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Author Topic: The Pyramids
LadyLockeout
Markdown, the Herald Angels Sing


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I read a book somewhere, I honestly forget which one, that put forth a theory on how Stonehenge was built without cranes. Supposedly they just slowy (over the course of years) raised the upright stones using levers, and while they were raised, packed dirt underneath, until eventually they were standing upright, albeit buried in dirt. When the two were side by side, the flat stone was dragged to the top and placed across, then the stones were dug out again and the process repeated.

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Hell's Granny
Xboxing Day


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quote:
Originally posted by LadyLockeout:
I read a book somewhere, I honestly forget which one, that put forth a theory on how Stonehenge was built without cranes. Supposedly they just slowy (over the course of years) raised the upright stones using levers, and while they were raised, packed dirt underneath, until eventually they were standing upright, albeit buried in dirt. When the two were side by side, the flat stone was dragged to the top and placed across, then the stones were dug out again and the process repeated.

Possibly - but it wouldn't have taken all that long.
I was involved in rasing a modern stone circle
in England just before the Millennium. There were no trilithons, but the stones are full-size standing stones, the tallest being some 15 feet high; not much shorter, as I remember, than the main Stonehenge verticals.
Raising the stones upright took manpower - around 100 people altogether. For each stone, a pit with a levelled-off bottom was dug, and the stone was slid into it. With ropes and a big triangular brace of logs, two teams of people (one on each side) hauled it upright in the pit. Somebody stood by with a plumbline; when he signalled that the stone was standing vertical, another team rapidly filled in the pit and tamped it down. The main stones were aligned using GPS, but that was the only concession to modernity - everything else was ingenuity and musclepower.
The team was only able to get together once every couple of months, so the whole project took just under two years. Stonehenge is more complex, and the builders didn't have trucks to bring the stones to the site. But it wouldn't have taken a great deal longer to build.

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Jason Threadslayer
Let There Be PCs on Earth


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quote:
Originally posted by Dogwater:
I believe the Easter Island statues were raised but progressively piling sones beneath them

Scholars aren't really sure how the Easter Islanders placed moai. There are a variety of theories on how they did it.

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JR
We Three Blings


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quote:
Originally posted by Hell's Granny:
Stonehenge is more complex, and the builders didn't have trucks to bring the stones to the site. But it wouldn't have taken a great deal longer to build.

IIRC it's the ditch/bank and Avenue that was the real bitch, labour-wise. Other than hauling the stones from Wales, at least.

Every two months or so? Well, considering Stonehenge was put together over about 1700 years, it's not like they had to break a sweat, then. [Wink]

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Wintermute
Angels Wii Have Heard on High


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Water Pump
I have only glanced at this site but I thought the basic theory was interesting. I am not saying it is valid at all, but I love to read all the different theories as to why things were built.

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Beachmaster
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Check this guy out. He claims to have rediscovered the techniques used to move large blocks around with no cranes or lifting equipment, just a "modified" lever.


http://www.theforgottentechnology.com/Page1.htm

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Beachmaster
The Red and the Green Stamps


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Check this guy out. He claims to have rediscovered the techniques used to move large blocks around with no cranes or lifting equipment, just a "modified" lever.


http://www.theforgottentechnology.com/Page1.htm

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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quote:
Originally posted by Beachmaster:
Check this guy out. He claims to have rediscovered the techniques used to move large blocks around with no cranes or lifting equipment, just a "modified" lever.


http://www.theforgottentechnology.com/Page1.htm

Ok, he does mention that the ground was muddy and slow-going for moving the 15-ton barn (well, 10 plus bracing), but I'm not convinced (physics-wise) that his "method" can be applied to the blocks in the 200-2000 ton range, over rough terrain and uphill, and in close quarters, as is the case for some pre-historic monuments. Their construction generally precludes his method. Even on sand and gypsum/crushed limestone ramps, the core blocks from the Great pyramid are generally regarded as easily mobile with small teams of men and wooden sledges.

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Silas Sparkhammer
I Saw V-Chips Come Sailing In


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One summer, some many years ago, my sister and about twelve friends raised a small trilathon of standing stones on her ranch. The stones are only about four feet long, generally triangular in shape, and weigh maybe 300 or 400 pounds. They are buried one foot deep, so they stick up about three feet above the ground. The align on the sunrise at midsummer's day.

