The Nazca Lines in Peru have baffled mankind for quite a long time–and now the mystery is even more intriguing. They are a series of enormous geoglyphs etched into a roughly 200-square-mile stretch of the desert, created by pre-Inca people somewhere between the 4th century B.C. and the 10th century A.D. This early land art features lines measuring as long as 30 miles and are best viewed from the air or from surrounding hillsides.. A team of researchers say the Nazca Lines represent “one of the most attractive ancient mysteries in the world.” It’s hypothesized that the geoglyphs had ritual astronomical functions, but no one knows for sure.
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It’s the geometric shapes that are the focus of their new research, ranging from triangles to trapezoids and spirals, even the figure of a human which has been dubbed the “astronaut”. Some 70 depictions of plants and animals can be seen. But researchers have discovered that some of Peru’s massive creations were identified incorrectly, and that the figures are actually of birds who lived far away from the site of geoglyphs. This clearly raises many new questions.
Among the 16 massive bird carvings in the Nazca desert of southern Peru are a hermit (a forest species) and a pelican (a coastal bird), according to research published in June 2019 in the Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports. The figure of a “hummingbird” is now considered to be a hermit, which is a close relation to a hummingbird but not found the areas where the Nazca lines were created.
Their findings indicate the geoglyphs represent exotic species of birds found a far distance from where the lines were created. “We revealed several discrepancies between their geoglyphic characteristics and those of the taxonomic groups to which they were attributed by previous research,” they wrote.
“In addition, we determined that some of the geoglyphs depicted a number of specific birds, including hermit, pelicans, and what is most likely an immature parrot. Each of these birds is regionally exotic. For instance, hermits and parrots are found in tropical rain forests whereas pelicans live in coastal areas.”
Related Video: 3,500 Year Old Prehistoric Friezes Unearthed Near Lima, Peru
The Nazca Lines may be best known for the representations of animals and plants that measure up to 1,200 feet long. The Nazca people also created other forms, such as a humanoid figure (nicknamed “The Astronaut”), hands, and some completely unidentifiable depictions.
In 2011, a Japanese team discovered a new geoglyph that appears to represent a scene of beheading, which is far smaller than other Nazca figures and not easily seen from aerial surveys, according to History. The Nazca people were known to collect “trophy heads,” and research in 2009 revealed that the majority of trophy skulls came from the same populations as the people they were buried with (rather than outside cultures).
In 2016, the same team found another geoglyph, this time one that depicts a 98-foot-long mythical creature that has many legs and is sticking out its tongue.
A trio of Japanese researchers—Masaki Eda of the Hokkaido University Museum, Takeshi Yamasaki of Yamashina Institute for Ornithology, and Masato Sakai of Yamagata University—have now revealed that many of the birds in question were previously misidentified.
What Are the Lines?
The lines are known as geoglyphs – drawings on the ground made by removing rocks and earth to create a “negative” image. The rocks which cover the desert have oxidized and weathered to a deep rust color, and when the top 12-15 inches of rock is removed, a light-colored, high contrasting sand is exposed. Because there’s so little rain, wind and erosion, the exposed designs have stayed largely intact for 500 to 2000 years.
Scientists believe that the majority of lines were made by the Nasca people, who flourished from around A.D. 1 to 700.
The most wondrous thing about these ancient symbols is that you often can’t see what they depict from ground level. You have to get up in the air to discern the patterns, which is why their full glory wasn’t understood until after the invention of airplanes.
The earlier Paracas glyphs, on the other hand, were often laid down on hillsides, which means that, from the right perspective, they can be seen by people on the ground. They also often depicted humans, in contrast to the more geometric Nazca shapes.
Most of the newly discovered Paracas figures depict warriors, and they predate the Nazca lines by centuries. You can see their glory in this video fromNational Geographic:
“This means that it is a tradition of over a thousand years that precedes the famous geoglyphs of the Nazca culture, which opens the door to new hypotheses about its function and meaning,” archaeologist Johny Isla of the Peruvian Ministry of Culture, who is in charge of restoring and protecting the lines, told National Geographic.
Perhaps the most obvious purpose of the lines is that the Nazca wanted to display their reverence for the natural world and pay homage to their gods, especially those who controlled the weather, so vital to successful agriculture in the arid plains of Peru. In support of this view is the fact that many of the designs also appear on Nazca textiles and pottery decoration. In addition, many of the straight lines radiate from hills and mountains and other water sources (62 such points have been identified), trapezoid shapes often ‘point’ in the direction of a water source, and the two principal Nazca sites of Ventilla and Cahuachi were connected by such a line.
Erich von Däniken’s theory is the most famous approach to solve the mystery of Nazca. He provides evidence that a long time ago visitors from other stars visited the earth and naturally Nazca. At this place they landed, during the landing stones was blown away by the power of rocket propulsion. By approaching more the power was increasing and the cleaned band broader. In this way, the first trapezes emerged. Later the Aliens disappeared and left confused people. Like in the modern cargo cults they tried to call the Gods back by drawing lines, figures and trapezes. Despite many attributing it to him, Erich has never said the formations were made by Aliens.
Gaia releases new videos every week What knowledge lies in our ancient past? A team of renowned scholars has come together to go beyond the surface-level myths, artifacts, and mysteries found in ancient texts and lost cities from around the world. Journey to decipher the code scattered throughout ancient civilizations.
The newly found Nazca Lines are thousands of years old. … Heritage site of desert hieroglyphs known as the Nazca Lines (and in early 2018, a truck drove across them, too). … Restoration of the area opened the doors to a project that used … In contrast, the new Palpa designs cover hillsides so that ancient ..