Forma, Vol. 21 (No. 3), pp. 243-258, 2006
Original Paper

Shape Analysis of Petroglyphs in Central Asia

Ryuji Takaki1*, Junichiro Toriwaki2, Shinji Mizuno3, Ritsuko Izuhara4, Muhiddin Khudjanazarov 5 and Marina Reutova5

1Kobe Design University, Nishi-ku, Kobe, Hyogo 651-2196, Japan
2Chukyo University, Toyota, Aichi 470-0393, Japan
3Toyohashi University of Technology, Toyohashi, Aichi 441-8580, Japan
4Kanazawa University of Technology, Nonoichi, Ishikawa 921-8501, Japan
5Institute of Archaeology, Academy of Sciences, Samarkand, 703051, Uzbekistan
*E-mail address:

(Received November 8, 2006; Accepted December 5, 2006)

Keywords: Petroglyph, Central Asia, Image Analysis, Skeleton, Right-Left Orientation

Abstract. New methods to characterize shapes of the petroglyphs in Central Asia and properties of their groups are proposed, and results by the use of these methods are presented. Shapes of petroglyphs were treated by image analysis to obtain simplified shapes called "skeleton". Structures of skeletons are expressed by the use of some symbols, from which quantitative comparison among petroglyphs is shown to be possible. Properties of groups of petroglyphs, i.e. those drawn on the same rock, are expressed by statistics of simple quantities, such as the numbers of animals and men, the numbers of animal species and the ratio of the right-oriented to the left-oriented animals (or men). Some discussion is made on the meanings of these quantities and a possibility of future development of this kind of studies.

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