Along the sloping walls of the Black Dragon Canyon in Utah, there’s a curious rock painting that looks remarkably like a flying dinosaur. Creationists say it’s proof that humans and pterodactyls once coexisted. But now, in a paper published in the journal Antiquity, archaeologists have revealed that the “dinosaur” is actually a time-worn depiction of humans, a snake and some sheep.
“What was supposed to be one wing of this pterodactyl is actually two little four-legged animals,” Paul Bahn, a freelance archaeologist and coauthor of the paper, told Live Science. “The so-called head and beak and neck of the pterodactyl [are] actually a human figure, with its spindly legs and its two arms stretching out.”Honestly, I had not heard this claim, but as there are thousands of little young earth creationism claims out there, that is not surprising. How was this claim refuted? From the abstract:
A new study using portable X-ray fluorescence refutes this ill-founded interpretation and reveals a scene characteristic of Barrier Canyon style, featuring an anthropomorphic figure. By removing interpretational bias, the new technology finally lays to rest the Black Dragon Canyon pterosaur.As the Rock Man says: “You hear what you want to hear, and you see what you want to see.”