Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Hypogeum Hal Saflieni: The Incredible Sound Effects of Malta’s Hypogeum Hal Saflieni

Hypogeum Hal Saflieni: The Incredible Sound Effects of Malta’s Hypogeum Hal Saflieni

Hypogeum Hal Saflieni – An Extraordinary Architecture

Hypogeum Hal Saflieni, in Malta, is said to be one of those typical specimens of an extraordinary architecture among the various other ancient architectures such as the Stonehenge, Great Pyramid of Giza and many others. The construction of this temple is considered to be a colossal task by the present age.

These have perplexed the modern man.HypogeumHal Saflieni has been considered enigmatic in its location together with its era which is another astounding element. Regarding its era, the temple is ancient and according to the professional archaeologists, it can be traced to almost 5,000 years back. This could probably be during the Bronze Age.

The surprising fact is that it is a subterranean temple which means that it is an underground temple. The temple is frequently labeled as a maze. Hypogeum Hal Saflieni has been considered as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. As per the researchers, it is said to be the oldest prehistory subterranean temple identified so far. The temple is said to be mysterious in several ways and has been screened with uncanny activities.
Hypogeum Hal Saflieni

Treasure Trove of Elongated Skulls

Hypogeum Hal Saflieni had also drawn numerous mystic investigators over a period of time. Besides this, the temple has given rise to be a treasure trove of elongated skulls probably from some unknown race which is identical to those of humans.

The most amazing and enigmatic thing regarding the temple is its implausible sound effect. Numerous experts have been drawn all across the globe due to the acoustic effects of the temple. Detailed studies have been conducted on the sound effects all over the temple to attain some insight into its mechanism, the purpose of its existence and the sound amplification properties. Hypogeum Hal Saflieniis said to have three layers where the vital rooms are oval in shape.

 Smaller rooms are also placed across the three layers of the temple. The rooms can be accessed through the various doors and corridors. The vital rooms differ somewhat from the smaller ones constructed. Besides this, the vital rooms seem to have arched vaulting and also tend to have fabricated inlets together with elaborate construction. These fabricated inlets have been designed in a manner in which we find the present-day constructions of doors and windows which are built above the ground.

The Oracle Chamber in Hypogeum Hal Saflieni

One of the compartments in the Hypogeum Hal Saflieni has been engraved out of solid limestone and that room is called the Oracle Chamber. It is from this amazing chamber which gives the sound amazing effects to its incredible construction.

According to the researchers, the temple had been the reserve of species and probably an oracle had been utilized to live there. As per William Arthur Griffiths, the author of `Malta and its Recently Discovered Prehistoric Temples’, whenever a word was enunciated while in the Oracle Chamber, the sound was magnified a hundredfold and the same was heard all through the temple.

He commented that this effect would have been great when the oracle was voiced while in the chamber and his voice resonating and echoing throughout the entire maze-like thunder. This could be very enigmatic, petrifying as well as inspiring in the temple. The experience of the sound emanating from the layers of the temple could be mind-blowing. One would be shaken when they would hear the sound and feel the vibrations in the tissues and the bones.

Sound Frequency – 110 Hz

Sound effect within the Hypogeum Hal Saflieni had been investigated by numerous researchers. Ruben Zahra along with his team from Italy, together with a composer from Malta had examined the sound properties of the subterranean temple, minutely. They eventually arrived at the conclusion that the sound resonated throughout the Oracle Chamber at a frequency of 110 Hz.

Frequency of this sound is said to be identical or close to the frequencies found in several ancient chambers all across the globe. One such example is Ireland’s Newgrange. According to Dr. Robert Jahn of Princeton University, it is the possibility of stone quality utilized in the structure of the chamber together with the magnitudes of the chamber. This tends to controls the pitch of the echo which is received.

 Hypogeum Hal Saflieni- Intensify Mystic Effect of Rituals 

Many have been perplexed on the purpose of the acoustic properties on this underground structure in Malta. Queries have not been fulfilled but there seems to be some assumptions on the same. A particular one has been put forth by Niccolo Bisconti from the University of Siena while another by Paola Debertolis from the University of Triests.

As per both of them the properties of the acoustic of Hypogeum Hal Saflieni was intended to impact the psyche of the people listening to the oracle. Moreover it was also to intensify the mystic effects of the rituals conducted in the chamber.

This has been considered as the most accepted theories since it has been provided with scientific support. Dr. Ian Cook together with his colleagues had conducted an experiment in 2008. Test subject had been shown to numerous resonance frequencies during the experiment.

Impact the Thinking of People 

Their brain functions were analyzed utilizing EEG. It was observed that when the test subjects had been exposed to the resonance frequency of 110 Hz during the experiment, an abrupt shift was noticed in the activity patterns on the prefrontal cortex of their brains.

 This gave rise to deactivation of language center in the test subjects with a momentary swing to right-sided control over the left-sided control, during emotional processing. This effect was not present in the other frequencies.

The reverberation frequency of 110 Hz as per the bio-behavioral scientists tends to shift on a certain part of the brain related to social behavior, understanding, and frame of mind. With regard to the Hypogeum Hal Saflieni, it is not certain that this information was available or not. It is uncertain whether the 110 Hz reverberation frequency of the Oracle Chamber had a purpose with the scientific structure or was it just a coincidence. However, one thing was certain that if there had been religious chanting, the resonances were intended to impact the thinking of the people.

Friday, November 1, 2019

Oldest Map of the Underworld Discovered

Oldest Map of the Underworld Discovered

Engravings – Oldest map

Engravings related to ancient Egyptian coffin has been discovered in a burial channel in the necropolis of Dayr al-Barsha. This amazing artwork discovered had been identified as the oldest copy of a map for the soul to gain eternal life. The burial channel comprises of a coffin which had been discovered in 2012.

 It has now been discovered to be in existence about 4000 years back. This Oldest map had been discovered by a professor in the Department of Archaeology at KU Leuven together with the director of the archaeological project in Middle Egypt, Harco Williams. The Book of Two Ways’ was considered to assist the dead in navigating through the scene of blazing lakes and knife manipulating demons to make it to `Rostau’ or the kingdom of Osiris.

The people were of the belief that if one lay on the body of Osiris, they would not die. The oldest map has now been resolved that the engravings discovered on the side of the coffin are considered to be one of the oldest found by man.
Oldest Map of the Underworld Discovered

Djehutinakht I – `Overlord to the Hare Nome’

As per the reports of Ancient Origins, earlier to this discovery, the people were of the opinion that the coffin had been home to Djehutinakht I. He was an ancient ruler governing the region between the 21st and 20th century BC and an ancient Egyptian `Overlord to the Hare nome’. He had been mentioned in the inscriptions.

However, as per the latest study, it has been suggested that the coffin had been occupied by the body of an exclusive female known as Ankh. The map for the dead has been imprinted in two panels made of wood. Though varieties have been discovered on various other coffins this is considered to be the oldest in antiquity. The inscription discovered on the wooden panels is said to be a mixture of hieroglyphs together with symbols that the Ancient Egyptians are familiar with `The Book of Two Ways’.

It portrays two winding lines with instructions of two routes leading the dead to the Ancient Egyptian god of the dead, in the afterlife. Besides this, spells are also mentioned in the text to assist the dead in warding off evil during the path to their destination.

 According to Dr. Foy Scalf of the University of Chicago as informed to The Times, he states that in several manners, the Book of Two Ways could be described as the first illustrated book in ancient times. He further added that it offered the first illustrated guide to sacred geography.

Few Artefacts

Copies of the archaic text, inscribed for Middle Kingdom officials together with their subordinates, had also been discovered on papyri, mummy masks on tomb walls as well as in other coffins. .In some news, it had been disclosed that the grave raiders had looted £700,000 of gold from the tomb of Pharaoh and were speared as punishment.

 It is one of the few artifacts located in the tomb where several grave raiders had ransacked the grave numerous times during their visits ages ago. This antique book is said to be a fragment of a bigger work considered as the coffin texts.

