Ancient Civilizations Mysteries: 16 Enigmas of History

Humanity’s past is truly a riddle, full of enigmas and fascinating mysteries. Knowing it and even trying to solve it can help us to better comprehend who we are and how we came to be what we are, but among what we know of the great civilizations now lost, there exist certain factors which are still very enigmatic, from hieroglyphics and ancient inscriptions to giant structures, works of art, and even entire cities submerged in the sea. Much controversy and fiction is woven around each one of these enigmas and it ends up making them into myths. I invite you to see some of them as we get to know these 5 myths and mysteries about lost civilizations.

ancient civilization mysteries

Ancient Civilizations Mysteries: 9 Enigmas of History

1. Submarine structures of Yonaguni

Yonaguni Ancient Mystery
Yonaguni Ancient Mystery

Discovered in the year 1985 through a series of submarine expeditions under the charge of the submariner Kihachirō Aratake on the Japanese island of Yonaguni, in the southern outskirts of Okinawa, the so-called Submarine structures of Yonaguni have been borrowed for all kinds of stories, suppositions and investigations. They have to do with great formations which are found between 6 and as much as 30 meters of depth which seem to be altars, stairs, paths, and towers, the reason for which there are those who say that they are structures created by some unknown civilization. However, from science, the view is very different and numerous geologists and historians state that it is all of a natural origin. Other lecturers, like the marine geologist Masaaki Kimura maintain that it could have to do with the ruins of a city which were submerged by an earthquake.

2. The Mayan Calendar

Mayan Calendar Ancient Mystery
Mayan Calendar Ancient Mystery

How many things have we read and heard regarding the Ancient Mayan calendar? The truth is that in December of 2012, nothing else was talked about more than this. Obviously, nothing happened, but the fact is that as was evident, the calendar continues to be a mystery to us. Among others, one of the simplest and most sensible explanations mentions that this calendar of some 5,125 years in duration, which starts in approximately 3114 B.C. and ends in 2012, does no more than end one of the cycles or periods which compose the extensive Maya calendar to continue with a new one. More precisely, it is the end of the thirteenth Bak’tun, of 400 years in duration.

3. Nazca Lines

Nazca Lines Ancient Mystery
Nazca Lines Ancient Mystery

The famous Nazca lines, located 200 km. to the south of the city of Lima, Peru, are composed of a series of ancient, mysterious and fascinating lines or geoglyphs in the middle of the Nazca desert, which form close to 800 animals (some of which are several kilometers in length) which can only be seen from above. They have a perfect outline, with excellent straight and parallel lines, and very surprising diverse geometric figures. It is believed that each drawing was made with stakes, calculations and cords, while there are those who give free reign to imagination and elaborate all kinds of theories about their origin and purpose, among them, that they are closely related to the existence, visits, and forming of relationships with intelligent forms of life from another planet, or the ancient civilizations of Peru.

4. Submerged city on the coast of Cuba

Cuba Coast Mystery
Cuba Coast Mystery

Feeding the myths about lost civilizations under the sea, such as that of Atlantis, the news about the discovery of an entire city submerged under the waters of the coast of Cuba became known a few years ago. The news mentioned that a team of Canadian explorers, supposedly contracted by the Cuban government to search for petroleum, discovered what could be the ruins of a city submerged thousands of years ago at a depth of 650 meters and, as was to be expected, did not delay in taking on all kinds of myths and fantastic aspects. There are even those who assert that these constructions are more than 6,000 years old, which would be preceding the Egyptian pyramids by some 1,500 years. The nature of these findings still remains in the shadows and very little information can be found in this respect.

5. Stone Spheres, Costa Rica

Stone Spheres Ancient Mystery
Stone Spheres Ancient Mystery

Nestled in the thick jungle south of San Jose is a set of more than 500 stone spheres of different shapes and sizes. The find, made by United Fruit Company workers in 1939, sparked a craze to discover what they held inside, and some were even blown up using dynamite only to find a solid block of stone. These perfectly spherical remains of over 15 tons in weight are a mystery even after being examined by historians, archaeologists, and other specialists. All that is known is that they were made by a pre-Columbian civilization around 600 BC.

7. Stonehenge, England

Stonehenge Ancient Mystery
Stonehenge Ancient Mystery

This megalithic ring may well be a clock, astronomical observatory or ceremonial center for some Celtic tribe, and is over 4000 years old. The golden ratio between the structures forming the circle and its position according to the Sun during the summer solstice suggests that the builders possessed advanced knowledge of astronomy. The rocks’ transportation to the site has also raised all kinds of theories today.

8. Cochno Stone, Scotland

On the surface of a monolith more than thirteen meters long and eight meters wide, hundreds of inscriptions with circles, spirals, ellipses and all kinds of glyphs lie waiting for someone to decipher them and find out who its creators were. Early theories point to this being a ritual site that functioned as a funerary space, while also including a map of the stars and messages in a language still unknown to archaeologists.

