New archaeological research in Saudi Arabia documents hundreds of stone structures interpreted as monumental sites where early pastoralists carried out rituals. In a new study published in The Holocene
, researchers from the Max Planck Society in Jena together with Saudi and international collaborators, present the first detailed study of ‘mustatil’ stone structures in the Arabian Desert. These are vast structures made of stone piled into rectangles, which are some of the oldest large-scale structures in the world. They give insights into how early pastoralists survived in the challenging landscapes of semi-arid Arabia.