Easter Island: An Archaeological Reconnaissance

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In Easter Island Archaeologists work hard to understand what is actually happening there. Let us begin from the beginning, we were so surprised to find this.

1Moai

Perhaps you have heard of Easter Island and its own peculiar statues? The giant stone figures could be seen all around the island. They’re called the Moai, which means”head” in Polynesian. There are 887 heads on the island and they are a mystery to this day.

 

2Height of Statues

One clue recently led to An unbelievable discovery. It all began when archaeologists quantified the heads’ height. Keep reading to discover why this simple fact is so important.

 

3“Easter Island Statues Project”

Its official name is “Easter Island Statues Project,” and a great team of archaeologists has been working hard to learn what’s underneath the surface. The project helped them learn more about Moai, since they found a large amount of red pigment within the structures.

 

4Markings on the Heads

The statues project lead To some extraordinary discoveries. One relic the team discovered had a carved crescent shape engraved inside, which they thought symbolizes a canoe or a vaka. On the surfaces of the statues they found petroglyphs. Everything seemed like hints that could potentially reveal who assembled these grand statues.

 

5How They Moved the Moai Statues?

How They Moved the Moai Statues?

It has always been a puzzle how Among the theories assumed human labour together with different equipment, while others suggested logs and ropes were used to roll the figurines from place to place. In any event, they required lots of effort to move.

 

6Trying To Make A New One

Czech engineer named Pavel Pavel and Norwegian adventurer Thor Heyerdahl worked together to make a new Moai statue. It took 16 people and heavy duty ropes to gradually move it, but it couldn’t be transferred without damaging the statue.

 

7The Riot

There are also many Theories on why the people vanished from the island. The most common indicates that the islanders began a riot in the 18th century when they rebelled against their leaders. That is when many statues were broken down, though they have since been re-erected.

 

8Aliens?

There is even a theory that Claims that the Moai were made by aliens. Erich von Daniken introduced the idea in his book “Chariots of the Gods? : Unsolved Mysteries of the Past.” He also wrote about the Egyptian Pyramids and the Nazca line drawings.

 

9All Roads Going To The Volcano

Rapa Nui’s streets were Discovered as well as many statues, Thor Heyerdahl writes. He disagreed with Katherine Routledge’s concept about the streets serving ritualistic needs. Nevertheless, it’s safe to presume Routledge had a stage since most of the roads in the island lead to volcano Rano Raraku, which was a worshiping center for the islanders.

 

10How Old are Moai Statues?

The writing on the Moai Discovered by the islanders is also a puzzle. According to Robert M. Schoch, the calligraphy discovered could be 10,000 years old than it had been first believed, making the island elderly also. He discovered many parallel findings involving the Moai and the early Turkish Gobekli Tepe.

 

11Ear Differences

A lot could be learned about The men and women who once occupied Easter Island from the skeletal structures located there. Scientists discovered narrow and long skulls that indicate prominent differences from other humans. They’re thought to have had long ears, which they inherited from early Peruvians.

 

12Birdman

Illustrations from “Cannibal Cave” show a particular “Birdman” (Tangata manu). Birdman was the winner of an annual contest when islanders would attempt to collect the first egg of each season. The pronounced winner was the person who swam fastest to a nearby island, gathered the egg, and returned to Rapa Nui. He would eventually become’Birdman’ and the community leader for the entire year to come.

 

13A Different One

There is one especially unique It’s named Tukuturi and it’s thought to be a physical representation of a historical singer. Tukuturi is smaller than the other figurines, has a beard, and is made with a different material than the remaining statues.

 

14Mata Tools

Archaeologists were stunned to learn about the tools Rapa Nui people used. They’d Mata tools made from volcanic glass in many sizes and shapes. The majority of them were sharp and used for a lot of things, from fighting to wood carving.

 

15Recompense

A tourist from Finland after Broke one of the statues’ ears in Anakena beach. Someone reported this case to the authorities and he was fined $17,000. He was lucky he did not wind up in jail for several years instead. After that, tourist safety procedures have become much more straightforward.

 

16Transferred

Hoa Hakananai’a, among the Iconic Moai statues, isn’t on the island – it has been transferred to The British Museum in London. It traveled throughout almost a complete year, from November 1968 to August 1969.

 

17Leprosy

Dr. Anneliese Pontius came up Using a concept that the islanders’ motivation for producing the figurines was to heal leprosy. According to her, they wanted to make’the best specimens’ after confronting body deformities within their community. The statues would act as a model for assisting people who suffer from leprosy.

 

18Fast development

Easter Island has a rich history going back thousands of years. The people alive today have seen drastic changes during their lifetime. By way of instance, a tour man remembers learning that his grandmother has spent her youth in a cave, and lots of islanders were baffled the first time a plane flew across the island.

 

19A Paradise

Tourists who travel to Easter Island enjoy exceptional insights by their regional guides. Moi, among these, works for a touring company. He takes vacationers diving in Ovahe shore, they fish, and he cooks them dinner before the statues. One-of-a-kind experience!

