Places ofPeace and PowerPeace and Power

Ha Baroana Cave Paintings

Ha Baroana cave painting
Ha Baroana cave painting (Enlarge)

Approximately 42 kilometers to the east of Maseru, the capital of Lesotho, near the small village of Nazareth, on a hillside rock shelter facing the Liphiring River are located the rock paintings of Ha Baroana. Meaning Home of the Bushmen, the site features paintings of leopards, lions, elands, blue cranes and guinea fowls, as well as scenes of bushman life - hunting, dancing, and people in huts. It has been estimated that the paintings were made about 2000 years ago.

Ha Baroana cave painting
Ha Baroana cave painting (Enlarge)


Ha Baroana cave painting
Ha Baroana cave painting (Enlarge)


Ha Baroana cave painting site
Ha Baroana cave painting site (Enlarge)

Author's note: It is inaccurate and misleading to describe and label the rock paintings and etchings in caves strewn across the vast region of southern Africa as 'rock art' for two reasons. One, while the paintings and etchings were often done with varying degrees of artistic ability, their purpose was not artistic but rather shamanic, ceremonial and therapeutic. Two, while the paintings and etchings did indeed have various shamanic, ceremonial and therapeutic functions, they are better understood to be markers of specific geographic places of power, spirit and energy. That is what is most important; whatever the (supposed) meaning of the paintings and etchings, their geographic locations are primary while the human artifacts are secondary.





Ha Baroana Cave Paintings