I wanted to be Indiana Jones as a kid.
The problem is, archaeology is a lot harder of a degree to obtain than one in English. It’s also way more boring.
Admittedly, the life of an archaeologist probably isn’t as exciting as the Nazi-punching adventures of Dr. Jones.
Yet every once in a while, a discovery is made in the field of archaeology that is crazy interesting.
The following finds in archaeology may be lesser known than the Ark of the Covenant, but they’re still super cool and also not filled with ancient spirits that will melt your face off.
1. The Unfinished Obelisk
Recently found in Aswan, Egypt, the obelisk was ordered by Hatshepsut in the mid 1500s BC and could have been the largest Egyptian obelisk ever erected–if it were completed.
It must have been awkward for the Egyptian slavemasters to force their slaves to make most of an obelisk, but then be like, “Psych, nah, we don’t want it anymore.”
2. Göbekli Tepe
This find was so significant that it made archaeologist rethink what we know about the origins of human society. When it was found near a mountain top in Turkey, the structure was found to pre-date agriculture (9,000-10,000 BCE), confirming that church or worship were the beginnings of civilization – not commerce.
3. L’Anse aux Meadows
This ancient settlement was believed to have been built by Vikings. The fact that it could support up to 160 people isn’t what makes it interesting. The fact that it was built 500 years before Columbus “discovered” North America is what makes this find incredible.
This complex fortress sits on the outskirts of Cusco, Peru, the former capital of the Incan empire. The rocks are so tightly fit together you can’t even slip a piece of paper between them.
Also, the Incans managed to build this without mortar. If you know anything about construction (I don’t), this is pretty important to the process.
Built in 2600 BCE, this town which lies in modern-day Pakistan is one of the first examples of modern city planning. The town contains roads, and even a drainage system that worked like a sewer.
6. The Longyou Grottoes
Located in Zhejiang, China, these man-made caves date all the way back to 212 BCE. The most interesting part about them are the meticulously made markings that run along the walls and ceiling that are all evenly spaced at a 60 degree axis.
7. Stone Spheres of Costa Rica
Not much is truly known about the spheres, except that they were probably made by the Diquis people that lived from 700 to 1530 AD. There is a local myth that they are relics from the lost city of Atlantis. This thing weighs about 15 tons!
8. Yonaguni Monument
There is still some debate from archaeologists over whether or not the underwater monument off the coast of Japan is man-made or not. It features two twin monoliths that appear to have been placed, in addition to this pictured structure, known as “The Turtle”.
The arguments of its origins: the flat edges and 90 degree angles would suggest this was man made, but the fact that it’s very much under the ocean water would suggest not.