A Species with Amnesia: The forgotten timeline of Planet Earth after the Great Flood

Great Deluge - Great Flood

Are humans really a species with amnesia? Is it true that there is a forgotten historic timeline of our planet? A timeline ignored by mainstream historians?

According to several theories, and historical records, the answer is YES.

Interestingly, numerous cultures around the globe speak of a time when our planet was struck by a great deluge, which the ‘gods’ themselves called upon Earth and early man.

But where does the story of the Grat Flood comes from? Many people are completely unaware that the story of the Great Flood (or the Great Deluge, as the Anunnaki called it) has its origins in Ancient Sumer.

To understand their accounts, we need to travel to Eriu, — modern day Abu Shahrein, Iraq — the first city ever established by the gods, and home to the Ancient Sumerian deity Enki.

Researchers believe this ancient city was built around 5400 BC.

The ancient Sumerian King List supports the theory that suggests Eridu was, in fact, the “city of the first kings,” stating:
“After the kingship had descended from heaven, the kingship was in Eridu.”

In this ancient city, we find the Eridu Genesis an ancient Sumerian Text, which describe the creation of the world, the construction of all ancient cities and the Great Flood, which swept across the land.The Eridu Genesis, which is believed to have been composed circa 2,300 BCE, is the earliest known account fo the Great Flood, predating the more popular Great Flood described in the biblical book of the Genesis.

This is where many researchers have different views.

According to Thorkild Jacobsen, in his book ‘The Treasures of Darkness’:
“After Nintur [Ninhursag] had decided to turn man from his primitive nomadic camping grounds toward city life, the period began when animals flourished on earth and kingship came down from heaven.

“The earliest cities were built, were named, had the measuring cups, emblems of a redistributional economic system, allotted to them, and were divided between the gods.

“Irrigation agriculture was developed, and man thrived and multiplied. However, the noise made by man in his teeming settlements began to vex Enlil sorely, and, driven beyond endurance; he persuaded the other gods to wipe out man in a great flood.

“Enki, thinking quickly, found a way to warn his favorite, one Ziusudra. He told him to build a boat in which to survive the flood with his family and representatives of the animals.”

But if the great Flood did exist on Earth, what happened on Earth prior to the great destruction?
According to The Cosmic Code: The Sixth Book of The Earth Chronicles by Zecharia Sitchin, this is the historical timeline of our planet before and after the great Flood:

FloodBible_03a

EVENTS BEFORE THE DELUGE

450,000 years ago

On Nibiru, a distant member of our solar system, life faces slow extinction as the planet’s atmosphere erodes.
Deposed by Anu, the ruler Alalu escapes in a spaceship and finds refuge on Earth. He discovers that Earth has gold that can be used to protect Nibiru’s atmosphere.
445,000
Led by Enki, a son of Anu, the Anunnaki land on Earth, establish Eridu — Earth Station I — for extracting gold from the waters of the Persian Gulf.
430,000
Earth’s climate mellows. More Anunnaki arrive on Earth, among them Enki’s half-sister Ninhursag, Chief Medical Officer.
416,000
As gold production falters, Anu arrives on Earth with Enlil, the heir apparent. It is decided to obtain the vital gold by mining it in southern Africa.
Drawing lots, Enlil wins command of Earth Mission; Enki is relegated to Africa. On departing Earth, Anu is challenged by Alalu’s grandson.
400,000
Seven functional settlements in southern Mesopotamia include a Spaceport (Sippar), Mission Control Center (Nippur), a metallurgical center (Shuruppak).
The ores arrive by ships from Africa; the refined metal is sent aloft to orbiters manned by Igigi, then transferred to spaceships arriving periodically from Nibiru.
380,000
Gaining the support of the Igigi, Alalu’s grandson attempts to seize mastery over Earth. The Enlilites win the War of the Olden Gods.
300,000
The Anunnaki toiling in the gold mines mutiny. Enki and Ninhursag create Primitive Workers through genetic manipulation of Ape woman; they take over the manual chores of the Anunnaki.
Enlil raids the mines, brings the Primitive Workers to the Edin in Mesopotamia. Given the ability to procreate, Homo Sapiens begins to multiply.
200,000
Life on Earth regresses during a new glacial period.
100,000
Climate warms again. The Anunnaki (the biblical Nephilim), to Enlil’s growing annoyance, marry the daughters of Man.
75,000
The “accursation of Earth” – a new Ice Age-begins. Regressive types of Man roam the Earth. Cro-Magnon man survives.
49,000
Enki and Ninhursag elevate humans of Anunnaki parentage to rule in Shuruppak. Enlil enraged. Plots Mankind’s demise.
13,000
Realizing that the passage of Nibiru in Earth’s proximity will trigger an immense tidal wave, Enlil makes the Anunnaki swear to keep the impending calamity a secret from Mankind.

 

Bird man

EVENTS AFTER THE DELUGE
11,000 B.C.
Enki breaks the oath, instructs Ziusudra/Noah to build a submersible ship. The Deluge sweeps over the Earth; the Anunnaki witness the destruction from their orbiting spacecraft.
Enlil agrees to grant the remnants of Mankind implements and seeds; agriculture begins in the highlands. Enki domesticates animals.
10,500 B.C.
The descendants of Noah are allotted three regions. Ninurta, Enlil’s foremost son, dams the mountains and drains the rivers to make Mesopotamia habitable; Enki reclaims the Nile valley.
The Sinai peninsula is retained by the Anunnaki for a post-Diluvial spaceport; a control center is established on Mount Moriah (the future Jerusalem).
9,780 B.C.

Ra/Marduk, Enki’s firstborn son, divides dominion over Egypt between Osiris and Seth.
9,330 B.C.
Seth seizes and dismembers Osiris, assumes sole rule over the Nile Valley.
8,970 B.C.
Horus avenges his father Osiris by launching the First Pyramid War. Seth escapes to Asia, seizes the Sinai peninsula and Canaan.
8,670 B.C.
Opposed to the resulting control of all the space facilities by Enki’s descendants, the Enlilites launch the Second Pyramid War. The victorious Ninurta empties the Great Pyramid of its equipment.
Ninhursag, the half-sister of Enki and Enlil, convenes a peace conference. The division of Earth is reaffirmed.
Rule over Egypt is transferred from the Ra/Marduk dynasty to that of Thoth. The Heliopolis is built as a substitute Beacon City.
8,500 B.C.
The Anunnaki establish outposts at the gateway to the space facilities; Jericho is one of them.
7,400 B.C.
As the era of peace continues, the Anunnaki grant Mankind new advances; the Neolithic period begins. Demi-gods rule over Egypt.
3,800 B.C.
Urban civilization begins in Sumer as the Anunnaki reestablish there the Olden Cities, beginning with Eridu and Nippur.
Anu comes to Earth for a pageantful visit. A new city, Uruk (Erech), is built in his honor; he makes its temple the abode of his beloved granddaughter Inanna/lshtar.