This comprises of 1,185 spells, together with incantations and religious inscriptions pertaining to the afterlife. This is also said to be a fragment of `The Book of the Dead’. `The Book of the Dead’ considered to be an Egyptian manuscript, is around 20 meters in length. It has magical spells that are inscribed on papyrus.

These have been specially made by the members of the families on the death of their loved one. The intention was to guide them during their journey to their final destination after death to the next world.

No Record/History

The opening of the tomb had given rise to fears of the Ancient Egyptian ‘Curse of the Pharaohs’. The apparent spell considered by some was said to be cast on any person who would disturb the mummy of the Ancient Egyptian beings.

Scientists hope to use the discovery to uncover more of the text's secrets. Not much is related about the Book of Two Ways and its origin. There is no record of when and who had written the same and its details are limited. Scholars and archaeologists have still not been capable of explaining when the engravings could have been written.

Moreover, there is also a risk of making cultural assumptions with regards to the ancient ideas with the prevailing mind-set of the 21st century. The Book of Two Ways, irrespective of its interpretation, is considered to be conveying a message of how death and the life after that seem to play an important role in the cultural mind of a human being. However researchers have some hope of coming across related samples in the near future. They are hoping to utilize the findings to reveal more secrets of the texts they have excavated.

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Gundestrup cauldron: Is It a Celtic Artefact or Indian?

Gundestrup cauldron

Gundestrup Cauldron – Popular Silver Bowl

A popular silver bowl located over hundred years back in a turf swamp in Jutland in Denmark is the Gundestrup Cauldron. It was discovered by peat cutters in a peat bog known as Raevemose. At that point of time, the Danish government offered a reward to the discoverers who consequently fought among themselves over its separation.

Investigations by Palaeobotanical on the peat bog during the time it was located indicated that when the cauldron had been deposited, the land seemed dry and the turf had gradually expanded over it. The mode of heaping over the cauldron indicated an attempt of making it unobtrusive and concealed. Another investigation was conducted in 2002 of Reavemose, and it was assumed that the peat bog could have prevailed when the cauldron had been submerged.

Decorated with Repousse Work

The Gundestrup cauldron comprises of a round-shaped bottom cup, making the lower area of the cauldron known as the base plate. There are five interior plates above and another seven exterior plates. The eighth exterior plate is missing, which needs to encircle the cauldron. There are only two segments of the round rim towards the top of the cauldron.

Apart from the decorated round medallion towards the centre of the interior area, the plate at the base is said to be smooth and not decorated internally and externally. However, the other plates seem to be decorated greatly with repousse work beaten from beneath to move out the silver. Other procedures had been utilised to add more aspect bringing out wide trimming together with some use of decorated pieces of glass for the figures. Overall the weight of the Gundestrup cauldron is just below 9 kilograms.

Gundestrup: Largest Specimen of European Iron Age

Its exteriors have been richly decorated with various scenes of war and sacrifice, a goddess flanked by elephants such as Gajalakshmi, deities wrestling beasts and a mediating figure with stag’s antlers. The Gundestrup cauldron dates back to the middle of the 2nd century BC.

Taking the elephants into consideration, the iconography should be Indic while the yogic figure in cross-legged Indian pose appears to be Pasupati (Siva). The Gundestrup cauldron is said to be one of the largest specimens of silver of European Iron Age. Its diameter was 69 cm and a height of 42 cm. When the site was excavated, the Gundestrup cauldron was located in a dismantled state together with various other pieces piled beneath the base in a marshland.


Elements of Gaulish & Thracian Origin

Though the Gundestrug cauldron was traced in Denmark, it could not have been produced there. Elements of Gaulish and Thracian origin signs have been seen in the workmanship, metallurgy and images. Procedures and basics of the style of the panel are connected with the Thracian silver, and most of the description of the human figure is linked to the Celts.

However several attempts to connect the scene with that to the Celtic mythology seem to be questioned. Another characteristic of the iconography has originated from the Near East. Hospitability probably was the responsibility of the Celtic leaders. Though the cauldron seems to be an important item of prestige metalwork, they are generally smaller and plain.

Gundestrup: Variation of Female-Male depiction

The Gundestrug cauldron had been traced in parts, and the same had to be reassembled. Sophus Muller determined the traditional order of the plated and was the first to analyse the cauldron. He utilises his reasoning on the positions of the trace solder placed towards the rim of the bowl.

A puncture sign in two cases tends to penetrate the interior and exterior plated supporting in creating the order. In its concluding stage, the plates are placed in a variation of female-male depiction and presuming that the missing plate could be of a female. However, not all the analysts are in agreement with Muller’s comparison.

According to Timothy Taylor, the art historian, he stated that besides the two cases of puncturing, the comparison cannot be determined from the point of view of the solder alignment. He debates that the plates do not seem to be directly adjacent to each other. They tend to be divided by a 2 cm distance. Hence the plate in this order is not to be read with conviction as the true narrative, should one exist.

Carved By Indian Craftsmen

As per some of the historians, the Gundestrup cauldron had been carved by craftsmen of Indian origin in Thrace. The National Museum of Denmark has raised this question, ‘The Gundestrup cauldron’s motifs draw the observer into an alien universe far from that of the people who deposited in the bog in north Jutland.

Elephants, lions and several unknown gods, represented in a different style, indicate that the cauldron originally came from a distant area to the south or southeast. Exactly where it was made is still open to question. Perhaps it was a gift to a great chieftain or could it have been war booty?’ Taylor mentioned in the Scientific American that `a shared pictorial and technical tradition stretched from India to Thrace where the cauldron was made and then to Denmark.

For instance, yogic rituals are inferred from the poses seen of the antler-bearing man on the cauldron and of an ox-headed figure on a seal impress from the city of Mohenjo-Daro. The other three connections are the ritual baths of goddesses with the elephants, Lakshmi is the Indian goddess, Visnu, wheel gods and Hariti, the goddesses with braided hair and paired birds.

Theory of Thracian Origin

The bowl has several features which seem to have some similarity with the ornamental plate from the Thracian grave at Stara Zagora in Bulgaria. Therefore its theory is of Thracian origin. From the observation of the clothing of the figures, it seems to be Indian, considering the woven herringbone tight costumes together with the cummerbund which both the men as well as the women seem to attire themselves with.

It has been presumed that the Gundestrup cauldron had been the work of several silversmiths. With the use of scanning electron microscopy, it has been identified by Benner Larson that 15 various punches had been utilised on the plates. These were categorised into three various toolsets. No single plate had marks of more than one of these sets which portray that at least three diverse silversmiths had worked on it.

Thursday, October 3, 2019

Pashupati Seal- Horned Gods

 Pashupati Seal – Horned Headdress

The finding of the ancient Harappa and Mohenjo-Daro sites has provided a different outlook on the ancient history of this town. The well planned urban spaces together with the town plans, are said to be amazing. Observing the relics discovered at the site has provided important perceptions on the culture of the Indus Valley Civilization (IVC). One of great importance is the `Pashupati Seal’. This well-known seal is said to be the carving of a man having horned headdress.

He has been a subject of celebrated conjecture. Many have been speculating on whether he was a man in a horned headdress or a horned god of devotion. Was this idol a predecessor to the Hindu Shiva? Nonetheless, the Pashupati Seal is not considered to be completely unique. Identical icons have been traced to several cultures of the world.

Seals – Trade Mechanisms

The seal has been engraved on a chip of steatite which is a soft stone, resistant to decay and soft for carving. With the discovery of the significant number of the seals, it has led. Some of the scholar with the opinion that seals cutting had been one of the leading industries of Harappan settlements. The work of art of these seals portrays a representation of the religious character and the kind of culture as well as the social life of the people of that age.

The pictographic inscription seen on the Pashupati seal is of great importance since they give some insight into the language used by the people of that age. It could probably be that seals were utilised as a part of trade mechanisms. Indication of religious belief and practices of the people is also gathered from these seals.

Ancient Depictions

The Pashupati Seal is considered to be one of the ancient depictions of the Hindu god Shiva. Pashupati means `lord of animals, and it is one of the epithets of Shiva or probably Rudra. These are connected with asceticism, yoga and linga and regarded as the lord of animals. The seal had been discovered in 1928-29, Block 1, Southern area of the DK-G vicinity of Mohenjo-Daro.