9. Gobekli Tepe

Gobekli Tepe Ancient mystery
Gobekli Tepe Ancient mystery

These are the oldest architectural remains to have been found so far, dating back more than 12,000 years, when it’s believed mankind was still nomadic and unaware of agriculture. This structure in south-eastern Turkey lies buried in the mountains and contains engravings, bas-reliefs and animal and humanoid sculptures. The bewilderment increased when it was discovered that it had been buried in around 8000 BC, with the aim of hiding it. It redefines the moment when mankind became sedentary.

10. Antikythera Mechanism

ancient civilization mystery

In 1900, a group of divers found a set of differently sized gears that seemed to be part of a more elaborate machine just off the Greek coast. After international interest and further expeditions, it was discovered that each piece was part of a mechanical calendar calculation system created around 200 BC, with the ability of predicting the movement of the stars and matching them with dates that were important to the ancient Greeks, such as the Olympic Games. It is a unique instrument both in its function and its technology, the like of which would not be seen until at least 1200 years later.

11. Turkey’s Giant Circles

Along the mountainous terrain dividing Turkey, Syria and Jordan are more than a dozen walls that make perfect circles up to 400 meters in diameter. One by one, these strange figures stretch for hundreds of kilometers and some have been cut through by ancient Roman roads. Experts have dismissed their use as farmyards and retaining walls due to their height, and still do not understand the function of these mysterious lines that can be seen from the sky.

12. Ancient Egyptian Artifacts in the Grand Canyon

Egyptian artifacts Grand Canyon Mystery
Egyptian artifacts Grand Canyon Mystery

This is one of the most curious and interesting myths, or assumptions, that I found and although it lacks practically all support, only thinking about such an idea leaves us open-mouthed. At question, the only thing we count on in talking about this is a notice which was published in an American newspaper, the “Arizona Gazette” on April 5th, in the year 1909, in which it is said that explorations of the Grand Canyon of the Colorado River, in Arizona, resulted in the surprising discovery of hieroglyphics, ruins, artifacts, statues, copper weapons and even mummies of civilizations which would have migrated from the East, more specifically from Ancient Egypt. Although the idea is infinitely interesting, it is no more than that, a simple “news article” and the credibility of the story is in doubt, among so many other things, because the place has never been found again and in fact it has been attempted very few times since then. We know that sensationalism has no limits and that it is more than likely that it was all a lie. Meanwhile, the only thing we do know is that there are no existing records of any kind to support this, thus it is false.

There are innumerable enigmatic questions which still continue to be a mystery for traditional scholars when it comes to ancient civilizations and their development. Here we have some of the most incredible similarities between prehistoric civilizations which shared a universal scientific knowledge, something scholars believe is impossible.

13. Why did ancient civilizations construct pyramids all over the world?

Pyramid Ancient Mystery
Pyramids Ancient Mystery

Ancient civilizations constructed similar pyramids in practically the entire world, following a mysterious pattern. Did they have the same “teacher”?

One of the common aspects which most surprises people is the construction of pyramids in the ancient world. These majestic monuments can be found en all the corners of the world, from terraced pyramids circular pyramids, and the classics. Almost all the ancient cultures of the world constructed incredible pyramids which challenge our current understanding of some of the most incredible civilizations on Earth.

The inhabitants of ancient Egypt, ancient China, the Pre-Incas, Incas, Aztecs, Mayas and many other ancient cultures raised pyramids which still exist today.

No one has been able to understand what the true purpose of the pyramids was. Destined to be used as tombs? As monuments to honor the gods? Or is it possible that, as many believe today, the pyramids were constructed in order to make use of the natural energy of the planet and the universe?

The mystery around the pyramids gets deeper when you realize that some of them, like the pyramids of the Giza plateau are aligned astronomically. The truth is that, although we have dealt a great deal with understanding the fundamental principles of the pyramids which ancient cultures constructed, we still have no idea how they were capable of raising these majestic buildings and what their true purpose was.

The pyramids and their celestial connection

There is a certain celestial connection existent among the Giza Pyramids. Does it reveal an interaction with “beings come from heaven”? The same pattern can also be found in the pyramids of Xian. Without doubt, it is more than a simple coincidence.

The fact that the cultures and civilizations of the world would construct monuments is something fascinating and the fact that nearly all of them share architectural similarities is simply amazing, but we cannot forget the celestial connection that the majority of them also share.

If we focus on the pyramids of the Giza plateau, the pyramids of Teotihuacan and even the Chinese pyramids, we will discover that all of them seem to be aligned particularly to the constellations. In this case we are speaking of the constellation of Orion, which apparently was of highest importance not only for the ancient Egyptians, but also for the ancient Aztecs and their predecessors, ancient China, and other civilizations of the world. How they were able to position these monuments with such precision in order to imitate the cosmos is something that no one has been able to comprehend, and it remains as one of the great enigmas of history.

14. Ancient metallic clamps… Evidence of lost ancient technology?

Ancient Metallic clamp
Ancient Metallic clamp

Were metal clamps used to hold together immense and heavy rocks in ancient cultures around the world? This image suggests it and could prove it. It is believed that molten metal was poured into the fissures in the shape of a T or an X and upon cooling and hardening they held the rocks together. An ancient technology, but very advanced. Dictated by the same teacher?