noahs-ark-flood-creation

KINGSHIP ON EARTH
3,760 B.C.
Mankind granted kingship. Kish is first capital under the aegis of Ninurta. The calendar begun at Nippur. Civilization blossoms out in Sumer (the First Region).
3,450 B.C.
Primacy in Sumer transferred to Nannar/Sin. Marduk proclaims Babylon “Gateway of the Gods.” The “Tower of Babel” incident. The Anunnaki confuse Mankind’s languages.
His coup frustrated, Marduk/Ra returns to Egypt, deposes Thoth, seizes his younger brother Dumuzi who had betrothed Inanna.
Dumuzi accidentally killed; Marduk imprisoned in the Great Pyramid. Freed through an emergency shaft, he goes into exile.
3,100 – 3,350 B.C.
The years of chaos end with the installation of first Egyptian Pharaoh in Memphis. Civilization comes to the Second Region.
2,900 B.C.
Kingship in Sumer transferred to Erech. Inanna given dominion over the Third Region; the Indus Valley Civilization begins.
2,650 B.C.
Sumer’s royal capital shifts about. Kingship deteriorates. Enlil loses patience with the unruly human multitudes.
2,371 B.C.
Inanna falls in love with Sharru-Kin (Sargon). He establishes new capital city Agade (Akkad). Akkadian empire launched.
2,316 B.C.
Aiming to rule the four regions, Sargon removes sacred soil from Babylon. The Marduk-Inanna conflict flares up again.
It ends when Nergal, Marduk’s brother, journeys from south Africa to Babylon and persuades Marduk to leave Mesopotamia.
2,291 B.C.
Naram-Sin ascends the throne of Akkad. Directed by the warlike Inanna, he penetrates the Sinai peninsula, invades Egypt.
2,255 B.C.
Inanna usurps the power in Mesopotamia; Naram-Sin defies Nippur. The Great Anunnaki obliterate Agade. Inanna escapes. Sumer and Akkad occupied by foreign troops loyal to Enlil and Ninurta.
2,220 B.C.
Sumerian civilization rises to new heights under enlightened rulers of Lagash. Thoth helps its king Gudea build a ziggurat-temple for Ninurta.
2,193 B.C.
Terah, Abraham’s father, born in Nippur into a priestly-royal family.
2,180 B.C.
Egypt divided; followers of Ra/Marduk retain the south; Pharaohs opposed to him gain the throne of lower Egypt.
2,130 B.C.
As Enlil and Ninurta are increasingly away, central authority also deteriorates in Mesopotamia. Inanna’s attempts to regain the kingship for Erech does not last.

q

THE FATEFUL CENTURY
2,123 B.C.
Abraham born in Nippur.
2,113 B.C.
Enlil entrusts the Lands of Shem to Nannar; Ur declared capital of new empire.
Ur- Nammmu ascends throne, is named Protector of Nippur. A Nippurian priest — Terah, Abraham’s father — comes to Ur to liaison with its royal court.
2,096 B.C.
Ur-Nammu dies in battle. The people consider his untimely death a betrayal by Anu and Enlil. Terah departs with his family for Harran.
2,095 B.C.
Shulgi ascends the throne of Ur, strengthens imperial ties. As empire thrives, Shulgi falls under charms of Inanna, becomes her lover. Grants Larsa to Elamites in exchange for serving as his Foreign Legion.
2,080 B.C.
Theban princes loyal to Ra/Marduk press northward under Mentuhotep I. Nabu, Marduk’s son, gains adherents for his father in Western Asia.
2,055 B.C.
On Nannar’s orders, Shulgi sends Elamite troops to suppress unrest in Canaanite cities. Elamites reach the gateway to the Sinai peninsula and its Spaceport.

2,048 B.C. 

Shulgi dies. Marduk moves to the Land of the Hittites. Abraham ordered to southern Canaan with an elite corps of cavalrymen.
2,047 B.C.
Amar-Sin (the biblical Amraphel) becomes king of Ur. Abraham goes to Egypt, stays five years, then returns with more troops.
2,041 B.C.
Guided by Inanna, Amar-Sin forms a coalition of Kings of the East, launches military expedition to Canaan and the Sinai. Its leader is the Elamite Khedor-la’omer. Abraham blocks the advance at the gateway to the Spaceport.
2,038 B.C.
Shu-Sin replaces Amar-Sin on throne of Ur as the empire disintegrates.
2,029 B.C.
Ibbi-Sin replaces Shu-Sin. The western provinces increasingly to Marduk.
2,024 B.C.
Leading his followers, Marduk marches on Sumer, enthrones himself in Babylon. Fighting spreads to central Mesopotamia.
Nippur’s Holy of Holies is defiled. Enlil demands punishment for Marduk and Nabu; Enki opposes, but his son Nergal sides with Enlil.
As Nabu marshals his Canaanite followers to capture the Spaceport, the Great Anunnaki approve of the use of nuclear weapons. Nergal and Ninurta destroy the Spaceport and the errant Canaanite cities.
2,023 B.C.
The winds carry the radioactive cloud to Sumer. People die a terrible death, animals perish, the water is poisoned, the soil becomes barren.
Sumer and its great civilization lie prostrate. Its legacy passes to Abraham’s seed as he begets — at age 100 — a legitimate heir: Isaac.*

 

 

New Artifact-Filled Chambers Revealed under Teotihuacan

Tunnel-under-pyramid-in-Teotihucan
Big news in the archaeology world:
In 2003, torrential rains exposed the mouth of a previously unknown tunnel near the Temple of the Feathered Serpent at Teotihuacan, in central Mexico. Feathered Serpent excavation

Now, more than a decade later, researchers have reached the end of the 340’ (103m) tunnel (illustration) that runs about 60’ below the Temple. Finds from the tunnel (including the figure shown in the photo above) include engraved conch shells, amber fragments, mirrors, greenstone statues, ear spools, seeds, worked stone, beads, bones of animals and humans, mysterious clay spheres coated with a yellow mineral – over 50,000 pieces in all.

teo-feathered-serpentThe photo (left) shows the outside of the structure. A section added around 400 AD obscures the original façade (photo) featuring the feathered serpents that gave the structure its name. Archaeologists debate the significance of the figures. One set seems to be a realistic serpent while the other is a more blocky stylized creature sometimes identified at Tall, the storm god. However, Karl Taube, Mary Ellen Miller, and Michael Coe have said it is more likely a “war serpent” or “fire serpent.” At one time, the circles were filled with obsidian pieces that would have caught the sunlight.

<Teo feathered serpent Teotihuacan Facade_of_the_Temple_of_the_Feathered_Serpent

Many people label the new finds in the tunnel under the temple extravagant, gruesome, mysterious. Yet, when viewed next to teotihuacan-facade_of_the_temple_of_the_feathered_serpent

earlier finds from Teotihuacan and those of other cities in the area, the new discoveries seem very consistent. It’s their purpose that remains a mystery.

Where and What is Teotihuacan?

Teotihuacan, Maya, Olmec, Mixtec.  – The site is located about 30 miles (50 km) northeast of Mexico City.

teo-maya-olmec-map Teotihuacan is a world-famous archaeological site north of Mexico City, known for its massive pyramids, its precise layout, and the mystery surrounding its birth, its death, and a lot of what happened in between. We don’t know exactly who started this city around 150 BC, why these people embarked on an almost constant monumental building effort from 150 BC to around 250 AD, or what led to the sacking and burning of the city around 550 AD.

teotihuacan-view_from_pyramide_de_la_luna<Teotihuacan View_from_Pyramide_de_la_luna

Adding to the mystery is the lack of any written records. Either the people who burned the city also burned any written materials, or there simply weren’t any. It’s hard to imagine people designing and building such precise, massive structures without a written record, but none have appeared so far in the excavations.

