Around the time Sir Richard Owen had coined the term “dinosaur” to describe the giant “terrible lizards” whose bones were then being discovered in the mid-1800′s the Dogon tribe was creating art which appears to represent one of them riding one of those creatures.
Features of the “dinosaur” are accurate enough for a species identification to be made. An Ornithopod dinosaur, in our humble opinion.
The birdlike head with “duck bill”; and the knees appearing to bend in the “wrong” direction (opposite ours) separate this dinosaur from the sauropods.
In actuality the front legs do bend in the opposite direction, but it the high ankles of these creatures which make it appear that the rear legs also bend in the forward direction.
Examples of the Ornithopod dinosaur depicted include; iguanadon and hadrosaurus as shown below. Note also the accuracy of this African depiction compared to early “scientific” depictions.
It’s interesting to note that the gallery showing this piece claims that this is dinosaur, from the mid-1800′s and that they can authenticate its age and origin. If you’ve got a spare $1,200, pick it up and send us a photo of the other side of the piece.