General, Research, Technology

Archaeologists unraveled the mystery of statues on Easter Island

Easter Island is considered one of the most mysteriousplaces on our planet, because more than 800 huge statues called moai were found on it. It is believed that they were built between 1250 and 1500 by the ancient civilization of Rapanui, but historians still do not know what they were intended for. There is a reasonable assumption that the statues represented the Polynesian gods and leaders, so the locals still believe that they contain the supernatural power of their ancestors. The ancient inhabitants of the island could believe that the monuments erected by them help preserve the fertility of the earth, and this assumption has recently been proved by archaeologists from the United States, New Zealand and Chile.

Moai statues on Easter Island

International Group Research Resultsscientists was published in the scientific journal Phys.org. Scientists led by Joanna Van Tilbur carefully studied two statues near the 150-meter-long volcano Rano Raraku, located in the eastern part of Easter Island. It is believed that 95% of the statues erected on the island were created precisely from its volcanic tuff, which was almost the main building material of the ancient tribe. However, a study of the soil near the volcano also proved that this place served as a fertile agricultural center.

Statues on the slope of the volcano Rano Raraku

Mystery of Easter Island

At least highthe concentration in the soil of phosphorus and calcium, which are very important for the growth of agricultural plants. Analysis of land samples showed that at the foot of the volcano, an ancient civilization grew bananas. Traces of sweet potato, which for the inhabitants of the island is a kind of potato, were also found in the soil. Another plant grown in these parts is colocasia, which is an ingredient in the Hawaiian Laulau dish with pork.

Sweet potato - "potato" of the indigenous inhabitants of Easter Island

According to researchers, the soil near the volcanoEarly Raraku could be the most fertile on the island. Not surprisingly, the indigenous people wanted to maintain this fertility for as long as possible. If they really believed that the statues of moai contained the supernatural power of the gods, leaders and ancestors, they could well place them near the landing sites of plants important to their life.

Do you know where and why did the other kinds of people go?

However, apparently, the divine power of the ancientthe people of Rapanui did not help. Representatives of this civilization and builders of mysterious statues disappeared even before Easter Island was discovered by Europeans. The reason for the fall of civilization is the fact that it cut down almost all the forests and exhausted the entire supply of resources. In addition, several tribes inhabited the island and wars broke out between them for resources.

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By the way, another theory about destinationstatues say that different tribes competed in who built the largest monuments. Their height ranged from 3 to 5 meters, and the mass averaged about 5 tons. One of the statues called Hoa Hakananaya today is considered a work of art and is stored in the British Museum.

Statue of Hoa Hakananaya at the British Museum

By the way, on the topic of hostility between tribesEaster Islands recommend watching the 1994 Rapa Nui movie. Of course, the historical value of the film is in great doubt, but how the locals destroyed nature, it shows very well.