At its height, the city center covered 19 square miles (32 square kilometers) and served a population of 25,000 to 150,000, depending on what source you read, making it the largest city in the Western Hemisphere at the time. Its military power and cultural influence spread throughout central Mexico, out into the Yucatan Peninsula and down into Guatemala.

On the other hand, Teotihuacan also borrowed from earlier and contemporary cultures in Mexico, especially the Olmec, Maya, and Mixtec. The very deliberate, celestially aligned design of earlier Olmec cities like La Venta and Tres Zapotes, with clusters of mounds and central plazas, found its greatest expression in Teotihuacan.

teo-olmec-mask<Olmec mask

Olmec masks like the one in the photo (left) provided inspiration for the artisans of Teotihuacan. The one shown in the photo (right) came from the newly excavated tunnel under the Temple of the Feathered Serpent. Teotihuacan mask Olmec greenstone masks and figures were a few of many cultural features absorbed into the Teotihuacan culture.

Maya and Mixtec cosmology from contemporary cities also found its way into Teotihuacan culture, as did the value placed on items like fine ceramics and greenstone.

But whatever earlier cities contributed to Teotihuacan, the Teotihuacanos exaggerated. Pyramids became gigantic. The Pyramid of the Sun, (photo, below) the most massive building on the site, stands 233.6’ (71.2 m) tall, and 733.2’ (223.5 m) long and wide, a huge, commanding construction even today. With its decorative plaster coating and top-most temple long gone, it now has the severe look of a multi-national corporate headquarters, a symbol of complete, collective, threatening, and unemotional power.

Pyramid_of_the_SunPyramid of the Sun

The whole site was so impressive to the Aztecs who moved into the area 600 years after Teotihuacan was abandoned that they considered it a holy place, a place where gods walked. Even the Spanish conquistadors didn’t destroy it. Its major damage has come from looters, both private and institutional, and from the ravages of time.

great_goddessSpiritual Beliefs

Murals painted in upper class Teotihuacan living areas have provided important clues about the people’s spiritual beliefs, especially veneration of a figure often called the Great Goddess, who is associated with the sacred mountain visible from the site, called Cerro Gordo (Fat Mountain), as well as water flowing from the mountain, rivers and rain, fertility and new growth.

<Teotihuacan-Great_Goddess

In the mural shown, the central figure (and the only one shown in the frontal view reserved for deities) has a bird face/mask with a strange mouth that might represent an owl or a spider. Out of the green feather headdress a twisting plant grows – perhaps a hallucinogenic morning glory vine. Circles (sometimes interpreted as mirrors), spiders and butterflies decorate the vine. Flowers sprout from its tips. Birds appear, some with sound scrolls, which probably indicate songs. From the figure’s outstretched hands, drops of water fall. Her torso splits into curling rolls filled with flowers and plants. From the bottom, under an arch of stars, seeds fall toward the border, which is a series of waves carrying stars and underwater creatures.

The figures shown in profile on the right and left of the Great Goddess carry what look like medicine bundles/offerings in one hand. From their other hand water emerges, as well as a cascade of seeds and circles. The entire background is a deep blood red. Karl Taube has related the circles to mirrors that appear in the creation story in which the sun shoots an arrow into the house of mirrors. The serpent, then released, fertilizes the earth. Thus, he argues, the serpent appears on the façade of the Temple of the Feathered Serpent surrounded by a headdress of mirrors.

tepantitla_mountain_stream_mura<Teotihuacan Tepantitla_Mountain_Stream_mura

The panel below the picture of the Great Goddess shows bands of water emerging from a mountain around which red, blue, and yellow human figures swim, interact (sing? dance?) and float among butterflies while plants sprout along a snake-like band of water. Interestingly, for a city known for its militarism and bloody sacrifices, the scene looks idyllic.

Some experts suggest that the Great Goddess figure was borrowed from the earlier Olmec figure recorded in a petroglyph at Chalcatzingo that shows a woman seated in a cave from which water flows. Outside the cave, maize plants sprout as male rain falls. (Photo, left; illustration, right)

chalcatzingo-petroglyph<Chalcatzingo petroglyph Chalcatzingo_Monument drawing

Others point to the Maya water deity Ixchel, the goddess of the moon, rain, surface chalcatzingo_monument-drawingwaters, weaving and childbirth, sometimes called the Midwife of Creation. (shown as a young woman in the illustration below).

Maya Ixchel Maiden

In her role as Mother Goddess and weaver, she set the universe in motion through the movement of her drop spindle. She was also called the Spider’s Web because she caught the morning dew in her web and made the drops into stars. However, she had two sides: the young woman and the old crone. She was both healer and destroyer, bringing about the destruction of the third creation through a terrible flood and then helping to birth the new age.

teo-maya-ixchel-maidenOf course, all of these interpretations have their detractors. Karl Taube interprets the entire site as an exaltation of sacred war. He says the circles found in the caches are related to the mirrors worn by warriors as well as to the house of mirrors from which the creator serpent originated in the creation story. The bodies found in the offertory caches might be captive warriors. His theory, however, doesn’t explain the significance of the murals.

Aztec water goddess Chalciuhtlicue

 Interestingly, the later Aztec water goddess Chalchiuhtilicue, who presides over running water and aids in childbirth, shares many features with the figure in the Teotihuacan murals painted hundreds of years earlier.

New Finds

So back to the amazing new discoveries –

The excavated section of the newly excavated tunnel under the Temple of the Feathered Serpent has 18 walls scattered throughout the length of the tunnel in a zigzag pattern, which archaeologists believe were used to seal off the tunnel on previous occasions. So this same route had been used many times before for some purpose, yet this was the last time. After this offering was placed, the tunnel was purposely filled and sealed.

tunnel_grid_search<Teotihuacan tunnel

Gomez feels going down the tunnel and leaving offerings probably had a ritual purpose. The original city was built over a four-chambered lava tube cave. In Mesoamerican cultures, caves were considered portals to the Underworld and the places of emergence at the time of creation. Perhaps, Gomez said, the trip into the tunnel provided the ritual power needed for a new leader. (Photo shows recent discovers in the tunnel, including greenstone figures in the foreground, dozens of conch shells, and plain pottery.

teo-shells-and-pots

 

 

Or the trip into the tunnel could have been a pilgrimage, a way to make contact with powerful spirit forces. Following the pattern evident in so many religious rituals around the world, the supplicant may have offered sacrifices in order to recognize the gods’ power and to seek their help.

A Survey of Discoveries

Back in 1982 and 1989, mass graves were found under and near the same Temple of the Feathered Serpent. The sites, dated to the period the temple was constructed, about 150 AD, included 137 people who’d been sacrificed with their hands tied behind their backs. They were accompanied by cut and engraved shells from the Gulf Coast (150 miles away), obsidian blades, slate disks, mirrors, ear spools, and a greenstone figurine with pyrite eyes. A hundred years later, people left very similar offerings in the tunnel.

In 1999, a burial site was discovered within the Pyramid of the Moon. That site yielded 150 burial offerings, including obsidian blades and points, greenstone figures, pyrite mirrors, conch and other shells, and the remains of eight birds of prey and two jaguars. Again, these are very similar offerings.

The male buried in the tomb under the Pyramid of the Moon was bound and executed, which seems to make it a sacrifice rather than a memorial. All of the human bodies found so far have been sacrificed. Some were decapitated, some had their hearts removed, others were bludgeoned to death. Some wore necklaces of human teeth. Sacred animals were also sacrificed: jaguars, eagles, falcons, owls, even snakes.