It had been located at a depth of 3.9 meters beneath the surface. The excavation had been carried out by Ernest J. H. Mackay at Mohenjo-Daro. He had dated the seal to the Intermediate 1 Period presently considered to be around 2350-2000 BCE. According to his report of 1937-38, he had numbered the Pashupati Seal as 420, providing it with its alternate name.

Pashupati Seal Initial Report & Analysis

Archaeologist, John Marshall had provided an initial report and analysis of the iconography of the Pashupati Seal. He had served as the Director-General of the Archaeological Survey of India and had headed the excavations of the Indus Valley sites. He perceived the central figure as a male deity with three faces and probably a fourth one facing the back. The figure is seen seated in yogic position on a throne with bangles on both arms along with the headdress. Images of five symbols of the Indus script are seen on both the sides of the headdress.

This is made up of two outward extended curved horns of buffalo style together with two upward jutting points. Towards the centre of the headdress, a sole branch having three pipal leaves is seen. Seven bangles on the left arm and six on the right are seen where the hands have been placed on the knees. The heels are positioned together beneath the groin while the feet are seen projecting away from the edge of the throne. Carvings at the feet of the throne are similar to those of the hoof of a bovine, seen on the bull and the unicorn seals. On the back of the seal, a grooved and perforated boss is seen.

Legend & Art – Strength & Beauty

These animals have stirred plenty of legend and art with their strength and beauty. Horns could be connected with power and virility since the finest bulls tend to have the biggest and the most splendid horns. In truth, powdered horns of animals have been prescribed and consumed in some area of Asian societies, illegally.

The Indus Valley unicorn seals may have been examples of the ancient myths with regards to strange and supernatural horned animals. The horned idol on the Pashupati Seal could be interpreted as Bada Dev or Mahadev, the main idol of several tribal societies. It is observed that the meditating yogi is heavily decorated with jewellery and his arms are totally covered with bangles. These were the features which the dokra craft utilised in the tribes of Chhattisgarh.

Pashupati Seal, Utilised as Modern Identity Cards

Several seals have been found from the sites generally made of steatite and some of agate, chert, copper, terracotta and faience. These depicted beautiful images of animals like unicorn bull, tiger, elephant, rhinoceros, bison, buffalo goat and much more. The main intention of the same could be commercial. They were also utilised as amulets worn by the person or probably as modern identity cards. The standard size of the Pashupati Seal was 2 x 2 square inches.

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Archaeologists in Peru find remains of 227 sacrificed children

history mystery

Skeletal Remain of Children – Sacrificial Site in Peru

Archaeologists have located skeletal remains of around 227 children along the coastal desert area, north of Lima, Peru. They had excavated the site utilised by the pre-Columbian Chimu culture which is said to be one of the massive discovery of child slaughter. According to Adina reports, the remains of the children date back between 13th to the 15th centuries.This sacrificial site had been located near Huanchaco, which is a tourist beach side spot north of Lima.

This location was considered to be one of the ports preferred by the pre-Colombian Chimu culture, a society which existed around the year 900. It was located towards the northern coast of Peru till they were defeated by the Inca in the 15th century. It is believed that these children had been slain and buried there, some hundreds of years ago.

It could have been a huge ritual sacrifice administered on these children. As per investigators excavating the site, this seemed to be one of the biggest burials ground of children. Chief archaeologist Feren Castillo informed news site AFP, `wherever you dig, there was another one’.

Killed as Offerings to God

Castillo is of the belief that the site was significant of adjoining burial grounds wherein huge groups of children had marched to the coast and had eventually been stabbed in the chest one by one. It was found that their chest had been cut open and in some instances, their hearts were missing. They had all been buried in a mass grave.

Experts presumed it to be a likely systematic killing ritual on observing a horizontal cut across the breastbone which according to them could be inflicted on the children to remove the heart The archaeologist believed that the children at Huanchaco could be in the age group of 4 and 14 years and some of the bodies had traces of skin and hair when their remains were discovered.

Taking into consideration, the location of the site and the indication of the bodies buried during wet weather, Castillo was of the opinion that the children could have been killed as offerings to the gods, controlling the El Nino phenomenon. This was a biannual climate cycle which would end in catastrophic storms with hurricanes in South America.

Slaughtered to Appease El Nino Event

El Nino was a weather pattern wherein the areas of the Pacific seemed to get warmer occasionally. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration mentioned on its website, `the warmer tropical Pacific waters cause changes to the global atmospheric circulation, causing a wide range of changes to global weather.

When the Pacific Ocean would get warm significantly, due to the weather occurrence, it would have an overwhelming effect in the region. The children could have been slaughtered and sacrificed to appease the El Nino event during wet climate. This ghastly site is in the proximity of the UNESCO world heritage site of Chan Chan.

Experts in Chile mentioned in a separate project have revealed new insights on how the Inca civilization utilised `trophy heads’ in maintaining power over captured people. At its pinnacle, in the 16th century, the Inca Empire covered present day Peru together with areas of Bolivia, Ecuador and Chile. More sites have been discovered lately. Huge collection of skulls buried under the streets of present day Mexico City, provide glimpses of a horrific Aztec human sacrifice of the Chimu culture.

The Chimu Culture

This type of weather motivated sacrifice could have taken place at the proximate Chimu site of burial of Huanchaquito. The Chimu culture was very prominent between the years 1200 and 1400, towards the Peruvian coast. This area had been frequently utilised for child sacrifice as spiritual ceremonial. Being one of the most powerful civilisation in Peru, the Chimu civilisation together with its territory expanded towards the coastline of the country till it had been captured in 1475, by the Inca Empire.

Remains of around 140 children were found in 2018. Researchers discovered remains of around 200 massacre llamas in the adjoining areas and it was considered to be the biggest child burial ground in the world. Other areas in Peru have also revealed more secrets. The remains of over 140 children and 200 llamas or alpacas were discovered in April 2018, at a 15th century sacrificial site near Huanchaquito-Las Llamas. According to radiocarbon it reveals that the remains could be from the era of 1450 A.D.

Excavation at Huanchaquito around 2011

According to report, the findings of many Mayan artifacts discovered towards the bottom of Guatemalan lake could have been utilised in ritual animal sacrifice during that era. The excavation had been carried out at Huanchaquito around 2011.

However, the discoveries had been published by National Geographic, last year and this was helpful financially in the investigation of the case. Researchers also came across some footprints which survived the rain and erosion. These footprints resembled those of the children which lead them to their death.

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Cedars of Lebanon- The Cedars of God

Cedars of Lebanon

Cedars of Lebanon – Economy of Ancient Lebanon

In ancient times the cedars of Lebanon seemed to be very famous trees and were considered as the economy of ancient Lebanon. Usually mentioned in the Scripture as cedars of Lebanon, its wood is aromatic and durable and was preferred for building in Iron Age Israel. In the Bible it is mentioned that David utilised it in building his palace (2 Sam 5:11: 1 Chr 17:1) while Solomon made use of it in building the temple and his palace.

The cedars are massive, beautiful trees which grow in mountainous regions at altitudes of 3,300 to 6,500 feet. They are traced in Lebanon, Cyprus and south-central Turkey. The cedar trees produce cones which grow over the branches and reach a height of 100 feet. The trunk grows to 6 feet in diameter. In comparison to the trees of Israel, the cedar is an expansive tree which is very much praised in the Bible.

The Cedars of God: Land in the Midst of Mountain & Sea

The cedars of Lebanon were used from the dense forests of the mountains and beneath were the fertile land in Beqa Valley with natural harbours lined along the coast. Lebanon geography separates the country into various regions. Viewing the map of Lebanon, one observes it as a land in the midst of mountain and sea. This could help in creating international economy reaching to the far flung regions of the world.

Lebanon was positioned in the centre of Syria and Palestine and both the countries profited immensely from the cedars of Lebanon. Lebanon had been placed in an exclusion position to expand its wealth towards eastward along the trade routes as well as the Mediterranean Sea. Hence the history of Lebanon seems to have a diverse and rich history owing to its ease of travel, trade along the land caravan routes as well as the sea-trade routes.

