things cheese, K-pop, and culture. Follow her on Instagram and Twitter @janae_larie.

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