The 2014 discoveries, like the others, have been extravagant and gruesome. Some of the precious objects discovered in the tunnel include arrowheads, obsidian, amber, four large greenstone statues, pottery, dozens of conch shells, a wooden box of shells, animal bones and hair, skin, dozens of plain pottery jars, 15,000 seeds, 4,000 wooden objects, rubber balls, pyrite mirrors, crystal spheres, jaguar remains, even clay balls covered in yellow pigment (shown in photo). And some came quite a distance – conch shells from the Gulf of Mexico, jade from Guatemala, rubber balls from Olmec or Maya sites.

Teotihuacan yellow orbs

teo-yellow-orbsWhile this team, like the earlier ones, hopes to find a royal burial, as of this moment, they haven’t. So far, this too seems to be an offertory cache. The difference is that this moment doesn’t mark the building of a new pyramid; it marks the effective end of construction. Some event required this extravagant offering. While some think this cache might be the remains of a huge feast marking a great funerary and sacrificial ceremony, a tunnel 60’ underground seems an odd place for a celebration.

The timing suggests the event was more than the death of an old ruler or the ascension of a new ruler who needed the spiritual trappings of leadership. It looks as if the city faced a crisis – perhaps weather changes, disease, internal strife, or some other threat. At this critical point, they might have turned to the Great Goddess, the one responsible for life and death and new life, to help revive the old strength that defined Teotihuacan. Indeed, the murals featuring the Great Goddess as the provider of joyful, abundant life were painted about the same time.

According to Mary Ellen Miller’s book The Art of Mesoamerica, “Constant rain and water crises at Teotihuacan exacerbated the difficulty of building and maintaining the city. The preparation of lime for mortar and stucco requires vast amounts of firewood to burn limestone or seashells, and the more Teotihuacan grew, the more the surrounding forests were depleted. With deforestation came soil erosion, drought, and crop failure. In response, Teotihuacan may have erected ever more temples and finished more paintings thus perpetuating the cycle.”

Whether this environmental degradation from both drought and flood was the crisis that precipitated the offering or only part of it, we don’t know. However, if crops failed, the power structure would soon fail as well.

A Similar Case

In 1200 AD, a terrible drought in what is now Arkansas (USA) drove people to bring their precious stone pipes, engraved shell cups, stone maces, projectile points, and colorful woven tapestries to the site of a new mound to be constructed. They chanted and sang and danced and said prayers after they built high walls and a domed roof around the offering chamber. “They gathered at Spiro,” George Sabo, director of the Arkansas Archaeological Survey said, “brought sacred materials, and arranged them in a very specific way in order to perform a ritual intended to reboot the world.”

Perhaps that’s also what the Teotihuacanos tried to do.*

 

Article source:  MisFitsAndHeroes.wordpress.com/tag/discoveries-at-teotihuacan/

Ancient Arabic Book of Astrology and Magic dating back to the 10th or 11th century.

Image of opened magic book with magic lights

Imagine a real book of magical recipes and spells just like we dreamt of as children reading fairy tales?

The Picatrix is that book.

Dating back to the 10th or 11the century, it is an ancient Arabian book of astrology and occult magic. The Picatrix is filled with spells and cryptic astrological descriptions for almost any wish and has been translated and used by many cultures over the centuries.

Originally written in arabic, it was called Ghāyat al-Ḥakīm, which translates to “The Goal or Aim of the Sage“.

It was then translated to Spanish and to latin in 1256 for the Castilian king Alfonso.

That’s when it took on the known title Picatrix. Researcher David Pingree calls it “the most thorough exposition of celestial magic in Arabic” and describes the Picatrix as “Arabic texts on Hermeticism, Sabianism, Ismailism, astrology, alchemy and magic produced in the Near East in the ninth and tenth centuries A.D.”

The four books, which contain different chapters, are as follows:

  • Book I – “Of the heavens and the effects they cause through images made under them”
  • Book II – “Of the figures of the heavens in general, and of the general motion of the sphere, and of their effects in this world”
  • Book III – “Of the properties of the planets and signs, and of their figures and forms made in their colors, and how one may speak with the spirits of the planets, and of many other magical workings”
  • Book IV – “Of the properties of spirits, and of those things that are necessary to observe in this most excellent art, and how they may be summoned with images and other things”

The chapters then are divided amongst magic and its properties, the works of the planets, sun, and moon, the order of natural things, stones appropriate for each planet, figures, colors, garments, and incenses of the planets, confections of the spirits of the planets, and of averting harmful workings, and magic of miraculous effect, and the foods, incense, unguents, and perfumes that ought to be used to work by the spirits of the seven planets, how the vigor of the spirit of the Moon is drawn into things here below, and how incenses of the stars ought to be made, and certain compounds needed in this science.

old skull on old book and copper cauldron

What are in these magical recipes?

Well, they are regarded as obscene. The gross concoctions for various outcomes like “generating enmity” are meant to alter states of consciousness, and can even lead to out-of-body experiences or even death. Here’s what some of the ingredients include: blood, bodily excretions, brain matter mixed with copious amounts of hashish, opium, and psychoactive plants.

But they aren’t all so gruesome.

The Picatrix also heavily focuses on astrology, and viewing the future with the intention of controlling or improving it. There are dozens of spells to bring about desires and outcomes, which involve taking certain steps that consider the positions of cosmology. For instance, the spell to place love between two people is:

“Fashion two images with the 1st face of Cancer rising, and Venus therein, and the Moon in the 1st face of Taurus in the eleventh house. And when you have made these images, join each to the other face to face and bury them in the house of the other . And they will care for each other and have an enduring love between them.” (The Picatrix Book I, Chapter 5)

Other examples of spells include finding lost treasure, increasing crops, health, wealth and friendship.

However, historians note that some may have been lost in translation.

One researcher, Martin Plessner says, “neither the Arabic psychology of study nor the Hebrew definition of the experiment is rendered in the Latin Picatrix. The Latin translator omits many theoretical passages throughout the work.”

Either way, this ancient document is fascinating. It marks and represents many themes that have evolved throughout human history. As mysterious as it all may be, this may give us some clues to astrological phenomena and “black” magic.
References:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Picatrix

The Lost Cycle of Time

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Ancient cultures around the world spoke of a vast cycle of time with alternating Dark and Golden Ages; Plato called it the Great Year. Most of us were taught that this cycle was just a myth, a fairytale, if we were taught anything about it all. But according to Giorgio de Santillana, former professor of the history of science at MIT, many ancient cultures believed consciousness and history were not linear but cyclical, rising and falling over long periods of time. In their landmark work, Hamlet’s Mill, de Santillana and coauthor Hertha von Dechend, show that the myth and folklore of more than thirty ancient cultures speak of a cycle of time with long periods of enlightenment broken by dark ages of ignorance, indirectly driven by a known astronomical phenomena, the precession of the equinox. This is where it gets interesting.

We all know the two celestial motions that have a profound effect on life and consciousness. Diurnal motion, Earth’s rotation on its axis, causes humans to move from a waking state to a sleep state and back again every twenty-four hours. Our bodies have adapted to Earth’s rotation so well that it produces these regular changes in consciousness without our even thinking the process remarkable. Earth’s revolution around the sun —the second celestial motion, which Copernicus identified — has an equally significant effect, prompting trillions of life forms to spring out of the ground, to bloom, fruit, and then decay, while billions of other species hibernate, spawn, or migrate en masse. Our visible world literally springs to life, completely changes its color and stride, and then reverses with every waxing and waning of the second celestial motion.

