9 Mysterious Discoveries Science Can’t Fully Explain
9. Medieval Porpoise Burial
Off the coast of Normandy, lies Guernsey, home to a monastic retreat and the cause of many wars in medieval times. Archaeologists were excavating the site when they came across a grave. Quite to everyone’s surprise, it was the remains of a porpoise. Why would the monks here have given the porpoise such a burial?
8. Ghar Dalam
According to archaeological evidence, our ancestors were present on the Mediterranean island of Malta roughly 2,000 years before the Great Pyramids and Stonehenge were built. I love Malta! As soon as all this craziness is over, it is definitely at the top of my travel list! It appears as though humans first set foot on the Maltese archipelago around 5200 B.C. — over 7,000 years ago — when the islands were still connected to mainland Italy.
Signs of early human’s presence dating back at least this far were found in Ghar Dalam, or the “Cave of Darkness.”
7. Olmec Colossal Heads
Seventeen stone head sculptures thought to represent Olmec rulers have been found along the Gulf Coast of Mexico and dating back between 1200 and 400 B.C. Discovered in the towns of La Venta and San Lorenzo, the sculptures were each carved from a single block of granite, and they were transported 62 or more miles (100 km) to their current locations.
6. James Ossuary
In 1976, an antiquities collector named Oded Golan acquired a bone box known as the James ossuary, which bears an Aramaic inscription that translates to “James, son of Joseph, brother of Jesus.” To some scholars, the cryptic carving suggests that the ossuary once contained the bones of Jesus of Nazareth’s brother.
5. Spanish Hill
Located in the borough of South Waverly in Pennsylvania, Spanish Hill is a large glacial mound shaped like a sugarloaf, that rises approximately 230 feet (70 meters) above the nearby Chemung River floodplain and 978 feet (298 meters) above sea level, occupying a surface area of around 10 acres (4 hectares/40,000 meters2). The unusually shaped hill is noticeably separated from the region’s hill ranges.
4. Cyrus Cylinder
In 1879, an Assyro-British archaeologist named Hormuzd Rassam discovered the Cyrus Cylinder, a clay cylinder dating back to the 6th century B.C., among Babylonian ruins in Mesopotamia, or modern-day Iran. The artifact bears an inscription involving the name of the Achaemenid king Cyrus the Great in Akkadian cuneiform script.
3. Handless Body
Several months after archaeologists excavated the Medieval porpoise burial I told you about, the discovery of a human being’s handless remains at Guernsey deepened an already-existing mystery. The body dates back to around 500 years ago, and is believed to belong to a monk or someone who was drowned. A toe bone belonging to the remains in question was found in a cliff edge, roughly 33 feet (10 meters) from where the porpoise was discovered.
2. SKULL 5
A 1.8-million-year-old skull that was discovered at the Dmanisi archaeological site in Georgia during the early 2000s qualifies as the most complete jaw and cranium from one of early human history’s significant turning points.
1. CALICO EARLY MAN SITE
As things currently stand, the earliest reliable scientific evidence of humans in North America dates back roughly 15,000 years. But the questions of “who got here first” and “when” have been challenged numerous times amid discoveries of evidence thought to be left behind by suspected earlier arrivals. One such example can be found at the Calico Early Man Site in the central Mojave Desert outside Barstow, California.