Are these ancient metal clamps real proofs of an advanced technology lost and waiting to be rediscovered? This technology can be found in temples and other prehistoric monuments around the world. What was the true purpose of these metallic clamps? And the most important question which no one has been able to answer is: How was this ancient technology transmitted to other parts of the world?

Evidence of metal clamps being used can be found in constructions in ancient Egypt, ancient Greece, Pre-Inca, Inca and other parts of the world. Is it possible that these ancient builders had the same teacher? Do they follow the same pattern just like they did when they began to construct the pyramids?

These mysterious slots in the shape of a T have been discovered at Tiahuanaco, Ollantaytambo, Koricancha and at the site of Yuroc Rumi, Vilcabamba. These clamps were also used in the Parthenon, in buildings in Mesopotamia, Egypt, and Cambodia.

While scientists are still not sure about the exact purpose of these mysterious T-shaped furrows, some have suggested that they could have been used for some type of ceremonial purpose while others point out that the ancient clamps could have been used to maintain enormous rocks in the correct position.

15. The symbol of the swastika, present in almost all the cultures of the past

Swastika Ancient Mystery
Swastika Ancient Mystery

Contrary to what is currently believed, the Swastika represents peace and prosperity and this was known by many diverse ancient civilizations around the world. The Swastika, also known as the Gammadion, is one of the oldest and most widely used symbols on planet earth. And if you believe that it is a symbol which represents evil and death, you are very mistaken. The symbol of the swastika represents peace and prosperity and is a very positive symbol. It is considered a universal symbol and was used by numerous cultures and civilizations throughout history.

As we know it today, the Swastika is actually a word in Sanskrit which means “that which is good” or “all is well” but some translate it as “fortunate or auspicious object,” whatever the translation is it is a very positive symbol.

16. The symbol of the Pine Cone: It is found in nearly every culture around the world

Pinecone symbol Mystery
Pinecone symbol Mystery

The symbol represents the Pineal Gland, this was known by ancient civilizations, and it represents the Third Eye. From ancient Rome to ancient Mesopotamia, the symbol of the Pine is without doubt one of the most mysterious symbols found in ancient architecture and art.

According to many investigators, the symbol of the pine points towards the highest level of spiritual illumination possible, something that was recognized by nearly all the ancient cultures around the world. It can be found in monuments and art, including those produced by the Indonesians, Babylonians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans.

Strangely, the symbol of the Pine had the same meaning for all the ancient cultures, symbolizing the secret vestigial Organ: the Pineal Gland, also known as the “third eye.” The reason why this ancient symbol was present in numerous ancient civilizations is a mystery, which like the pyramids and the metal clamps, investigators have not been able to understand.

Bonus: Four Solved Archaeological Mysteries

1. Strange Acrobat Sacrifices

In 2008, Antiquity magazine published a story on the discovery of human remains in a cave in north-western Syria. The skeletons, which belonged to at least three people killed in a sacrifice in around 2300 BC, were arranged in strange positions and their skulls had been removed. After analyzing the bones, researchers determined that they had been acrobats because of their bones and ligaments’ atypical development. Experts point out that other remains linked to this type of activity can be found.

2. Screaming Mummies

In 1886, archaeologist Gaston Maspero discovered a strange burial site with no identification of its occupant. Inside, they discovered a mummy covered with sheep’s wool and with bound arms and legs. However, most disturbingly of all what was left of its face had a deep expression of despair, and was mouthing a scream with its mouth wide-open.

At the time, theories trying to explain the expression ranged from poisoning or torture right before death, to them being buried while suffering from catalepsy. However, the cause of this horrible expression, which has since been found on many other mummies, is due to the flesh decomposing, which causes the jaw to drop, leaving the mouth open as if it were letting out a disturbing, desperate scream.

3. The Moa of the Mount Owen Caves

A group of researchers were exploring New Zealand’s harsh mountainous regions’ vast network of underground caves, when under Mount Owen they encountered a type of claw that seemed to have belonged to a monster.

The disturbing discovery, made up of a series of strange bones still held together by a layer of skin, turned out to be the talon of a non-flying bird known as the Dinornis or moa, and was over 3000 years old. Although it went extinct around five centuries ago, the spelunkers’ fright back in 1986 is more than understandable.

4. The First Chemical War in History

In 1933, while excavating in the Syrian site of Dura-Europos, where the Persians and Romans fought several battles in the 3rd century BC, a team led by archaeologist Robert du Mesnil made a creepy discovery linked to chemical warfare. In particular, they had discovered a series of strange tunnels, one of which had 19 bodies that seemed to have died while trying to escape from something.

After several investigations, it was concluded in 2009 that the Romans had discovered that the Persians were building tunnels, so they began to dig their own to intercept them. However, the Persians had prepared a deadly trap. They incinerated different compounds based on bitumen and sulfur crystals to slowly poison the Romans. The toxic cloud swarmed the Roman tunnels, leaving the first victims of chemical warfare, fought over 2000 years ago.

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