The third celestial motion, the precession of the equinox, is less understood than the first two, but if we are to believe ancient cultures from around the world, its effect is equally transformative. What disguises the impact of this motion is its timescale. Like the mayfly, which lives but one day a year and knows nothing of the seasons, the human being has an average life span that comprises only one-360th of the roughly 24,000-year precessional cycle. And just as the mayfly born on an overcast, windless day has no idea that there is anything as splendid as sunshine or a breeze, so do we, born in an era of materialistic rationality, have little awareness of a golden age or higher states of consciousness – though that is the ancestral message.

Giorgio de Santillana, former professor of the history of science at MIT, many ancient cultures believed consciousness and history were not linear but cyclical, rising and falling over long periods of time. In their landmark work, Hamlet’s Mill, de Santillana and coauthor Hertha von Dechend show that the myth and folklore of more than thirty ancient cultures spoke of a vast cycle of time encompassing alternating dark and golden ages moving with the precession of the equinox. Plato called this vast cycle the Great Year.

As Giorgio and Hertha point out, the idea of a great cycle linked to the slow precession of the equinox was common to numerous cultures before the Christian era, but today we are taught nothing of the cycle or told it is just a fairytale, there was no “golden age.” An increasing body of new astronomical and archaeological evidence, however, suggests that this cycle may have a basis in fact. More importantly, understanding the cycle and the character of each epoch or season provides insight into civilization’s direction. So far the Ancients are right on; consciousness does seem to be expanding since the depths of the dark ages, reflected as vast improvements throughout society. So what drives these changes and what can we expect in the future? Understanding the cause of precession is key.

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Precession Observed

The observation of Earth’s three motions is quite simple. In the first, rotation, we see the sun rise in the east and set in the west every twenty-four hours. And if we were to look at the stars just once a day, we would see a similar pattern over a year: the stars rise in the east and set in the west. The twelve constellations of the zodiac — the ancient markers of time that lie along the ecliptic, the sun’s path — pass overhead at the rate of about one per month and return to the starting point of our celestial observation at the end of the year. And if we looked just once a year, say on the autumnal equinox, we would notice the stars move retrograde (opposite to the first two motions) at the rate of about one degree every seventy years. At this pace, the equinox falls on a different constellation approximately once every 2,000 years, taking about 24,000 years to complete its cycle through the twelve constellations. This is called the precession (the backward motion) of the equinox relative to the fixed stars.

The standard theory of precession says it is principally the Moon’s gravity acting upon the oblate Earth that must be the cause of Earth’s changing orientation to inertial space, a.k.a. “precession.” However, this theory was developed before astronomers learned the solar system could move and has now been found by the International Astronomical Union to be “inconsistent with dynamical theory.” Ancient oriental astronomy teaches that an equinox slowly moving or “precessing” through the zodiac’s twelve constellations is simply due to the motion of the sun curving through space around another star, which changes our viewpoint of the stars from Earth. At the Binary Research Institute, we have modeled a moving solar system and found it does indeed better produce the precession observable, while resolving a number of solar system anomalies. This strongly suggests the ancient explanation may be the most plausible, even though astronomers have not yet discovered a companion star to Earth’s Sun.

Beyond the technical considerations, a moving solar system appears to provide a logical reason why we might have a Great Year, to use Plato’s term, with alternating dark and golden ages. That is, if the solar system carrying the Earth actually moves in a huge orbit, subjecting Earth to the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum of another star or EM source along the way, and shaping the subtle electrical and magnetic fields through which we move, we could expect this to affect our magnetosphere, ionosphere, and very likely all life in a pattern commensurate with that orbit. Just as Earth’s smaller diurnal and annual motions produce the cycles of day and night and the seasons of the year (both due to Earth’s changing position in relation to the EM spectrum of the Sun), so might the larger celestial motion be expected to produce a cycle that affects life and consciousness on a grand scale.

Just recently NASA discovered (March 2014) NASA that the earth’s rotation and motion through space rearranges the electrons in the radiation belt into a zebra pattern! This was entirely unexpected as it was believed these particles are moving too swiftly to be affected by the earth’s motion.

A hypothesis then for how consciousness might be affected by such a celestial cycle can be built on the work of Dr. Valerie Hunt, a former professor of physiology at UCLA. In a number of studies, she has found that changes in the ambient subtle electrical, EM and magnetic fields (which surrounds us all the time) can dramatically affect human cognition and performance. In short, consciousness appears to be affected by subtle fields of light, or as quantum physicist Dr. Amit Goswami might say, “Consciousness prefers light.” Consistent with myth and folklore, the concept behind the Great Year or cyclical model of history is based on the Sun’s motion through space, subjecting Earth to waxing and waning stellar fields (all stars are huge generators of EM spectra) and resulting in the legendary rise and fall of the ages over great epochs of time.

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A Historical Perspective

Current theories of history generally ignore myth and folklore and do not consider any macro external influences on consciousness. For the most part, modern history theory teaches that consciousness (or history) moves in a linear pattern from the primitive to the modern, with few exceptions, and it includes the following tenets:

  • Mankind evolved out of Africa
  • People were hunter-gatherers until about 5,000 years ago
  • Tribes first banded together for protection from other warring parties
  • Written communication preceded large engineered structures or populous civilizations

The problem with this widely accepted paradigm is that it is not consistent with the evolving interpretation of recently discovered ancient cultures and anomalous artifacts. In the last hundred years, major discoveries have been made in Mesopotamia, the Indus Valley, South America, Turkey and many other regions that break the rules of history theory and push back the time of advanced human development. Specifically, they show that ancient peoples were, in many ways, far more proficient and civilized nearly five thousand years ago than they were during the more recent dark ages of just six hundred to a thousand years ago. In Caral, an ancient complex of unknown origin on the west coast of Peru, we find six pyramids that are carbon dated to 2700 BC, a date contemporaneous with Egyptian pyramids and that rivals the time of the first major structures found in the so-called Cradle of Civilization in Mesopotamia. Caral is an ocean away from the Cradle. We find no evidence of writing or weaponry, two of the so-called necessities of civilization, but we do find beautiful musical instruments, astronomically aligned structures, and evidence of commerce with distant lands (fabrics, seeds and shells not indigenous to the area)— all signs of a peaceful and prosperous culture.

Gobekli Tepe presents an even greater challenge to conventional accounts of history. Dated to at least 9000 BC, this site in Turkey contains dramatic architecture, including carved pillars of huge proportions. To find that something so large and complex existed long before the dates accepted for the invention of agriculture and pottery is an archaeological enigma. These sites defy the standard historical paradigm. And what is stranger still is that so many of these civilizations seemed to decline en masse. In ancient Mesopotamia, Pakistan, Jiroft, and adjacent lands, we find knowledge of astronomy, geometry, advanced building techniques, sophisticated plumbing and water systems, incredible art, dyes and fabrics, surgery, medicine, and many other refinements of a civilized culture which seem to have emerged from nowhere and were completely lost over the next few thousand years.

By the time of the worldwide dark ages, every one of these civilizations, including the big ones in Egypt and the Indus Valley, had largely turned to dust or nomadic ways of life. Near the depths of the cyclic downturn, there were ruins and little else, while the local populace knew nothing of the builders except through legend. In some areas where larger populations still remained, such as parts of Europe, poverty, plague, and disease were often rampant, and the ability to read, write, or duplicate any of the earlier engineering or scientific feats had essentially disappeared. What happened?

