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8 Most Bizarre Historical Findings of All Time
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Most bizarre historical findings of all time. These archeological discoveries turned out to be the weirdest artifacts ever found, dating back millions of years.
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Some years ago, a pair of amateur archeologists using metal detectors found four mysterious golden spirals in Boeslunde, Denmark. These tiny, tightly-wound curls measured about an inch in length. The find prompted a larger archeological operation that ultimately led to the discovery of around 2,000 similar curls, totaling over half a pound of solid gold. The find dates from the Bronze Age, around 900 BC. The problem is that no one really knows what the spirals were used for.
The case of the London hammer is quite puzzling. In the mid-1930s Max Hahn and his wife, while taking a walk alongside Red Creek, found a rock with some wood embedded in it and decided to take it home. Ten years later, their son opened the rock only to find a hammerhead within. The only problem was that the rock was subsequently found to be 400 million years old. The obvious question that emerged was how could a tool made of wood and iron be found in a rock that pre-dates human evolution by millions of years? One theory was that soluble minerals in the limestone had petrified around the tool forming a concretion. While the rock itself was indeed millions of years old, the minerals that petrified around the tool weren’t. Still, carbon dating on the hammerhead proved inconclusive and it hasn’t rusted at all since it was found.
The Antikythera mechanism is undoubtedly incredibly complex, considering the fact that it’s at least 2,000 years old. Found in the wreckage of a Greek cargo ship at the beginning of the 20th century, the clockwork mechanism was composed of numerous bronze gears and featured various faint inscriptions on its outer casing. The mechanism could predict astronomical positions and eclipses decades in advance. It pre-dates any similar device by at least 1,000 years and nobody knows when or why this technology was lost in ancient times.
In 1928, Peruvian archeologist Julio Tello found some mysterious things on the peninsula of Paracas.
This bird-shaped artifact dates back to around 200 BC and was found in Saqqara, Egypt. Nobody knows the purpose of the Saqqara Bird but the more conventional theories suggest it might have been a child’s toy, a weather vane or a decorative piece placed on the masts of boats during ceremonies. Yet, others, most notably Egyptian archeologist and physician Khalil Messiha, put forward claims that ancient Egyptians had actually developed the first aircraft known to man. The sycamore wood bird supposedly represents a smaller version of a monoplane and, Khalil added, that a horizontal tailplane from the artifact had been lost. With it, the bird could reportedly function as a glider. It wouldn’t have been uncommon for ancient Egyptians to place miniature versions of their technology in tombs. Most Egyptologists usually reject Khalil’s claims. However, tests conducted by aerodynamics expert Simon Sanderson seem to indicate that Khalil was right all along. He built a replica of the bird with a stabilizing tailplane and factored in conditions similar to Saqqara in a wind tunnel. The bird performed unexpectedly well. Sanderson stated that ‘Over 2,000 years after the ancient Egyptians carved this mysterious bird, modern technology has proved beyond doubt that it could have flown’.
The discovery of the Sea Scrolls is often regarded as one of the most significant finds in modern archeology. These manuscripts were discovered between 1946 and 1956 by archeologists and Bedouin shepherds near the Sea. Nobody knows for sure who wrote the scrolls. Most of the 15,000 ancient text fragments are written in Hebrew and most likely originated from a community that inhabited the West Bank around 2,000 years ago.