Esh-Shouf Cedar Reserve

The cedars of Lebanon over the years got relentlessly exhausted. In order to refill the forests, the government of Lebanon has been taking great measures in preserving the cedars. The largest Lebanon’s naturereserve is the Esh-Shouf Cedar Reserve which had been established in 1996.It includes oak and juniper forests together with three cedar forests namely, Barouk Maasser Al-Shouf, Ain Zhalta-Bmohary.

The Esh-Shouf Cedar Reserve cedar forests comprises of 25% of all the rest of cedars prevailing in Lebanon. The cedars of Lebanon were transported west towards the coastal port cities after they were chopped from the snow-capped peaks and loaded to Phoenician ships where it was shipped all over the world.

The cedars of God in some cases like the one in the midst of Hiram and Solomon were bundled together on rafts and transported along the coast to scheduled ports. Byblos, Tyre and Sidon were some of the ports of Phoenician where its culture dominated Lebanon creating an impact on ancient Israel in a tremendous way. Its shoreline seems to be rocky towards the north and sandy in the south.

Cedars of Lebanon- Important Religious Significance

The name `Lebanon’ was derived from the snowcapped mountain peaks. Owing to its closeness to the sea, it enabled the growth of great port cities which molded from natural harbors.The Phoenician culture became expert sailors of ancient times who dominated the nautical occupation and activity. Over the years, several people utilised cedar of Lebanon from the forest.

It was used in building ships by the Phoenicians, while the Egyptians utilised the wood to make paper whereas the people like the Romans and Turks misused the natural treasure for the purpose of trade. It holds an important religious significance and on many occasions, a reference of it, has been made in the Bible. The wood was utilised by Solomon to build up Jerusalem while Emperor Hadrian administered them as royal domain which hindered their destructions.

World Heritage Site- Cedars of Lebanon

At present the cedar of God is still being exploited in spite of the attempt to protect them is being done by Queen Victoria. The British soldiers, had cut down the tree inhabited, by misusing it for railroads at the time of the World War One.

Currently the majority of Cedar trees are situated on the Arz Mountains in Lebanon where the site is considered as UNESCO and the forest has been considered as one of the World Heritage site which is well protected and cherished. As one moves eastward from the coast, Lebanon’s diagram tends to change significantly.You get to see the full view of the Lebanese Mountain towering over the horizon.Characteristic of Lebanon is separated by this range with the Anti-Lebanese Mountains further east which was the source of their prized cedars of Lebanon.

Also known as the Mount Lebanon, the Western Mountain Range of Lebanon are said to be the highest and most rocky of the two ranges wherein from this range, the most popular timber had been collected. These trees were utilised by the Phoenicians to construct their extensive navy and also to trade and build their massive evolution.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Denisovans: Jawbone Reveals Ancient Human Denisovan Lived in oxygen-starved Himalayas

Denisovans Jawbone

Ancient Human Ancestor – Denisovans

Denisovans, ancient human ancestor, has been revealed by archaeologists, dating 160,000 years back. This is said to be oxygen starved Tibetan Plateau, 11,000 feet above sea level. Research on the genes of the species located in some present people like the Sherpas showed signs of them thriving at high altitudes.

Earlier, it wasunknow how some of the Tibetan natives flourished at these altitudes when the level of the oxygen seemed to be 40% less than that of the sea level.Archaeologists who discovered half a mandible/jaw bone state that the presently non-existent race existed around 100,000 years at a high altitude region.
It was informed that the bone had been located in the year 1980 in a cave in China by a monk before it had been evaluated by researchers. It has been considered to be one of the oldest hominin fossil ever located in the Himalayan region at such a high altitude.

Survive At High Altitudes

It was assumed that Denisovans have interbred with primitive Homo sapiens. Hence their genes are the reason why some types of humans tend to be capable of living at high altitudes.Denisovans DNA samples have been discovered all over Asia stretching right up to Australia and presently in Melanesia.

The Denisovans together with their sub-species, the Neanderthals have been considered to have multiplied with the ancestors of the present generation. The present day Sherpas and Tibetans seemed to have inherited the Denisovans genetic deviations which enabled them to survive at high altitudes.

The cave where the jawbone had been unearthed, Baishiva Karst Cave is said to be situated at an altitude of 10,760 feet. The researchers have not been successful in locating any DNA traces in the fossil though managed to remove proteins from one of the molars.

Archaic Hominins

On scrutiny, it was believed to be that of Denisovans. The research led by Dr Dongiu Zhang, co-leading the research, of Lanzhou University from Gansu province of China had stated that `Archaic hominins occupied the Tibetan plateau in the Middle Pleistocene and had successfully adapted to high altitude, low oxygen environments long before the regional arrival of modern Homo sapiens.

As per the research reported in Nature, the jawbone which was well maintained is said to be tough with very big molars, structures shared by Neanderthals and Denisovans. Researchers were able to date the fossil to at least 160,000 year old, due to the covering of heavy carbonate crust layer. Ancient specimen from Denisova Cave in Siberia seemed to be of the same time era.

Function Related to Fuel-Efficient Car 

Initially a local monk had discovered the Denisovans jawbone in 1980 and had donated the same to the sixth Gung-Thang Living Buddha, a Buddhist Lama who had then passed it to Lanzhou University.

The extinct species of humans, the Denisovans seemed to have lived in Siberia and as far as Southeast Asia. Though the remains of these early humans had only been exposed at one site at the Denisova Cave in the Altai Mountains in Siberia, the DNA analysis indicated that they were widespread.

DNA from the early humans identified in the genomes of modern humans over a large area in Asia, indicated that they once covered an enormous range. According to research it has been revealed that they had established a function related to that of a fuel-efficient car. Their strengths seemed to get more mileage inspite of less oxygen in comparison to that of an average person.

The Sherpas seem to have mitochondria which are miniature rod similar to power plants in cells which have a tendency of being extra-efficient while utilising oxygen. Though the red blood cell count tends to increase at high altitude, it stays below the level where the blood thickens, causing a strain on the heart, resulting in altitude sickness.

Temporary Shelter/Permanent Settlement

Ivory beads and bone were also found in the Denisova Cave with the same deposit layers as the Denisovan fossils, giving some insights on their sophisticated tools and jewellery. DNA analysis in 2010, on a segment of a fifth digit finger bone belonging to a young female, revealed that they belonged to species linked to, though different from the Neanderthals.

Later research indicated that the ancient species of human differed from the Neanderthals towards 470,000 and 190,000 years back. It has puzzled the anthropologist in thinking that the cave could have been utilised as a temporary shelter for these Denisovans or could have been made as a permanent settlement.

A paleoanthropologist at the Natural History Museum in London, Chris Stringer though not involved in the study described the `first use’ of the protein analysis in identifying the Denisovan fossil as a `notable landmark’. In an email to Gizmodo, he explained that it was early days for the research and that they should be alert while the data from the fossil and the relative samples are spare.

Shared Common Ancestor with Neanderthals

However the technique seems promising for charting relationships of fossil hominins where DNA does not seem to be preserved. For Katerina Douka an archaeologist at the University of Oxford not connected with the study, the most exciting aspect of the of the revelation was the location of the new site which was over 3,000 meters above sea level and not the presence of Denisovans outside Siberia. Denisovans during this particular geological era at this altitude seems astonishing according to her.

The discovery fits well with her earlier research. Douka’s team in that study had dated the oldest Denisovan fossils located in Denisova cave to the same era indicated by the Tibetan Plateau fossil.Scientists have found over the past decade, Denisovans teeth together with bone remains, comprising of a portion of a skull. It seems that the Denisovans lived in the cave at intervals from 287,000 years back to 50,000 years ago.

From the DNA analysed, it is presumed that the Denisovans shared a common ancestor with Neanderthals some 400,000 years back. They multiplied with Neanderthals with our species. Presently we find that the people in East Asia, the Pacific Islands, Australia and America tend to have some DNA of the Denisovans.