While records of this period remain spotty, the archeological evidence indicates that consciousness, reflected as human ingenuity and capability, was greatly diminished. Humanity seemed to have lost the ability to do the things it used to do. Interestingly, this is just what many ancient cultures predicted. Stefan Maul, the world’s foremost Assyrianologist, shed light on this phenomenon in his 1997 Stanford Presidential Lectures series. He tells us that the Akkadians knew they lived in a declining era. They revered the past as a higher time and tried to hang on to it, but at the same time, they predicted and lamented the dark ages that would follow. His etymological studies of cuneiform tablets show the ancient words for “past” have now become our words for “future” and the ancient words for “future” have become our words for “past.” It is almost as if humanity orients its motion through time depending on whether it is going toward or away from a golden age.

This principle of waxing and waning epochs is depicted in numerous bas-reliefs found in ancient Mithraic “mystery school” temples. The famed Tauroctany, or bull-slaying scene, is usually surrounded by two boys, Cautes and Cautopetes. One holds a torch up on the ascending side of the zodiac, indicating a time of increasing light, and the other holds a torch down on the descending side of the zodiac, indicating a time of darkness. As the chart below shows, these time periods correspond with the Greeks’ “iron, bronze, silver and golden ages,” a simple way to describe the Great Year epochs.

Jarred Diamond, well-known historian-anthropologist and author of Guns, Germs and Steel, makes a good case that it is primarily local geographic and environmental advantages that determine which group of humans succeeds or fails versus another. Those that have the steel, guns, and bad germs win. Although this helps to explain many regional differences of the last few thousand years, it does not address the macro trends that seem to have affected all cultures, including China and the Americas, as they collectively slipped into the last worldwide dark age. The cyclical Great Year model overlays and augments Diamond’s observations with a reason for the widespread downturn. It implies that it is not only the geography and environment on Earth that determines a people’s relative success but also the geography and environment of Earth in space that affects humanity on a macroscopic scale. Just as small celestial motions dramatically affect life over the short term, so it appears that large celestial motions color life over the long term, resulting in the seasons of a Great Year.

Understanding that consciousness may indeed rise and fall with the motions of the heavens gives meaning to ancient myth and folklore and puts anomalous cultures and artifacts, such as the Antikythera device and the Babylon battery, into a historical context that makes sense. For example, the battery was developed at least 2000 years ago, lost in the dark ages, then reinvented by Volta in the post renaissance period. The same thing goes for prosthetic devices, brain surgery, knowledge of a heliocentric system and engineering, etc. etc. They were discovered lost, then rediscovered. It also speaks to why so many ancient cultures appear to have been fascinated with the stars and provides us with a workable paradigm in which to understand history. It could also help us identify the forces that propelled the Renaissance and that may be accelerating consciousness in our current era. Myth and folklore, the scientific language of yore, provide a deeper look at consciousness throughout the ages.*

Author’s Biography

By Walter Cruttenden –  Director of the Binary Research Institute, an archaeoastronomy think tank in California. He is the author of Lost Star of Myth and Time, The Great Year Adventures-with Tommy the Time-Traveling Turtle, and the award winning documentary, The Great Year, narrated by James Earl Jones. Cruttenden’s work studies the astronomy of ancient cultures, their almost universal belief in a cycle of time with alternating Dark and Golden Ages, and what this means for humanity today. For income he invents new ways to help people save and invest, and presently serves as founder CEO of Acorns.

 

 

Bacteria Discovered Inside 1000-Year-Old Incan Mummies Is Resistant To Modern Antibiotics

Ancient Bacteria

Scientists have discovered a gut bacteria inside 1,000-year-old Incan mummies. The bacteria is resistant to modern antibiotics even though the drugs were discovered within the last 100 years.

This surprising discovery was made when scientists examined the DNA within the guts of three Incan mummies dating back to between the 10th and 14th centuries and six mummified people from Italy, from between the 15th and 18th centuries.
According to Tasha Santiago-Rodriguez of California Polytechnic State University in San Louis Opisbo and her team that conducted the study this ancient bacteria is resistant to almost all modern antibiotics, including penicillin, vancomycin and tetracycline.
These ancient genes were largely in microbes whose resistance is problematic today, including Enteroccocus bacteria that can infect wounds and cause urinary tract infections. But they found that many other species, including some harmless ones, carried some of these resistant genes too.

“When you think about it, almost all these antibiotics are naturally produced, so it makes sense to find antibiotic genes as well,” says Santiago-Rodriguez.
The finding shows that genes that can confer resistance to antibiotics were relatively widespread hundreds of years before Alexander Fleming discovered penicillin in 1928.
“It’s ridiculous to think evolution of antibiotic resistance began when penicillin was discovered. It’s been going on for 2 billion years,” said team-member Raul Cano, also at California Polytechnic State University.

 

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“This is exciting data. While it is already well known that antibiotic resistance occurred naturally before people started using antibiotics, this study shows that resistance genes were already within the human gut long before we started using these drugs.
It begs the question of what was selecting for these genes at this time? Was it the natural production of antibiotics by other bacteria, or were there other, as yet unknown forces at play?” says Adam Roberts, who studies antibiotic resistance genes at University College London.
According to the scientists, these genes existed long before antibiotics became common, but it is our overuse of these drugs in both people and livestock that caused the superbug resistance to explode worldwide.*

 

Source: MessagetoEagle.com – Orig. Article: Archaeology.com     (07-09-2016)

 

40,000-year-old stone bracelet from Denison Cave is oldest ever found

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Dating back 40,000 years to the Denisovan species of early humans, new pictures show beauty and craftsmanship of prehistoric jewellery.

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<Made of chlorite, the bracelet was found in the same layer as the remains of some of the prehistoric people and is thought to belong to them.  [Credit: Anatoly Derevyanko and Mikhail Shunkov]

It is intricately made with polished green stone and is thought to have adorned a very important woman or child on only special occasions. Yet this is no modern-day fashion accessory and is instead believed to be the oldest stone bracelet in the world, dating to as long ago as 40,000 years.

Unearthed in the Altai region of Siberia in 2008, after detailed analysis Russian experts now accept its remarkable age as correct.

New pictures show this ancient piece of jewellery in its full glory with scientists concluding it was made by our prehistoric human ancestors, the Denisovans, and shows them to have been far more advanced than ever realised.

‘The bracelet is stunning – in bright sunlight it reflects the sun rays, at night by the fire it casts a deep shade of green,’ said Anatoly Derevyanko, Director of the Institute of Archaeology and Ethnography in Novosibirsk, part of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences.

‘It is unlikely it was used as an everyday jewellery piece. I believe this beautiful and very fragile bracelet was worn only for some exceptional moments.’

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General reconstruction of the view of the bracelet and comparison with a modern bracelet. [Credit: Anatoly Derevyanko and Mikhail Shunkov]

The bracelet was found inside the famous Denisova Cave, in the Altai Mountains, which is renowned for its palaeontological finds dating back to the Denisovans, who were known as homo altaiensis, an extinct species of humans genetically distinct from Neanderthals and modern humans.

Made of chlorite, the bracelet was found in the same layer as the remains of some of the prehistoric people and is thought to belong to them.

What made the discovery especially striking was that the manufacturing technology is more common to a much later period, such as the Neolithic era. Indeed, it is not clear yet how the Denisovans could have made the bracelet with such skill.

