We are used to thinking that ancient world was not as developed as our modern civilization. But is that actually true? They are as different from us as we are from the people that will be living on Earth in a thousand years. They had their own gods, belief systems, and yes, technologies as well. Some of the archaeological finds we make today reveal that thousands of years ago people were using mechanisms of incredible complexity. Some of them still baffle scientists as they can’t figure out what those gizmos were used for! Here’s a list of 10 ancient finds of unknown origin.
Behold the world’s oldest ‘gear’ machine. Found inside a shipwreck near Greece in 1900, this incredible mechanism reveals incredible workmanship of the ancient people. This machine is believed to be some kind of an ‘analog computer’ that was built to help perform various calculations and astronomical predictions. Historians still can’t figure out who was the engineer of this mechanism. They only know that it was probably built by a Greek astronomer around 3rd century B.C.
Many believe that the famous Vikings were the first ones to discover North America – 500 years before Christopher Columbus sailed to its shores. There’s not much substantial evidence to back this theory, but for this Goddard Coin that was found by Guy Mellgren in an ancient Native American settlement on the territory of Brooklin, Main. Archaeologists identified this coin belonging to the era of Olav Kyrre, a Norwegian King, who ruled around 1067-1093 A.D.
It appears that ancient Parthians invented galvanic cells more than 1,500 years ago! At least, that’s what some history buffs believe. These Baghdad Batteries were found on the territory of modern Iraq and might have been used for electroplating gold onto other surfaces made of metals like silver. While scientists are still not sure what to make of these ‘batteries’, Discovery Channel made a documentary demonstrating how these jars could have been used to electroplate different items.
Lake Winnipesaukee Mystery Stone
Found in 1872 in New England, this egg-shaped artifact still baffles historians as to the purpose of its creation. The stone is all covered in carvings of unknown origin – there’s a face, some circles, an ear of corn and a bunch of other symbols. While historians believe this object was created to commemorate a peace treaty, there’s another, more mysterious angle to this artifact. It has two holes on each end of the stone and they seem to have been created with power tools and not the simple boring techniques that were available to Native Americans of that period.
Iron Pillar of Delhi
Ancient Indian engineers were truly genius, which made them popular well outside the territory of their homeland. It is known that many Islamic factions valued Indian-made weaponry even more than their famed ‘Damascus steel’. Many believe that it was actually inspired by the Indian ‘wootz steel’. The incredible Iron Pillar that’s now located in Delhi, is famous for its amazing rust-resistant qualities. It’s been created 1,600 years ago and it’s still standing! A special protective film is covering the pillar that was made with wrought iron of high quality. The special anti-corrosive layer has preserved the pillar for hundreds of years. This artifact is one of a kind!
The so-call ‘UFO tooth-wheel’ made quite an uproar on the Internet a few years ago. Scientists don’t know exactly what this detail was used for, but it sure is an ancient piece of metal. Found in a piece of coal, it was estimated to be around 300 million years old. Another source states that the X-ray diffraction analysis showed that the detail was actually made from an alloy, which led to further assumptions about the artificial origin of the artifact.
Piri Reis Map
This map, created by the genius Ottoman admiral and cartographer Piri Reis, is among the most incredible ancient maps that have ever been found. Made from gazelle skin, it depicts Africa, coastlines of Europe, Caribbean Islands and both Americas with mind-blowing accuracy. Reis inscribed a variety of sources that he used to create his map, which included Early Arabic maps, the Ptolemaic maps from Ancient Egypt and Early Indian-made maps that were later used by the Portuguese. He even used the supposedly-lost map of Christopher Columbus!
Found on a territory of Toluca Valley just a few dozen kilometers from Mexico City, this head of the terracotta figurine has really impressed archaeologists and historians with its similarity to Roman workmanship. Archaeologist Romeo H. Hristov believes this is proof of trans-oceanic contact between the Romans and Mesoamericans long before the arrival of Christopher Columbus. The bearded man supposedly mirrors the ‘fashion’ of Roman Emperors from the 2nd century A.D.
Shroud of Turin
Possibly one of the most controversial finds related to Christianity, the Shroud of Turin has sparked violent disputes not only between world’s greatest historians, but among theologians as well. This piece of cloth seems to bear the image of a man who has suffered from a crucifixion, thus pointing to the crucifixion of Jesus Christ himself. Even the radiocarbon tests can’t reveal the exact date of the Shroud of Turin, so its divinity is still largely debated.
The Sri Lanka Meteorite Fossils
You may think it’s just another piece of meteorite, but it very well might be the only evidence of actual alien life forms that came from space. This magnificent find came to Earth with the 2012’s meteorite shower that hit Sri Lanka’s Polonnaruwa. As the story goes, local cops gathered some samples and took them to the Medical Research Institute. They were later transported to the University of Cardiff for a more detailed examination. The first study revealed the remnants of what looked like simple life forms that could be carried around through space via asteroids and meteoroids. More detailed examination confirmed that the meteorites contained ancient remains of marine algae that were not of earthly origin. Though many are skeptical about these studies, it is a truly remarkable find.