Discoveries Challenge Beliefs on Humans’ Arrival in the Americas

brazil-archeology-video

Photo: Daniel Berehulak for The New York Times

SERRA DA CAPIVARA NATIONAL PARK, Brazil — Niede Guidon still remembers her astonishment when she glimpsed the paintings.

Preserved amid the bromeliad-encrusted plateaus that tower over the thorn forests of northeast Brazil, the ancient rock art depicts fierce battles among tribesmen, orgiastic scenes of prehistoric revelry and hunters pursuing their game, spears in hand.

“These were stunning compositions, people and animals together, not just figures alone,” said Dr. Guidon, 81, remembering what first lured her and other archaeologists in the 1970s to this remote site where jaguars still prowl.

Hidden in the rock shelters where prehistoric humans once lived, the paintings number in the thousands. Some are thought to be more than 9,000 years old and perhaps even far…

Read more at www.nytimes.com

From archaeological gems to stunning strolls (PHOTOS)

From archaeological gems to stunning strolls (PHOTOS)

The Grianán of Ailech, Ireland
Photo: Neil Jackman
Site: IrishCentral.com

As an archaeologist I really enjoy visiting the multitude of heritage sites around Ireland, and the country is packed with iconic historical sites like Newgrange, The Rock of Cashel and Blarney Castle. While absolutely wonderful places to visit, sometimes it can also be very rewarding to stray off the beaten path and explore some…

Kukulkan Pyramid Photo in 1892

Ever wondered how El Castillo aka “Kukulkan’s pyramid” looked back in the 1800′s? Below is one of the very first photographs taken in 1892 by Teobert Maler. Mr. Maler spent weeks exploring the ancient site of Chichen Itza. Today, this ancient monument is one of Mexico’s most visited archaeological sites. Have you visited this incredible site?

El Castillo Pyramid Mexico

El Castillo (Kukulkan Pyramid), Mexico – 1892.

 

Ancient Sites Celebrate The Spring Equinox!

After a very long cold Winter, Spring has finally arrived! All across the world people have gathered around numerous ancient sites to celebrate the arrival of this very important day. I’ve included two pictures of the most popular ancient sites where you can have a mystical experience. Happy Spring Day!

Stonehenge Spring Equinox

Photo: Stonehenge Tours

Chichen Itza Pyramid Spring Equinox

Photo: Chichen Itza Pyramid (Public Domain)

How to get from Cusco and Ollantaytambo to Machu Picchu:

Machu Picchu Citadel

Photo: BestofCusco.com

To get to Machu Picchu you need to first make your way to the city of Cusco in Peru which is the city and airport closest to the Machu Picchu archaeological site… for information on how to get to Cusco. Option 1: By Train. Most people get the train from either Cusco (4 hours), Urubamba (3 hours) or Ollantaytambo (2 hours) to the town of Machu Picchu. Pueblo which is also known as Aguas Calientes. There are numerous train departures every day by both Peru Rail and Inca Rail but do book your train tickets well in advance particularly in high season as it gets very busy.[...]

Red-Haired Giants In America?

One of the most incredible legends from the Paiute tribe in Nevada speaks of a war that their ancestors had with a race of red-haired giants. These giants were said to be as tall as 12 feet in height. According to the story, the Paiute people chased the giants into a cave where they hid and refused to leave. Frustrated by this the Paiute people ignited the surrounding bushes and the flames engulfed the entire cave. Some giants ran out of the cave and were immediately killed by the tribe’s arrows. The others that stayed in the cave burned to death.

Was there any truth to this story? Well, in 1911 skeletons and thousands of artifacts (including broken arrows) were discovered in Nevada dating to the time of the Paiute legend. Some of these mummified remains included a female that was 6.5 feet and a male that was well over 8 feet in height. Other remains were discovered in a lake bed near Lovelock, Nevada that was said to be over 10 feet tall!

Scientists are quick to dismiss any legend as fantastical stories made up by cultures. In this case however, hard scientific evidence proved to some point that there was a kernel of truth to the Paiute’s legend about a giant race of people in America.

Below is a video clip from the popular TV series “Ancient Aliens”. Author David Hatcher Childress shows you tantalizing evidence concerning enigmatic skulls found in the Nevada region. Could these skulls actually be remnants of the red-haired giants?

Great Zimbabwe – The Elliptical Building (Travel Photos)

great zimbabwe ancient africa

Great Zimbabwe – The Elliptical Building
Photo: ctsnow


The ruins of Great Zimbabwe (AD 1100 – 1500) are about 160 miles south of Zimbabwe’s capital city of Harare. Archaeologists believe the site was used for ritual ceremonies and trading with visiting coastal traders from afar. The site is scattered across 1800 acres and is attributed to a group of people known as the Shona. Some speculate that the Shona people built Great Zimbabwe to serve as an observatory so that they can map the stars and predict important dates. 

There are three major areas that are part of the Great Zimbabwe site. The first is the Hill Complex, the second is the Valley Complex and the third is the Elliptical Building. The latter is an enormous oval enclosure made entirely of large stones. Its wall reaches a height of 32 feet and is about 17 feet thick in width. It is an impressive structure that was once part of a city very rich in gold. No one knows why the Shona people built the Elliptical Building. It still remains a mystery to this day.

Easter Island – Ahu Tahai (Travel Photos)

Ancient Easter Island Ahu Tahai

Moai wearing a topknot.
Photo: P_R_

Ahu Tahai is regarded by many archaeologists to be the earliest site on Easter island dating from 690 AD. This picture shows one of the several Moai statues that was discovered there. It has a red topknot crown and coral eyes. The eyes seen today are a result of modern restorations because the originals were lost. Legends speak of these statues mysteriously moving by themselves without a single worker ever maneuvering them.

Real Indiana Jones professor decodes ancient manuscript

One of the world’s most mysterious manuscripts is the Voynich manuscript. It is an illustrated codex hand written in an unknown writing system. It has been studied by cryptographers for decades and no one to this day has successfully cracked its secrets. However, professor Stephen Bax thinks he might be on the right track. Watch his video below.

AN award-winning professor from the University has followed in the footsteps of Indiana Jones by cracking the code of a 600 year old manuscript, deemed as ‘the most mysterious’ document in the world. Stephen Bax, Professor of Applied Linguistics, has just become the first professional linguist to crack the [...]