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

The Underwater Ruins of Japan: Yonaguni Monument

The Underwater Ruins of Japan: Yonaguni Monument

Immersed Ruins – Southern Coast - Japan

An immersed ruins estimated to be about 10,000 years old is said to be lying towards the southern coast of Yonaguni, in Japan. There is a lot of controversy doing the rounds on the immersed ruins between experts who were of the opinion that it was man-made while more conservative scientists debate that it had been carved by natural phenomena.

This overwhelming site had been identified by a driver who had ventured as far off the Okinawa shore in the year 1995 and had been spell bound on discovering the sunken planning of the monolithic blocks. It seemed as if the immersed ruins had been terraced into the side of a mountain. This amazing discovery sparked immediate argument drawing many diving archaeologists, curious hobbyists and media who were unable to arrive at a valid conclusion of its existence.

Several attempts were also made later in the year to assemble data and map out the structure. These discoveries exposed several astonishing things inclusive of what seems to be huge arch or gateway of enormous blocks. These appeared to be fitted together precisely, at right angled joins, carvings and the same seemed similar to stairways.

This gave rise to crossroads and paved streets with grand staircases giving way to plazas surrounded by couple of towering landscapes similar to pylons.

Peculiar Formation

The teams on utilising grid search patterns, discovered five sub surface archaeological sites near three offshore islands as they drifted out from the south coast of Okinawa. It is said that the locations of the immersed ruins tend to differ at depths from 100 to only 20 feet.

Supporters of view of the site stating that they are man-made point out features like two round holes which are said to be around two feet wide, and a straight row of smaller hole which seem to be attempts of splitting off a portion of the rock through wedges, similar to ancient quarries. Marine seismologist of the University of the Rykyus, Professor Masaaki Kimura, pointed out various signs like plus sign and V shape which seems to indicate that humans had worked and which could have been made by wedge-like tools considered to be known as kusabi.

Though most of the features at Yonaguni have been seen in natural sandstone formations all over the world, the awareness of the various peculiar formations together with 90 degree angles in such a manners seems strange.

Tectonic Movement

Inspite of the several features presented at Yonaguni, there are yet some group of scientists who had researched the formation and are still obstinate on the natural formation of the large blocks, could be the outcome of tectonic movement together with the other natural occurrences.

One of the scientist, Geologist Robert Schoch of Boston University is of the opinion that the structures had been formed naturally, acknowledging that they could have been utilised or modified by humans ages ago. Moreover he also pointed out that the site seemed to be situated in an earthquake prone region which fractured the rocks regularly.

John Anthony West was also of the opinion that the so-called walls were natural horizontal platforms which fell in a vertical position when rock beneath seemed to wear away while the alleged roads tend to be channels in the rock. The other instances of natural formation having flat faces together with sharp and straight edges are said to be the basalt columns of the Giant’s Causeway and the natural staircase formation on Old Rag Mountain.

Search On For More Evidence

Several scientist continue to prevail in their searches for more evidence of their man-made nature, presuming that the stone structures could be the remnants of an ancient city which could have been existed 10,000 years back. This could have been there when the level of the sea had been much lower that what it is at present.

Graham Hancock an explorer and researcher had mentioned in his named `Underworld’, wrote that “It was the submerged structures of Japan that first awakened me to the possibility that an underworld in history, unrecognized by archaeologist, could lie concealed and forgotten beneath the sea”.

 He draws the similarity between Yonaguni together with the other immersed ruins found below the waters of Lake Titicaca and in Dwarka. This is, off the coast of India offering additional proof in the existence of a huge underwater world comprising of structures extending back to the vaguest chapters of human ancient times.

Presuming the structures of Yonaguni are the remains of a prehistoric city, one possibility of the prehistoric inhabitants of Japan could be called the Jomon. They existed from 12,000 BC to around 300 BC and established a stylish culture.

Investigations are still on with the immersed ruins by scientists which has overwhelmed them on how they relate to the ancient past and to solve the mysteries with regards to their origins.

Monday, May 20, 2019

5 Amazing Medical Techniques

Balloon Angioplasty
No one can dispute that science and medicine do not mix when you consider some of the amazing medical advancements made in the last 40 years. Consider for example the development of balloon angioplasty, a minimally invasive surgical technique where a medical balloon is guided through a major heart blood vessel then inflated to allow the blood vessel, previously restricted by plaque, to pump more blood.

Balloon Angioplasty 

Established in the late 1970s, balloon angioplasty, together with a small wire mesh tube called a stent, has led to thousands of heart patients getting the procedure to skip bypass heart surgery.

Not only has balloon angioplasty become a very popular and potentially life-saving surgery for heart patients, but in 2005, the FDA approved the same general idea for sinus sufferer's called balloon sinuplasty.

Medical Supplies 

Of course, with medical advancements come risks. That's why surgeons and their staff wear medical masks designed to reflect debris during laser surgery, such as those from a surgical supply store. USA Medical and Surgical Supplies is an all-inclusive medical supply store, which helps doctors or hospitals stock and re-stock medical supplies quickly. They carry products that the medical field has developed to help their patients in so many different ways.

Laser Surgery 

Another highly popular device is the use of a laser for surgery. A laser, which stands for light amplification by stimulated emission of radiation, is a device designed to put all the phases of a light's electric waves into a similar and narrow pattern so that the laser produces a very bright, very narrow, and precise beam of light.

Again, cardiologists were the first to use a laser for surgery, dating as far back as 1960, but it was an ophthalmologist, Dr. Gholam Peyman, who patented the use of lasers to correct eye problems that people are most familiar with.

According to Stanford University, laser surgery today, in addition to vision correction and the removal of cataracts, are used to remove tumors, seal blood vessels during surgery, and to remove warts, tattoos, birthmarks, and wrinkles.

Organ Transplants 

Another major advancement in the scientific/medical world is, of course, organ transplants. According to the United Network for Organ Sharing, the first successful kidney transplant took place way back in 1954, but liver, lung, heart, pancreas, and intestines have been transplanted, particularly since advancements in the late 1980s. These transplants later produced many ways to reduce the rejection of transplanted organs.

One of the problems, of course, is that you need a donor in order to transplant an organ. The majority of these come from accident victims that have consented with their state to be an organ donor in case of catastrophic events. Although you can sign up to be an organ donor in all 50 states, according to organdonor.gov statistics, only three out of every one thousand people die in a way that allows their organs to be used by someone else.

This brings up the future possibility of cloning. Although it seems like a brave new world with many ethical questions to answer, it seems inevitable that cloning, using stem cells to replace organs, will eventually be possible. It may be far into the future, but many forward-thinking scientists believe cloning at least some organs may be possible in the future.

Bionic Eye 

There could be many candidates for number five on our list, but we'll give the nod to the bionic eye.
A bionic eye, otherwise known as a visual prosthesis, is an electrical device that provides artificial vision to people who are currently blind but could previously see. Bionic eyes work by electrically stimulating parts of the brain that show flashes of light, called phospheres, which are flashes of light emitted through the brain, not through natural light. Think, for example, of seeing colors with your eyes closed within your mind.

Currently, a bionic eye provides a very limited image that, through training, allows a blind person with previous sight to be able to determine basic vision tasks such as identifying a person, object or a doorway, But in the future, the need for guide dogs and limited sight may be the prognosis for everyone.

Ancient 3,000 Year Old Tablet Suggests Biblical King Was Real

Mesha Stele

Meshe Stele – One Metre Tall Black Basalt Stone

According to researcher doing a study, on a 2,800 year old inscribed stone, considered King Balak to be a biblical King of the ancient Hebrews. The Mesha Stele of black basalt stone is said to be one meter tall dating back to the second half of the 9th century BC.

This piece of stone was discovered intact in August 1868, by Frederick Augustus Klien who was an Anglican missionary. It was discovered at an ancient site in Dibon, presently Dhiban, Jordan.The Mesha Stele also considered as the Moabite Stone has inscription which dates way back to 840 B.C.

Mesha Stele, the ancient tablet has labelled several conflicts and conquests which had occurred during that period. Surprisingly, the Mesha Stele is said to be the longest Iron Age inscription ever created in the region and establishes the main indication for the Moabite language and is considered a `corner-stone of Semitic epigraphy’.

