We all dreamed of being a great explorer when we were kids, hoping to one day find treasures. Some took this dream quite seriously, and wanted to become archaeologists…
Here’s a list of 11 of the most incredible discoveries tucked away in National Geographic’s archives.
1. Ötzi, dubbed “The Icy Mummy.” First discovered back in 1991, at Tyrol’s Ötztal Alps.
The studies made on Ötzi indicated that he was born around roughly 3,300 BC. This makes him the oldest of all mummies discovered in Europe. Once scientists compared DNA samples, it was indicated that from the 4,000 men that lived in Tyrol, 19 had been found to be relatives to “The Iceman.”
2. Thousands of Terracotta soldiers, along with full size horses, can be found standing guard over Emperor Qin Shi Huang’s tomb.
The statues were built as wished by the Emperor himself, to help escort him into the next life. The Terracotta army was seen by specialists to be a very advanced move, as at the time, it was considered a custom to bury conscious soldiers in the cases.
3. A walking cane that was used by King Tut.
The cane was found in his tomb and is beautifully decorated with the carvings of a Nubian prisoner. It is believed that the Pharaoh would have used the cane facing down, as a symbol of humiliation towards the Nubians.
4. A picture of Leptis Magna, located in West Libya, taken from above.
It is recognized as one of the biggest and most well-kept Roman cities that were built during Augustus and Tiberius reigns. Until this very day, archaeologists continue to find more and more new things.
5. A sinkhole in Mexico.
Natural sinkholes that happen from the collapsing of the limestone cave ceilings are called Cenotes. After collapsing, they expose rivers of groundwater beneath them. These Cenotes were used by the Mayans as a source of water and a place to perform sacrifices.
6. In 1947, archaeologists discovered the head of an Olmec, made from stone.
The Olmecs were believed to have lived between 1,500 BC and 400 BC. Located in Central America, they made large heads made of stone that weighed roughly 6 to 50 tons. The phenomenon of the stone heads still cannot be explained by scientists to this day.
7. The Megaliths of Stenness
Much like Stonehenge, these Scottish rocks also hold many associations with legends. The most famous being that it was a placed used for sacrifices.
8. The family of Luis Leakey in the Olduvai Gorge, searching for an early hominid.
Being a huge believer of evolution, Luis Leakey found the skull of what is believed to be the predecessor to the modern man.
9. The Castle of Palenque.
In Palenque, an ancient city located north-east of Chiapas, a state in Mexico, lies a 4-storey tower. No other towers like it have been found among other Mayan cities. It is believed that they were used by the Mayans to watch the sun’s rays.
10. From what was previously known as the kingdom of Mustang, a man walks loaded with human bones.
In the mountain cave of Nepal, the bones of 27 men, children and women are scattered. They have been laying there for nearly 1,500 years and bare what are believed to be cuts on the bones. Experts believe that the remains are what are left from a funeral rite.
11. Ancient Scottish settlement ruins.
Dated between 15th century BC to the 17th century AD. The remnants of houses, art pieces and various different artifacts can still be found today.
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