Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

Yulia PoteriankoNews
These five historical artifacts still puzzle scientists

If you give a modern child a film cassette case or a disk phone, he or she will hardly know what to do with it. And this is even though some 30-40 years have passed since these things were in use. What can we say about artifacts that are hundreds or even thousands of years away?

Medium has collected five archaeological finds, the origin or purpose of which no one has been able to fully understand. An amazing mechanism that has never been found before, a map that was 300 years ahead of its time, evidence of the possible presence of high technology in ancient times – these are among the most mysterious artifacts in history.

Antikythera mechanism

Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

Several bronze gears fixed in pieces of limestone were recovered from an ancient Roman ship that sank off the island of Antikythera around the beginning of the first century BC. This mechanism is considered the world's first analog computer. As the researchers, who examined the artifact from all angles, directly, under X-rays, and in a tomograph, were able to establish, this device was clearly designed to calculate the position of celestial bodies. This was an extremely important task when traveling by sea in ancient times.

It was found that the mechanism was able to do unimaginable things for those times: model the movement of the Sun and Moon very accurately and even show the positions of at least three planets - Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn. But where did this amazing device come from and who made it? Historians have never found anything like it before or since. You can see the miracle at the National Archaeological Museum of Greece.

The bird from Sakkara

Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

In 1898, in the Egyptian village of Saqqara near Cairo, archaeologists excavated a burial ground dating back about 2,200 years, in which they found a small wooden figurine of a bird without a beak. They thought it was unremarkable, so it went to the museum's storerooms away from human eyes. It was there in 1972 that an amateur Egyptologist Khalil Messiha found it. He assumed that this figurine did not actually represent a bird, but a man-made aircraft.

There have even been several attempts to build a model of a glider based on this figurine, but all of them have failed. Therefore, the debate over whether the figurine depicts a bird or an airplane continues to this day. Other popular versions are that it is a ritual object dedicated to the falcon god (Horus or Ra) or an ordinary children's toy. It is exhibited in the Cairo Museum.

London hammer

Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

London, near which this artifact was found, is not in England at all, but in Texas, USA. A farmer there, Max Hahn, and his wife Emma found a rock with something wooden sticking out of it one summer day, either in 1934 or 1936. They brought it home and broke it.

The object inside turned out to be a hammer with a fragment of a handle - this form of tool was common in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. The mysterious thing was that the stone in which it was lying was dated by the archaeologists of the time to the Ordovician period, which flourished about 450 million years ago. At that time, not only people with their tools, but even dinosaurs did not exist.

It is not known for certain where a clearly man-made object could have come from in such a rock. Scientists are now inclined to believe that the rock in which the hammer was found is not really that old, but they still cannot fully understand how it ended up inside the rock. The artifact is an exhibit at the Creationist Creation Evidence Museum in Texas.

Baghdad battery

Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

A clay pot with a copper tube inside and an iron rod in it, the design of which most closely resembles a modern battery. A set of three such artifacts was found in 1936 in the Hujjut Rabu area near the Iraqi capital of Baghdad. What they are and what they were used for is still unknown.

Some scientists have tried to fill a similar container with a solution of wine vinegar and have indeed obtained a voltage of 0.5 volts. They came to the conclusion that the device could indeed serve as a battery or rather a galvanic cell. On the other hand, there is no evidence that people used anything resembling electricity at the time when this pot was made. So the exhibit of the National Museum of Iraq remains a complete mystery.

Map of Piri Reis

Five archaeological artifacts whose secrets are unlikely to ever be solved

Piri-Reyes was an Ottoman navigator and cartographer, a contemporary of Sultan Suleiman the Magnificent – and this is the turn of the 15th and 16th centuries, when the era of great geographical discoveries was just beginning. Nevertheless, on the map that Piri-Reyes created in 1513, researchers saw the coasts of North and South America, North Africa, and the Atlantic islands marked quite accurately. As for the coasts of the Americas, the navigator himself claimed to have drawn them from the work of Christopher Columbus, but the original Columbian map has not yet been found.

Researchers of Piri-Reyes' work are also still arguing whether the image in its southern part is Antarctica or not – the continent was discovered 300 years after the cartographer lived. And they wonder how the Ottoman cartographer could have known about the Andes Mountains, which he also drew on the map. The map created by Piri-Reyes can be seen on the modern 10 Turkish Lira banknote, and the original is kept in the library of the Topkapi Palace in Istanbul, although it is not shown to tourists.

These artifacts are just a drop in the ocean of historical mysteries left to us by previous generations.

As OBOZREVATEL wrote, there are historical mysteries that scientists have been struggling with for tens or even hundreds of years – here are 12 of them. No less intriguing is the origin of life on Earth, over which scientists are gradually lifting the veil of mystery.

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