Writing in the Novosibirsk magazine, Science First Hand, Dr Derevyanko said: ‘There were found two fragments of the bracelet of a width of 2.7cm and a thickness of 0.9 cm. The estimated diameter of the find was 7cm. Near one of the cracks was a drilled hole with a diameter of about 0.8 cm. Studying them, scientists found out that the speed of rotation of the drill was rather high, fluctuations minimal, and that was there was applied drilling with an implement – technology that is common for more recent times.

‘The ancient master was skilled in techniques previously considered not characteristic for the Palaeolithic era, such as drilling with an implement, boring tool type rasp, grinding and polishing with a leather and skins of varying degrees of tanning.’

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Traces of the use of drilling with an implement on the bracelet from Denisova Cave
[Credit:: Anatoly Derevyanko and Mikhail Shunkov]

Chlorite was not found in the vicinity of the cave and is thought to have come from a distance of at least 200km, showing how valued the material was at the time.

Dr Derevyanko said the bracelet had suffered damage, including visible scratches and bumps although it looked as if some of the scratches had been sanded down. Experts also believe that the piece of jewellery had other adornments to make it more beautiful.

‘Next to the hole on the outer surface of the bracelet can be seen clearly a limited polished zone of intensive contact with some soft organic material,’ said Dr Derevyanko. ‘Scientists have suggested that it was a leather strap with some charm, and this charm was rather heavy. The location of the polished section made it possible to identify the ‘top’ and ‘bottom’ of the bracelet and to establish that it was worn on the right hand.’

Located next to the Anuy River, about 150 km south of Barnaul, the Denisova Cave is a popular tourist attraction, such is its paleontological importance. Over the years a number of remains have been found there, including some of extinct animals such as the woolly mammoth. In total evidence of 66 different types of mammals have been discovered inside, and 50 bird species.

The most exciting discovery was the remains of the Denisovans, a species of early humans that dated back as early as 600,000 years ago and were different to both Neanderthals and modern man.

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The entrance to the Denisova cave  [Credit: The Siberian Times]

In 2000 a tooth from a young adult was found in the cave and in 2008, when the bracelet was found, archaeologists discovered the finger bone of a juvenile Denisovan hominin, whom they dubbed the ‘X woman’. Further examination of the site found other artifacts dating as far back as 125,000 years.

The institute’s deputy director Mikhail Shunkov suggested that the find indicates the Denisovans – though now extinct – were more advanced than Homo sapiens and Neanderthals.

‘In the same layer, where we found a Denisovan bone, were found interesting things; until then it was believed these the hallmark of the emergence of Homo sapiens,’ he said. ‘First of all, there were symbolic items, such as jewellery – including the stone bracelet as well as a ring, carved out of marble.’

The full details of the ring are yet to be revealed.

‘These finds were made using technological methods – boring stone, drilling with an implement, grinding – that are traditionally considered typical for a later time, and nowhere in the world they were used so early, in the Paleolithic era. At first, we connected the finds with a progressive form of modern human, and now it turned out that this was fundamentally wrong. Obviously it was Denisovans, who left these things.’

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Archaeological excavations inside the cave.  [Credit: The Siberian Times]

This indicated that ‘the most progressive of the triad’ (Homo sapiens, Homo Neanderthals and Denisovans) were Denisovans, who according to their genetic and morphological characters were much more archaic than Neanderthals and modern human.’

But could this modern-looking bracelet have been buried with older remains?

The experts considered this possibility but rejected it, saying they believe the layers were uncontaminated by human interference from a later period. The soil around the bracelet was also dated using oxygen isotopic analysis.

The unique bracelet is now held in the Museum of History and Culture of the Peoples of Siberia and the Far East in Novosibirsk. Irina Salnikova, head the museum, said of the bracelet: ‘I love this find. The skills of its creator were perfect. Initially we thought that it was made by Neanderthals or modern humans, but it turned out that the master was Denisovan, at least in our opinion.

‘All jewellery had a magical meaning for ancient people and even for us, though we do not always notice this. Bracelets and neck adornments were to protect people from evil spirits, for instance. This item, given the complicated technology and ‘imported’ material, obviously belonged to some high ranked person of that society.’

While bracelets have been found pre-dating this discovery, Russian experts say this is the oldest known jewellery of its kind made of stone.

 

Source:  Author: Anna Liesowska |  The Siberian Times    [05-08-2015]

 

Skeleton with stone-encrusted teeth found in Mexico ancient ruins

Skull

Archeologists who found the 1,600-year-old skeleton near Mexico’s ancient Teotihuacan, said the woman was 35-40 when she died with intentionally deformed skull and teeth encrusted with mineral stones (AFP Photo/HO)
Mexico City (AFP) – Archeologists have discovered the 1,600-year-old skeleton of an upper-class woman whose skull was intentionally deformed and teeth were encrusted with mineral stones near Mexico’s ancient ruins of Teotihuacan.

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The woman, between 35 and 40 years old when she died, was buried with 19 jars that served as offerings, the National Anthropology and History Institute said.

Her cranium was elongated by being compressed in a “very extreme” manner, a technique commonly used in the southern part of Mesoamerica, not the central region where she was found, the institute said in a statement.

Although other intentionally deformed skeletons have been found in Teotihuacan, this one — dubbed “The Woman of Tlailotlacan” after the neighborhood where it was found — is among those with the most deformations.

Another distinctive feature, showing the woman was a “foreigner” in Teotihuacan, is the two round pyrite stones encrusted in her top front teeth, a technique used in Mayan regions in southern Mexico and Central America.

She also wore a prosthetic lower tooth made of a green stone known as serpentine.

The enigmatic pre-Hispanic city of Teotihuacan, some 50 kilometers (30 miles) north of Mexico City, thrived between the first and eighth centuries, after which its civilization vanished.

Its two majestic Sun and Moon pyramids are major tourist attractions.*

 

Source: AFP – YahooNews     (07-07-2016)

Unearthed: A Friars’ Leather Shop

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 Greyfriars excavation, Oxford, England  (Courtesy Oxford Archaeology) 

An excavation in Oxford, England, conducted by Oxford Archaeology in advance of the expansion of a shopping center, has turned up a large number of leather and wood objects dating to the fourteenth century, when the site was occupied by buildings associated with the Greyfriars religious order. The artifacts were unusually well preserved because they were buried beneath the water table. Among the finds are around 100 leather shoes, a leather bag, a leather money purse, and a wooden bowl.

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“Somebody seems to have been saving up worn-out shoes,” says Ben Ford, the excavation’s project manager. “Maybe it was a cobbler working at the friary.”*

 

 

Credit:  Written By Daniel Weiss  Contributor – Archaeology Magazine

Do you know that if you linked together all the Inca roads…

 …it would almost wrap around the     circumference of our entire planet?

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THE INCA ROAD SYSTEM WAS THE MOST EXTENSIVE AND ADVANCED TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM IN PRE-COLUMBIAN SOUTH AMERICA.

The network was based on two north-south roads with numerous branches. The best known portion of the road system is the Inca Trail to Machu Picchu.

The eastern route ran high in the puna grasslands and mountain valleys from Quito, Ecuador to Mendoza, Argentina. The western route followed the coastal plain not including in coastal deserts where it hugged the foothills.

The Inca road system linked together about 40,000 kilometres (25,000 mi) of roadway and provided access to over 3,000,000 square kilometres (1,200,000 sq mi) of territory.

