13 historical monuments, mysteries of which are still unsolved
The people who lived thousands of years before us sometimes created amazing historical monuments. So massive that scientists have been racking their brains for centuries over who and why did it and, most importantly, how they were built. And they express a variety of theories, up to supernatural and mystical.
We in BTLmag.com also wanted to touch the centuries-old mysteries and made a list of places that attract by their beauty, antique charm and riddles.
According to Historia Regum Britanniae (“History of the Kings of Britain”) by ancient cleric Geoffrey of Monmouth, this complex was constructed by the wizard Merlin. In fact, Stonehenge showed up long before the hypothetical lifetime of the King Arthur’s cleric. But how did people transport the unliftable blocks from the quarry that was found in the hundreds of kilometers? The purpose of the construction is not clear: whether it was an observatory (the location of megaliths is an accurate model of the solar system), or the sanctuary (it was used for this purpose by the Celtic priests — druids).
A temple ensemble in the ancient style, which once was a flourishing and beautiful city. But the Romans did not possess the technology to install stone blocks weighing up to 1000 tons (these are the base of the structure). For comparison: Parthenon in Athens is half the size of the Lebanese giant, and the largest block of the Great Pyramid of Giza weighs only 90 tons. The credit for creating the foundation is attributed to the Egyptians and even to the giants. And some people think it might have been the foundation of the Tower of Babel.
Although road builders accidentally stumbled upon this monument in the 17th century, its research began almost three centuries later. During the excavations archaeologists stumbled upon the burial mound: perfectly round, with an impressive diameter and older than the Egyptian pyramids. In Archaeologists found the tomb in the centre. While staying there during the days of solstice, you can observe a true astronomical phenomenon – a stream of sun gradually covers the inner chamber and reveals the carvings inside. The Irish superstitions say this place is the entrance to the country of elves and fairies.
Dolmens of North Caucasus, Russia
These houses made of flat stones are scattered on slopes of the mountains. They have a distinctive hole on their facades. It is surprising that the weight of the stones is calculated in tons, but they are matched so precisely that it is impossible to squeeze a knife blade between them. At the same time, the age of the artefacts reaches up to 5 thousand years. It is interesting that dolmens can be found in various places on the Earth.
One of the largest Mayan settlements hidden in the green jungle. There are artificial ponds, and a field for ballgames, as well as palaces. But special attention is paid to the pyramids that form the squares of this ancient city. They were built according to time patterns, corresponding to the development periods. There are many theories about their functions: religious buildings, research centers, cemeteries, or both. The etymology of the name “Tikal” is unclear. But there is a more understandable nickname – the place of the voices. Because even a whisper turns into a loud echo.
Stone labyrinths of Bolshoi Zayatsky Island, Russia
Solovetsky Islands in Arkhangelsk Oblast, Russia are decorated by fantastic stone lace – spiral-shaped labyrinths. The locals call them “vavilons” (Babylons in the local dialect). A single place serves as both entrance and exit, meaning is your go strictly by lines, formed by boulders, after some time you can exit from the same spot you entered. But what was it before? Some scientists write about practicality: fish traps. Others think it was for entertainment: places for round dance and games. But the majority believes that these are ceremonial structures on the border with the otherworldly world.
The monumental structure at an altitude of 900 meters above sea level hid directly in the rocks. Masters had to show remarkable patience, carving the beauty of Petra. So, in the end of the canyon you will face a fascinating view on the front columns of Al Khazneh (The Treasury) at Petra. Perhaps the temple, perhaps the mausoleum. It is really hard to understand how did the carvers work. After all, it is almost impossible to complete this task without scaffolds, which could not appear here for any reason.
Stone spheres, Costa Rica
Prehistoric petrospheres from the Pacific coast almost became victims of vandalism: the workers, who found them, believed that there was gold hidden inside. Anyway, the artifacts were still affected: they were installed on city squares to attract tourists. Precise dating is impossible due to constant movement. The theory of their origin under the influence of water proved to be untenable. And what is it anyway: the symbols of planets, boundary marking? Assumptions without evidence.
Terracotta Army, China
The Mausoleum of Qin Shi Huang stores more than 8 000 statues of Chinese warriors and horses. They were buried together with the ruler, which was a break from the tradition — instead of humans and animals. Man-made army from 200 BC was made in full size, with the tiniest details, no duplicate faces. Archaeologists have to act very carefully during excavations, which last from the 1970s. This is for security purposes due to the ancient legend: the deceased Emperor had to be accompanied by rivers of mercury.
Angkor Wat, Cambodia
Europeans didn’t know about the complex until the 19th century. And after discovering the complex, they doubdted that such building had been built by the Khmers. The masonry is very dense: sometimes you will hardly ever find any joints. The rocks are extremely smooth. The whole construction stays in place thanks to its own weight. The ensemble of 200 temples has been planned so that by approaching from any side a traveler only sees three of them. The view is particularly stunning in the rainy season: a wide ditch filled with water makes Angkor Wat look similar to an island in the middle of the illimitable ocean.
This name is generally interpreted by Europeans as well of Buktu. It was the protagonist of medieval tales: it was believed that the streets of this place were made of gold and only wise people lived here.. The brave men, who attempted to conquer the African Eldorado did not return until the french explorer René Caillié pretended to be a pilgrim. Imagine his surprise when he saw the poor little town consisting of wattle-and-daub buildings. So now, the adventure-lovers are attracted only by a unique architecture of the mosques.
Statues of Easter island, Chile
A small piece of land in the waters of the Pacific ocean dotted with giant Moai. There is evidence that they were moved from place to place and turned. There are also ritual plates, which are several times heavier than the idols themselves. Unfortunately, the people who could now shed some light, have long been killed by slavers. The path to unlocking the secrets of the island is to speak directly to the silent statues. But the experiments confirm only the fact that Moai could be used for a variety of purposes.
The Great Sphinx Of Giza, Egypt
A colossal sculpture in the middle of the sands is, perhaps, the biggest modern mystery. It was believed that it was the work of pharaohs. However, they only restored the Sphinx. His body resembling a lion, is covered by furrows. If you share the boldest assumptions, it is the marks left by the Great flood. Another odd thing is that the head is clearly contradicts the proportions. Besides, it turned out that there are some premises inside the giant and beneath it. Attempts to explore them led to incidents and to the prohibitions of the authorities. Is this the guardian of the secret knowledge left behind by, for example, the sunken Atlantis?
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