King Balak – Main Character in Biblical Parable – Book of Numbers 

Though the inscriptions have been found to be battered and broken, it is said that line 31, earlier considered to refer to ‘House of David’ could in fact be describing King Balak. Three consonants had been observed by the group of researchers from Tel Aviv University, the first be in Hebrew letter `beth’ which sounds like `B’.

Mesha Stele
The researchers though not sure think it likely that the inscription on the 31st line seen towards the bottom of the Stele could be referring to King Balak. The latest analysis relating to the stone recommends that Balak to be the main character in a biblical parable in the book of Numbers could be stated as challenge to Mesha.

Name with Three Characters 

Israel Finkelstein from Tel Aviv University informed NewsWeek that they have been dealing with a name having three characters starting with `B’. They are aware that Balak was the king of Moab and had ruled from a location in southern Moab, which has been described in the Stele.

However, he has acknowledged that he was not certain and that eventually the reconstruction of the name `Balak’ is incidental.The writers had researched the novel high resolution images of the tablet of the Stele. According to the latest analysis it was mentioned that Balak, being the key personality in a biblical parable in the book of Numbers, Chapter 22 -24, could be considered in the Stele as a rival to Mesha over Moab for power.

According to the story he had asked the prophet Balaam to curse the people of Israel. In Line 31, the seat had asked the prophet Balaam to curse the people of Israel. In Line 31, the seat of the king was at Horonaim. It is a place which has been mentioned four times in the Bible in connection with the Moabite territory south of the Arnon River.

Historical Personality 

The authors have stated that Balak could be a historical personality like Balaam who earlier to the discovery of the Deir Alla inscription had been considered to be an invented figure. The historians have not found any other reference of Balak, outside the Bible and the Stele. The authors in their papers have stated that the new images of Mesha Stele shows that the understanding `House of David’ that has been accepted by several scholars for over two decades, is no more a possibility.

The interpretation `Balak’ instead of `House of David’ eliminates the likelihood that Judahreigned over Moab. This tends to portray Balak as a historical figure according to Mr. Finkelstein. The Mesha Stele is said to be 3 foot-tall stone of black basalt dating back to the second half of the 9th century BC.

Displayed at Louvre – Paris 

The relic was revealed 150 years ago in the ruins of the biblical town of Dibon in Moab, which is presently Jordon and had been on display at the Louvre in Paris. Many westerners after learning about it made attempts to purchase it from the Bedouins who were the owners of the stone.

Due to political relationships, negotiations were ruined between the Bedouins and the prospective buyers, Prussia (North Germany, France and England with an Ottoman official who was unpopular with the Bedouins. This resulted in the Bedouins smashing the Mesha Stele into pieces by heating it up and dousing it with cold water.

Several parts of the ancient stone still tend to be missing. Archaeologists thereafter have been making attempts in reassembling the smashed tablet.This has proved to be wealth of information with regards to the history of ancient Israel. Moreover it has also been a constant source of debate on the truth of the Bible.

In the text there is a mention which dates back to the second half of the 9th century B.C.E. that Moabite King Mesha takes pride in defeating the northern Kingdom of Israel and its deity.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Ranavalona I – Mad Queen of Madagascar

Ranavalona I – Mad Queen of Madagascar
Ranavalona considered as the Mad Queen of Madagascar was born in 1788 in Madagascar. She was known to belong to humbleparents. Ranavalona I was also known as Ramavo and Ranavalo-Manjakal I lived a life of shame when her father got to know about a murder plot of the forthcoming king, Andrianampoinimerina. He immediately brought it to the notice of his master and the plot was averted. As a reward for saving his life, his master adopted Ramavo as his very own daughter.

Moreover he also arranged to marry her to his son, Radama. When Radama had been crowned King Radama I, Ranavalona was his first wife out of his twelve wives.To secure the line of succession it was essential to have an heir to the throne.

While at this position, her children would be the natural heirs to the throne. But King Radama and Ranavalona did not have any children. This became an issue when the King died without having any children. Their marriage was said to be a very unhappy affair, one which had failed to have an heir to the throne.

Brutal & Cruel 

According to the law, the next in succession to the throne was Rakotobe who was the son of the elder sister of Radama. He was known to be well educated. But when her husband died, Ranavalona played a trick and took over the throne for herself.

It was said that though she seemed to be out of focus from the public during the last few years of Radama’s reign. During that time, she had been busy scheming to take hold of the throne. She wanted to take over the control of the throne and with the assistance of some influential and wealthy supporters she had eventually taken control.

She was considered to be tough and cruel. Thereafter her reign of terror began. For three decades, Queen Ranavalona had reigned over the island nation of Madagascar off the coast of South Africa. She was known to be very brutal and had been the cause of death of millions of people.

Not Feeble & Ignorant Woman 

When she had captured the throne, at her coronation she made it known that she was not a woman to be toyed with. She stated “Never say, she is only a feeble and ignorant woman, how can she rule a vast empire? I will rule here to the good fortune of my people and the glory of my name. I will worship no gods, only those of my ancestors.

The ocean shall be the boundary of realm and I will not cede the thickness of one hair of my realm”. Her earliest actions were detecting and killing possible threats to her throne. It started by capturing and executing members of the husband’s family. Probably she could have been taking revenge for all that her husband had done earlier to her very own family.

During her initial time of her reign, Ranavalona who was considered to be a cold-blooded Queen had stated that her country was independent. She had all intention of keeping it that way, not permitting any outsiders to sabotage the system of culture and laws.

This was not accepted by the large number of Christian missionaries who had been visiting the island for a long time. Ranavalona had given a warning for those influencing on her subjects.

Probably she was doubtful about her power being sufficient enough to guarantee that her subjects would be obedient. Hence in 1835, she officially prohibited Christianity on that island. Finally her obsession extended to the other foreign interference, specially the French and the British.

The focus of Ranavalona’s years of reign was mostly on foreign intrusions. She was ruthless to the core and her subjects had to bear the brunt of her cruelty for the most unimportant crimes. Her act of brutally comprised of:

Hanging – The guilty were left hanging for several days over steep cliffs, where their relatives were forced to watch them till their ropes would fray out and the guilty would meet their end with a plunging death.

Boiling, burning, burying alive. Thousands of criminals were the victims of this brutality which was observed by friends and relative as a sign of warning from Ranavalona.

Beheading – As a means of another warning to those intending to invade the island, Ranavalona had executed heads of captured French soldiers which had been skewered along the beach of the island.
Poisoning – Ranavalona aimlessly carried out loyalty test by ordering poison on some subjects due to which only few of them survived.

Brutal forced labour- Ranavolona seemed whimsical and would unexpectedly make unrealistic construction projects utilising thousands of natives or captured prisoners.

Ranavalona due to her cruelty to her subjects, had been given the title of the `World’s Most Murderous Woman. When she died in 1861, Madagascar had a nine-month long mourning period for her death.

Thursday, March 28, 2019

Tutankhamum’s Tomb – Greatest Discovery

Tutankhamum’s Tomb

Tutankhamum’s Tomb – Greatest Discovery - 1922

Tutankhamum’s tomb is considered probably the greatest discovery during the period of 1922. The discovery was carried out by Howard Carter together with his team. Howard Carter, a British Egyptologist had been evacuating a royal ground towards the early 20th century. It was situated on the west bank of the ancient city of Thebes.

He had been short on funds in managing his archaeological excavations. He then made one more request to his financial supporter who was the fifth Earl of Carnarvon. Lord Carnarvon permitted him one more year to support him. Tutankhamum’s tomb eventually came to light with his final attempt in excavation. At the onset of his excavation, Carter observed first of the twelve steps of the entrance leading to the Tutankhamun’s tomb.

