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Copper is one of the first metals with which people began to work around 5000 BC, during the so-called copper era (the chalcolithic period), when there was a radical transition from primitive Neolithic to Bronze stone technology. For millennia, copper has been the main engine of the global economy. The most common prehistoric metal artifacts from copper alloys still surprise archaeologists.
1. The Lost Treasure of the Copper Scroll
On March 14, 1952, an archaeologist discovered a mysterious copper scroll that contrasted sharply with all the other Dead Sea scrolls found earlier in the Qumran caves. The material of the scroll, its author, script, language and style indicate that he ended up in cave number 3 at a different time than 14 other scrolls made of parchment and papyrus. According to Professor Richard Freund, “the copper scroll is probably the most unique, the most important and least understood among the Dead Sea scrolls.” Continue reading
The mystery of Easter Island stirs the minds of historians and enthusiasts over the centuries. It has not yet been possible to explain the origin of the giant stone statues installed on the most remote inhabited island. Scientists are puzzled over how the multi-ton statues moved around the island, and what the drawings on their bases, found during excavations, mean.
Scientists suggest that the indigenous peoples who lived on the island created stone statues of moai in memory of their ancestors. A new sculpture appeared in honor of every deceased chief of the tribe or other important personages.
The islanders carved statues from volcanic rock. To implement their plans, the sculptors have developed a special technology. At first, they plentifully moistened the rock, waiting for it to soften, and only after that they began to work with it. A team of 5-6 sculptors usually worked on one statue, it took about a year to create a moai. The manufacturing process took place at a quarry located in the center of the island in the crater of an extinct volcano. Many statues still remain there. The main mystery is connected with those moai, which are installed on the coast. Understand how the islanders delivered stone giants to the right place until it is possible. Continue reading
It was an early summer morning on the Yucatan Peninsula. Archaeologists who excavated the ancient Mayan temple recently woke up and were just about to start work. But the youngest participant of this expedition, a girl named Anna, was already near the destroyed altar found on the eve and with might and main worked with a brush. On this day, she turned 17 years old, and she dreamed of finding something unusual in the excavation – for her it would be the best gift.
And Anna’s dream came true.
Another movement of the brush – and out of the ground came through something smooth and shiny in the sun. A few more minutes of excavation – and the girl was already holding a truly amazing find. A human skull made of the purest rock crystal! Continue reading