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Gathering contributions on the topic of the horse in Arabia and the place of the Arabian horse in the medieval Islamic world allows us to draw an overview of the current knowledge about the issue of the introduction of the horse to Arabia (see Robin and Antonini), of the origin of the Arabian breed (see Olsen), of the significance and contribution of Arabian rock art (see Robin and Antonini, Olsen), of the role of the horse in Rasulid diplomacy (see Mahoney) and in Mamlūk culture (see Berriah, Carayon), of the emergence of the myth of the Arabian horse in the 19th‑century Arabian Peninsula (see Pouillon), and on the specific issue of horse armour from the late pre‑Islamic period to the Ottoman empire (see Nicolle).
Until 2010, al‑Maqar [often written al‑Magar] was nothing but a dot on the map of the governorate of Tathlīth (province of ʿAsīr, Saudi Arabia).
This date is asserted after the presence of specific types of arrowheads and four fragments of bones, whose collagen was radiocarbon dated to c. Yet, the exact provenance of these organic samples is unknown, and as stated by others the relationship between the stone figures, the arrowheads and radiocarbon samples is not clear“The evidence from the 86‑centimetre‑long fragment spotted by Gublan is tantalisingly inconclusive.
The carving features a rounded head, arched neck, muzzle, nostrils, shoulder, withers and overall proportions that are clearly horse‑like.
On the head of the statue there are clear signs of a bridle which in turn confirms that inhabitant of al‑Magar domesticated horses”“Presence of horse statues of big sizes, coupled with Neolithic artefacts and tools dating back to 9,000 years ago is considered an important archaeological discovery at the international arena particularly in view that the latest studies indicated that animal domestication was known for the first time 5,500 years ago in central Asia.
This site demonstrated that horses were domesticated in Saudi Arabia before a long period of the afore‑mentioned date”“Al‑Magar site incarnated four significant Arabian cultural characteristics for which the Arabs are highly proud of.
Genetic studies have been addressing this problem, defending either the hypothesis of several original areas of domestication.The animal sculptures could be part of this occupation and some of them definitely depict equids.However neither the presence of horses in this part of Arabia nor their domestication 3,000 years earlier than expected can be proved on the basis of the sculptures on site.Horse riding really took off in the Early‑Iron‑Age Luristan.In Mesopotamia, cavalry developed after 900 BC where it progressively replaced chariotry.