 He then sent a telegram to Carnarvon in England in order to open the tomb together. Carnarvon immediately left for Egypt on 26th November, 1922 and together they began excavating the entrance of the antechamber to proceed with their findings. Carter stated that initially they found nothing. The hot air escaping from the chamber caused the flame of the candle to flicker though later on their eyes got accustomed to the chamber light. Gradually they began to see through the mist - statues, strange animals and gold. Lay in Case of Three Golden Caskets

Tutankhamum’s tomb was found intact which belonged to an Egyptian pharaoh of the 18th Dynasty. It was the only tomb of a pharaoh which had not been touched and identified in the Valley of the Kings. It had been found with artefacts comprising of statues and artwork of such amazing quantity that it took almost ten years to record them.

 In Tutankhamen’s tomb, they found not one casket but three caskets, which lay within a case of three golden caskets containing the body of the king. The outer part of the caskets had been crafted in wood with gold coverings together with several semiprecious stones. These were lapis lazuli and turquoise. However the inner caskets had solid gold.

 Carter in his discovery notes had mentioned that it had been covered with thick black pitch like layer which extended from the hands down to the ankles. This could probably be the anointing liquid which had been poured over the casket at the time of the burial ceremony. This had been lavishly poured in great abundance.

 The image of him has been portrayed like that of a god who is believed to have gold skin, bones of silver and hair of lapis lazuli. The king here has been shown in his divine form. He is portrayed holding the crook and flail in his crossed arm, which are symbols of the rights of the king to rule.

Ignited Global Spark


According to an art critic, Alastair Sooke commented that the 1922 discovery had ignited a global spark for ancient Egypt -`A craze for Egyptian exoticism convulsed the West, infiltrating both high and low culture across the fields of music, fine art, fashion, film and furniture design’ Carter thereafter had been a popular person conducting tours in America and delivering lectures with regards to his discovery.

Tutankhamum’s rule lasted for almost ten years from 1336 – 1327 BCE. Howard Carter and Lord Carnarvon had found Tutankhamum’s tomb which was untouched in November 1922 in the Valley of Kings. It is said that the mummified body of the king was surrounded by precious goods.

 This was discovered in his golden coffin after his burial chambers had been officially opened in the presence of Egyptologists and government officials on 17th February 1923.According to the discovery, it was observed that Tutankhamum had died when he was around 18 years of age. His end led several scholars to wonder about his death.

Tomb Revealed Numerous Perceptions

However, it is not clear, precisely when he died. His body revealed damage at several stages which could have occurred before or immediately after his death, during the hasty mummification development, in the tomb which could be due to the chemical reaction taking place in the coffin or probably during extraction from the coffin.

There are various damages envisaged on the chest and legs of Tutankhaman which indicates an accident, probably hunting or a chariot accident. Perhaps it could also be death on the battlefield. Still others state that Tutankhamu could have been murdered. Tutankhamun had been nine years of age when he was crowned the king of Egypt during the period of the 18th Dynasty of the New Kingdom. If the archaeologist Howard Carter had not discovered Tutankhamum’s tomb, we would have lost his history and would be ignorant of the knowledge of what laid in his tomb.

 His intact tomb revealed a wealth of objects providing us with numerous perceptions during his period of ancient history of Egypt. Overall, it took Carter and his team almost ten years to document and clear Tutankhamum’s tomb. After he had completed his work in 1932 at the tomb, Carter started writing a six-volume book. Unfortunately Carter died without completing it on March 2 1939 at his home in Kensington, London.

Saturday, February 23, 2019

Science Mystery: Magnetic North is on the Move

Science Mystery: Magnetic North is on the Move

World Magnetic Model

The northern magnetic pole of the Earth is said to be shifting towards Siberia away from the Canadian Artic. This shifting has compelled the scientists of NCEI to update the mid-cycle of World Magnetic Model– WMM. An official new magnetic model of the world is used for its navigation system which has been moving at a rate of about 50 to 60 kilometres per year, according to The Guardian. Essential to warrant precise navigation towards the North Pole, the World Magnetic Model update has moved ahead from a planned 2020 release owing to the present speed of this movement. The north magnetic pole is said to be on the move.

Instead of moving around as it had for ages, the pole had picked up considerable speed and is moving quickly towards Siberia. Funded by the US and UK military, usually an updated version of the World Magnetic Model is released once in five years wherein the last had been released in 2015. Release of the next version is scheduled to be towards the end of 2019.

The military utilises the World Magnetic Model for undersea and aircraft navigation, parachute positioning etc. The other governmental businesses like NASA, the Federal Aviation Administration, U.S. Forest Service and others tend to utilise this technology for the purpose of surveying and mapping, satellite/antenna tracing and air traffic management.

Unexpected Variations in Artic Area

Scientists have released an updated model to precisely present the changes of the magnetic field between 2015 and the present time, owing to the unexpected variations in the Artic area. This unexpected update before the official release of next year’s World Magnetic Model 2020, would warrant innocuous navigation for military application, search, rescue operation together with commercial airlines and others functioning around the North Pole.

 A geophysicist at the British Geological Survey in Edinburgh, Ciaran Beggan commented, `We know from old ship’s logs that in the past 400 years, the north magnetic pole has hung around northern Canada. Till the 1900s, it had moved perhaps tens of kilometres, back and forth. However in the past 50 years it had started to move north and in the past 30 years it started to accelerate away. It went from moving at about five to ten km a year to 50 to 60 km a year currently. It’s now moving rapidly towards Siberia’.

Affecting Navigation 

The World Magnetic Model tends to trail the situations of the magnetic poles of the Earth.Beggan had mentioned that they realised that mainly up around the north magnetic pole, the inaccuracieshad seemed to be great for it to be useful. The drifting pole has the tendency of affecting navigation in the Arctic. Should the GPS fail, the pilots on planes and ships will fall back on compass navigation and would require an updated map for their on-board computers.

The US military, at high altitudes, have named airport runways after their direction with regards to magnetic north and tends to change them when the pole moves. The recent movement of the pole is believed to be due to the formation of a narrow stream which is like the jet stream in the atmosphere, in the liquid outer core of the Earth. The iron-nickel core is said to be so hot that it tends to flow like water – 3,000 km below the surface creating the magnetic field and moving it around the planet.

Weakening of Magnetic Field

Beggan had stated that the north magnetic pole has been caught in this jet and is pushing it rapidly towards Siberia. The south magnetic pole seems to be moving much slower than the north due to the liquid outer core moving differently in the southern hemisphere. The magnetic field of the Earth is growing gradually weaker which is leading the scientist to contemplate that it will ultimately lead the north and the south poles to change places like a bar magnet toppling over.

From the traces of rocks, researchers are aware that this had taken place earlier though not in the past 780,000 years. Daniel Lathrop, a geophysicist at the University of Maryland stated that `it’s not a question of if it’s going to reverse, the question is when it’s going to reverse and such a flip would not be instantaneous, but would take 1,000 or more years to play out’.

Lathrop is of the belief that the flip would take place sooner than later owing to the weakening of the magnetic field, considering that an area in the south Atlantic had already overturned below the surface of the Earth. According to Beggan the rise and the fall in the strength of the magnetic field’s movement seems to be a part of its natural behaviour.

 He said that in the long term, the movement of the north magnetic field would become noticeable since it tends to affect where aurora, namely the northern lights, can be seen. He further commented that the aurora is focussed around the north magnetic pole in a ring enabling the pole to move and the aurora tends to follow it.

Wednesday, February 6, 2019

Archaeologists discover ancient 4,400-year-old tomb decorated with Hieroglyphs in Egypt

Ancient Tomb - 


According to authority a well preserved ancient tomb of a priest Wahtye, has been excavated which dates back to over 4,400 years in the pyramid area of Saqqara, south of the Egyptian capital of Cairo capital. Saqqara had been the burial ground for Memphis the capital of ancient Egypt for over two millennia. To preserve their bodies for afterlife, the ancient Egyptians had preserved humans while the animal mummies had been utilised as religious offerings.

The tomb is said to be adorned with symbols and statues which has led the archaeologists to investigate the site further, for more findings. According to Reuters, Mostafa Waziri, secretary General of the Supreme Council of Antiquities, had informed reporters at the site that the tomb was discovered buried in a crest which had been intact and unharmed. The excavation as per New York Times had started since November.