When you consider that the Earth’s circumference is 40,075 km, the road network could almost encircle the entire planet!*….. Source: www.HeritageDaily.com

 

More about the Inca Engineering:

The Inca Road System 

The Inca road system formed a network known as the royal highway or qhapaq ñan, which became an invaluable part of the Inca empire, not only facilitating the movement of armies, people, and goods but also providing an important physical symbol of imperial control. Across plains, deserts, and mountains, the network connected settlements and administrative centres. Well-built and lasting, many roads included bridges, causeways, stairways, and also had small stations (chaskiwasi) and sometimes larger, more luxurious complexes (tambos) dotted along every 20 km or so, where travellers could spend the night and refresh.

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The Inca road system formed a network known as the royal highway or qhapaq ñan, which became an invaluable part of the Inca empire, not only facilitating the movement of armies, people, and goods but also providing an important physical symbol of imperial control. Across plains, deserts, and mountains, the network connected settlements and administrative centres. Well-built and lasting, many roads included bridges, causeways, stairways, and also had small stations (chaskiwasi) and sometimes larger, more luxurious complexes (tambos) dotted along every 20 km or so, where travellers could spend the night and refresh.

Inca Roads

<Inca road and bridge

ENGINEERING METHODS & MATERIALS

Inca roads were built without the benefit of sophisticated surveying equipment using only wooden, stone, andbronze tools. As they were built in different geographical zones using local populations, the roads are, consequently, not uniform in construction design or materials. The width of most roads varies from one to four metres, although some could be much bigger, such as the 15-metre wide highway in the Huánuco Pampa province. Sometimes there are also two or three roads constructed in parallel, especially near the larger urban centres. Flattened road beds – often raised – were usually made using packed earth, sand, or grass. The more important roads were finished with precisely arranged paving stones or cobbles. Roads were typically edged and protected with small stone walls, stone markers, wooden or cane posts, or piles of stones. Drainage was provided by frequent drains and culverts, which drew off rainwater from the road surface, channelling it either along or under the road. When crossing wetlands, roads were often supported by buttress walls or built on causeways. Bridges of stone or reeds were also constructed to cover distances in a more direct route as were large, stone, llama-friendly staircases in mountainous terrain. There was even an appointed official, the Chaka Suyuyuq, responsible for inspecting the empire’s bridges.

Generally, and despite their reputation for Roman-like long straight roads, Inca roads tended to follow natural contours as the straight stretches of road are rarely more than a few kilometres long. It is also noteworthy that Inca roads are very often more elaborate and well-constructed than was actually necessary. This attention to detail was almost certainly in order to impress travellers and conquered peoples of the superiority of Inca culture as felt by the lords of Cuzco.

Surely one of the most impressive sights and showcases for Inca engineering must have been the many rope suspension bridges which crossed perilous ravines. These were built using braids of reed or grass rope with wooden and fibre flooring. Perhaps the most famous crossed the Apurimac River near Cuzco and measured 45 metres in length. Suspension bridges were often built in pairs perhaps with one bridge for commoners and one for nobles. An alternative to such bridges was the oroya, a suspended basket which transported two or three people at a time over a greater distance than could be reached with a rope bridge. Local populations were given the responsibility of maintaining these perishable structures each year as part of their imperial tribute.

An Inca Road Rest Station

Inca test stn

ROAD USERS

The extensive reach of the road network allowed the Incas to better move armies across their territories in order to further expand the empire or maintain order within it. Trade goods and tribute from conquered peoples – both goods and people – could also be easily transported to and from the major Inca centres, typically using llama caravans and porters (there were no wheeled vehicles). Inca administrative officials also travelled along the roads in order to dispense justice or maintain records such as local agricultural production, tribute quotas, and censuses. Ordinary people were not permitted to use the roads for private purposes unless they had official permission. They also sometimes had to pay tolls for the privilege, especially at bridges.

Another interesting feature of Inca roads was the use of runners (chaski or chasquis). Moving as fast as they could, they operated in relays, passing information to a fresh runner stationed every six to nine kilometres. However, it was not only messages that were carried between population centres but also such perishable items as fresh fish and seafood for the tables of Inca nobles. With this system, information (and fish) could travel up to 240 km in a single day. Messages carried over long distances would have involved hundreds of oral exchanges, and to preserve the correct meaning of the original message, quipu – a coded assembly of strings and knots – were probably used to help the memory of the runners.

LEGACY

Many sections of the Inca road network survive today and are still used by pedestrians, especially near such sites as Machu Picchu, where large stone stairways and bridges give access to the site for modern tourists. In addition, some of the original Inca routes have had modern roads built directly over them, illustrating the skills and vision for crossing terrain and distances possessed by Inca engineers and road builders.*

 

Source Article by   – Contributor:  www.ancient.eu

 

12,000-year-old grave of Shaman woman unearthed in Galilee

Shawman

Bones of a prehistoric woman discovered in a burial site in the Hilazon cave in northern Israel. (Naftali Hilger)

Well-preserved burial site sheds new light on the prevalence of ritual practice in prehistoric human society

Adorned with tortoise shells, gazelle horns and a human foot, the 12,000-year-old grave of a woman unearthed in northern Israel is shedding new light on the prevalence of ritual practice in prehistoric society.

Israeli and American archaeologists, who discovered the well-preserved burial site in the Hilazon Tachtit Cave in the Galilee, suspect the body belonged to a female shaman who lived during the the late Natufian era (10,800-9,500 BCE)

Fragments of chalk and limestone along with a leopard’s pelvis, a forearm of a wild boar and an eagle’s wing were also among the unusual objects discovered surrounding the remains of the woman.

The team of archaeologists — led by Hebrew University’s Prof. Leore Grosman and Prof. Natalie Munro of Connecticut University — were able to speculatively reenact the woman’s funeral ceremony that took place as human societies began to shift from hunter gatherers to agriculture-based communities.

Hebrew University archaeologists uncover 12,000-year-old grave inside a cave in northern Israel (Naftali Hilger)

“One of the earliest funeral banquets ever to be discovered reveals a pre-planned, carefully constructed event that reflects social changes at the beginning of the transition to agriculture in the Natufian period,” a statement from the Hebrew University this week said of the discovery.

The cave — home to at least 28 other graves — was first discovered in 2006, though Grosman and Munro were only recently able to sequence the order of the funeral ritual.

“We’ve assigned the event to stages based on field notes, digitized maps, stones, architecture and artifact frequency distributions and concentrations,” Grosman said.

Grosman noted the wide range of activities required to preparation for the ritual, including the collection of various materials and animal slaughter.

“The significant pre-planning implies that there was a defined ‘to do’ list, and a working plan of ritual actions and their order,” he said.

The statement said the discovery was unprecedented, since the study of ancient burial rituals has up until now only been possible after humans began to bury their dead in archaeologically visible locations.

shawman_burial

The Natufian period (15,000-11,500 years ago) in the southern Levant marks an increase in the frequency and concentration of human burials.

“The remnants of a ritual event at this site provide a rare opportunity to reconstruct the dynamics of ritual performance at a time when funerary ritual was becoming an increasingly important social mediator at a crucial juncture deep in human history,” the researchers said.

According to Grosman and Munro, the unprecedented scale and extent of social change in the Natufian era make the period central to current debates regarding the origin and significance of social and ritual engagement in the prehistoric agricultural transition.*

6-07-2016

Source: by TIMES OF ISRAEL STAFF