 

20Hanga Roa

The people who live on Easter Island today are not necessarily native. 90% of these reside in the capital, Hanga Roa. The town isn’t very urban. It’s strict construction laws to be able to protect nature, the capital is far from the most exciting place on the island.

 

21Easter ısland Hotels

If you want to treat yourself With real luxury whilst visiting Easter Island, you can visit Hangaroa Eco Village and Spa, the island’s first high-end resort. It creates green energy from solar panels and wind turbines and provides a relaxing and exceptional experience for visitors.

 

Destroying Trees

Easter Island Trees

It is apparent that many experts Disagree on several facts regarding the history of Easter Island, but there is something that they all agree on – an intense deforestation that occurred long ago. It is possible that the islanders themselves burnt all the trees for a variety of reasons – either to clear the land, or to construct canoes, etc..

 

22Far Far Away Island

The nearest inhabited area is Pitcairn Island, which is actually 1,200 miles away from Easter Island. The closest inhabited area is Chile, the nearest mainland, is 2,300 miles off. Its location certainly does not make it effortless to go to.

 

23The Origin of its Name

As you are aware of by now, the Island’s title does not imply there are any easter bunnies on it, nor eggs available inside. In actuality, it got its name from Dutch explorer Jacob Roggeveen, the first European man to get there, landed on Easter Sunday April 5, 1722. The official name of this island is Isla de Pascua, as it is officially part of Chile where Spanish is spoken.

 

Religious Tendencies

Easter Island

Jacob Roggeveen told the world Regarding the religious tendencies of these people from Easter Island. He explained that”they depended, in the event of need, in their gods or idols which stand erected all along the sea coast in great numbers, before they drop down and invoke them.” He also said there were priests in the community.

 

24Who Lived First?

Throughout the 20th century, Researchers believed that Easter Island was initially inhibited by South American Indians, but recent data indicates that it was probable that the Polynesians who dwelt there arrived first.

 

25Historical Names of the Easter Island

Ahead of the island got its Current title, it had a history of unique names. The oldest name known is “Te Pito o Te Henua,” literally translated “The middle of the World.” At one point, it was also called “Mata-Ki-Te-Rani,” meaning “Eyes Looking at Heaven.”

 

26Under Ground Bodies

While only the heads are Visible on the surface, the Moai statues actually have complete bodies that are buried in the floor. Archaeologists discovered the underground bodies are covered by tattoos.

27Ancient Engineering

Easter Island Statue Project Manager, Jo Anne Van Tilburg, released a statement saying:

“Our EISP excavations recently Exposed the torsos of two 7m tall statues. Hundreds, possibly thousands, of visitors to the island have been amazed to see that, indeed, Easter Island statues have bodies! More important, however, we discovered a great deal about the Rapa Nui techniques of early engineering.”

 

28Three Volcanoes

There are three extinct volcanoes on Easter Island. More specifically, Easter Island is one big volcano of itself. The largest of three volcanos is called”Rano Kau” and it is located at the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Rapa Nui National Park.

 

29Rats

There’s one theory that claims That the inhabitants disappeared from the island following the infestation of rats. It is even possible that rats were responsible for vegetation becoming extinct. According to archaeological finds, the rats turned into the local diet staple.

 

30Where Did they Go?

Although it’s unknown what Exactly happened, experts mostly agree that the first inhabitants of Easter Island were responsible to their extinction. Whether they destroyed the woods, overpopulated the staircase, or did something else, we probably won’t ever know.

 

31Who Constructed Moai Statues?

And the biggest question: that Constructed these famous Moai statues? It might be the ancient Polynesians’ craft guilds, or maybe the island’s clan members. There is still lots of research to do.

 

32Symbolic Meaning of the Moai Statues

Moai have deep symbolic meanings. According to some archaeologists, they represent authority and power. For the islanders, they were definitely more than just symbols. The statues were actually sacred spirits in physical form. There’s a concept that suggests that Moai represent the early ancestors who watch the people from the island’s border towards its centre.

33UNESCO

The Rapa Nui National Park, Located in the north-end of the island, is on UNESCO’s list of Wolrd Heritage Sites.

 

34Hats and Hair

The Moai actually wear hats! They also have “hair,” which is called pukao in Rap Nui. The islanders strongly believe that one’s supernatural powers (mana) come from having hair.

 

35Other Small Statues

There are other kinds of statues on Easter Island that get overlooked. They are much smaller, the Mo’ai Kavakava are little figures made from timber and they signify lanky men. Kavakava means”ribs” and the figurines apparently represent hungry starving demons.

36Ahu Akivi Legend

Ahu Akivi is a special site on Easter Island. It is a home to seven equivalent Moai statues who face the sunset on the day of the spring equinox and face away from the sunrise during the fall equinox. The statues represent seven guards arranged by the King’s soul to await him and his suite to return from a trip in a fantasy.

 

37Misconceptions

There are many misconceptions spreading about the Moai, and Van Tilburg is determined to crush them. She once Said that “the reason people think that they are [just] heads is that there are approximately 150 Most famous, most beautiful and most photographed of the Easter Island statues. This indicated to people who hadn’t seen photographs of [unearthed Statues] they are heads only.”