Tomb – One of a Kind – Last Decades


According to his description, he had stated it as `one of a kind in the last decades’. The tomb belonged to a period during the rule of Neferirkare Kakai, who was the 3rd king of the Fifth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom.The name of the departed, hieroglyphs engraved in the stone over the door of the tomb reveals the title, royal purification priest, royal supervisor together with inspector of the sacred boat. The tomb had only been partially unearthed and the archaeologists are anticipating more finding on excavating the site further. A last layer of debris had been removed from the tomb by the archaeologist who discovered five shafts within. On examination, it was found that one of the shafts was unsealed with nothing in it. However the other four had been sealed and more discoveries were anticipated on uncovering the shafts.

Tomb is Unique 

The rectangular gallery of the tomb is said to be ten metres long, thirty three metres wide and less than three metres high. It is covered in painted reliefs, sculptures together with inscriptions. Waziri had stated that the tomb is unique due to its statues and its almost flawless condition.Itportrays Wahtye together with his wife, Weret Ptah, his mother Merit Meen and the daily scenes comprising of hunting, making offerings, sailing and developing goods like pottery and obituary furniture. One will find big painted statues of the priest and his family in 18 niches and 26 smaller niches towards the floor have statues of an unidentified person in a standing or seated position with his legs crossed.

Rock-Cut Tomb Chapel

Besides this, the colour too is intact inspite of being 4,400 years old. Khaled al-Enany, Antiquities Minister had informed the audience of guests who had been invited inclusive of AFP reporters, that they would be announcing the latest discovery of 2018, a new discovery of a private tomb.An Egyptologist, Aidan Dodson at the University of Bristol had mentioned in an email that `what we have is a rock-cut tomb-chapel. What has been exposed so far is the public part of the complex, where family, friends and priests could come and leave offerings for the dead’. Dodsonwas not involved in this project. He had commented that the number as well as the variety of the statues seems unusual. He had also added that the rest of the decoration comprises of scenes intended to mystically construct an atmosphere for the next world especially the creation of food to sustain the dead for eternity and their acceptance of offerings.

Home to Well-Know Djoser Pyramid 

The Saqqara catacomb is also a home to the well-knownDjoser pyramid which is 4,600 years old structure that tends to overlook the site. It is considered to be the first tombstone of Egypt. The tomb had been erected by Imhotep, the master architect for Pharaoh Djoser which was 62 metres tall initially. It is said to be the oldest building in the world which is built completely of stone.

The ancient tomb had been a very famous tourist attraction for years enticing visitors in indulging in rare glimpses of this amazing site which was inhabited by people living there thousands of years ago. Moreover it is also considered as a UNESCO World Heritage site and home to several other tombs.

However inspite of its interesting site tourists have stopped visiting this country due to fear of violence created against the former Egyptian President, Hosni Mubarak. With the continuous political issues together with series of terrorists attacking tourist areas, international travellers have been discouraged from visiting this country.

A dozen of ancient unearthinghas been done by Egypt during this year. With these discoveries, Egypt expects to enhance its image abroad, reviving interest among tourists. Tourists not long ago used to visit its iconic temples and pyramid but had refrained from visiting this country owing to the 2011 political revolution. Egypt has now made its contribution with its archaeological discoveries, to international media and diplomats with the hope of gaining more visitors in the country.

Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Scientists Proposed a Nuclear 'Tunnelbot' to Hunt Life in Europa's Hidden Ocean


Nuclear Powered `Tunnelbot’

To produce a path through the thick shell of ice, researchers’ are intending to send a nuclear-powered `tunnelbot’ to Europa to hunt for life. Being the 4th largest of Jupiter’s 53 moons, Europa has been considered as the best choice in the solar system to introduce alien life. Europa, Jupiter’s icy moon is said to be somewhat smaller than Earth’s moon. Europa circles every 3.5 days around Jupiter and is tidally locked similar to the Earth’s moon. In this manner it is on the same side, wherein Europa tends to face Jupiter all the time. It is presumed to have an iron core, a surface ocean of salty water and a rocky mantle resembling the Earth. This ocean unlike on earth is considered to be adequately deep covering the entire surface of Europa. Moreover being away from the sun, the surface of the ocean is said to be globally frozen all over. Specialists are of the opinion that the hidden ocean encircling Europa and warmed by powerful tidal forces owing to the gravity of Jupiter could have favourable conditions for life.

Extra-Terrestrial Life

The plan has been initiated by scientists at NASA. The concept is to drill into the moon with the help of nuclear-powered robot tunnelbot, in an attempt to locate signs of aliens. This effort would provide an opportunity of probing below Jupiter’s moon Europa. According to the researchers, it would give them some insight of any aliens lurking there. The water concealed below Europa seems to be the likely areas for hidden alien life which could be trapped in a crust of ice thereby making it tough to explore. Hence, the researchers’ are set on in drilling through the crust and navigate for extra-terrestrial life. The researchers are of the opinion that the icy crust tends to conceal a kind of liquid water ocean which vents through that crust and could deliver the essential heat and chemical ingredients necessary for life in that particular ocean.


To get some insight below the thick layer of ice, researchers of NASA Glenn Research COMPASS team which is said to be a team of scientists and engineers around the country and engaged in resolving problems for NASA, believe that they can come up with tunnelbot. A meeting of the researchers had been conducted in December with the American Geophysical Union wherein a proposal had been presented for a tunnelbot. The tunnelbot could utilize nuclear power for melting a path through the shell of Europa.

 This would be carrying a cargo which could be helpful in tracing for indications for existing/nonexistent life Researchers are of the opinion that the tunnelbot can be utilized as an advanced nuclear device or some radioactive `general-purpose heat bricks of NASA to create heat and power. However, the radiation could bring about some design challenges. The tunnelbot can move in the ice on the frozen moon, hunting for small lakes with the shell or signs of life in the ice. As it tends to get immersed deeper it would branch out into a fiber optic cable. This could rise to the surface, setting up communication transmit at a depth of 3, 6 and 9 miles.

Mystery & Challenge

Researchers have mentioned that when the tunnelbot reaches the liquid ocean it would arrange cables or launch a device to refrain from falling through and to lock itself in position. At this point of time it is at an initial speculative proposal. The payload to sample Europa’s water and ice or how to get the tunnelbot on the moon has not yet been reckoned out by the researchers. This seems to be a significant mystery and challenge. This plan poses as an amazing insight into the future robotic mission to Europa. Moreover, ultimately it would also explore to see if the distant moon tends to have any indication of life.

American Geophysical Union

The researchers had mentioned in a proposal at the 2018 meeting of the American Geophysical Union that they had performed a concept study for a nuclear powered tunnelbot which would navigate through the ice shell reaching the ocean. The tunnelbot would assess the habitability of the ice shell together with the underlying ocean. The researchers have observed that there would be some issues with the plan. It comprises of how the tunnelbot tends to get all the way to that part of the world to be navigated. They have noted on `how initial deployment on the surface would occur, though not addressed and seems to be a challenge for further progress.

Two Prospects

Based on this, they have considered two prospects, one which could be driven by a nuclear reactor while the other through heat source bricks. Both utilize heat produced from these sources for melting through ice sources. However another issue also arises from embedding deep in the world. It would be complex for message to be sent through the ice. This means that the robot would be carrying cable that could send messages to and fro, to Earth. Moreover, researchers would also have to safeguard that the tunnelbot would have to leave a cable or even float on reaching the ocean ensuring that the cable does not touch the water while digging through the ice.

Preparing Two Analyses

According to Andrew Dombard associate professor of Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago, thickness of the ice is likely to be between 2 and 30 kilometres. This could be a main hurdle for anyone to overcome to explore these areas and have some insight of bio-signature representative of life on Europa.

Mr Dombard together with his colleagues had come up with a solution and believed that a nuclear powered tunnelbot would be the best solution for this plan. Mr Dombard had commented that they were not worried of how the tunnelbot would get to Europa or get deployed in the ice. They had presumed that it would get there and hence focused on its operation of descent to the ocean. The space agency has stated that it is preparing two analyses, comprising of one which would be landing on the surface exploring the distant moon within the next year.