(I just typoed "midsimmer's" day. Well, it gets hot out here!)

She and her gang used round logs to roll the stones up the hill. They had a large flat cap-stone to put atop the three standing stones, but it broke while they were trying to lift it.

For me, the most memorable aspect of that weekend was when I and another like-minded participant said to one another...

Gosh, it's hot.
Yep. Hot.
That's a lot of work.
Yep. Work.
I'll bet they'd all like ice cream when they're done.
Yep. They sure would.
Let's us drive in to town and get some!
Yep!

Silas

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Bach_girl
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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They have a display in the Field Museum in Chicago w/ a whole Egyptian display and picture explanations of how (in their opinion) the pyramids were constructed. I believe they had an actual block (brick) or whatever it is called from a pyramid, or else it was a replica. The only thing we know for sure is that nobody knows how they did it- for sure. Interesting stuff...

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Linden
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
Originally posted by Silas Sparkhammer:
One summer, some many years ago, my sister and about twelve friends raised a small trilathon of standing stones

Now, that raises the question `Why?' All over the world there are huge great lumps of rock which have been set upright. What gets into people to do it? `Hey, fellers, I've got this great idea...'

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Linden

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Drag, the Magic Puffin
The Red and the Green Stamps


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quote:
Originally posted by Linden:
quote:
Originally posted by Silas Sparkhammer:
One summer, some many years ago, my sister and about twelve friends raised a small trilathon of standing stones

Now, that raises the question `Why?' All over the world there are huge great lumps of rock which have been set upright. What gets into people to do it? `Hey, fellers, I've got this great idea...'
Perhaps because it combines the simple childhood joy of Legos with the perspectively cool feeling of being really small.
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Silas Sparkhammer
I Saw V-Chips Come Sailing In


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quote:
Originally posted by Drag, the Magic Puffin:
quote:
Originally posted by Linden:
quote:
Originally posted by Silas Sparkhammer:
One summer, some many years ago, my sister and about twelve friends raised a small trilathon of standing stones

Now, that raises the question `Why?' All over the world there are huge great lumps of rock which have been set upright. What gets into people to do it? `Hey, fellers, I've got this great idea...'
Perhaps because it combines the simple childhood joy of Legos with the perspectively cool feeling of being really small.
Grin! I suspect that the reasons are varied across the world. In some places, building a temple is to celebrate God or the gods, such as the magnificent Gothic Cathedrals of Europe. (Also to show off how rich you are...) In Egypt, it was to assure eternal life for the Pharoah, and, one assumes, by magical extension, to the nation. (More or less the same reason the Soviets displayed Lenin's body?) For the Stonehenge builders, it seems (?) to have been to celebrate (or assure?) the continued turning of the seasons.

My sister and her friends were just a bunch of bored teenagers, who had just read "Stonehenge Decoded" and thought it was way cool.

(By the way, another friend took a cold chisel and inscribed "Celtic Knotwork" designs on a nearby flat rock surface. I wonder if, 500 years from now, that will perplex some archeologists?)

Silas

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Linden
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
My sister and her friends were just a bunch of bored teenagers, who had just read "Stonehenge Decoded" and thought it was way cool.
Hmm. The `bored teenagers' theory of megalith building. I like it, I like it.

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Linden

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Delta-V
Xboxing Day


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This is a rather interesting possibility - wind. Not much proof that it was done on the pyramids, but they've been able to get it to work in the 3-4 ton range. Still a long way from the 30-ton stones they need to lift.
Researchers Lift Obelisk With Kite to Test Theory on Ancient Pyramids

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Linden
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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One problem with the study of megaliths is that the amount of money available for research on them has much more to do with where they are than with how significant they are. Consequently megaliths in NW Europe get a lot more attention than those in central Africa (the Bouar megaliths have had only one serious archaeological study, and I don't think it's been translated out of the original French).

A second problem is that pyramidiocy spreads practically everywhere.

Put these two problems together, and you get something like this:
http://www.megaliths.co.uk/africa.htm

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Linden

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naharnahekim
I'm Dreaming of a White Sale


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nerdymcnerd:
"the idiots who think aliens must have built the pyramids don't believe Egyptians were white. Therefore, the underlying tone to thier theory is racist."

I think yo;ve solved your own problem right there. "The idiots" that is to say: People dumb enuagh to believe that aliens helped build the pyramids. Why should you care what the underlying cuase is of someones beliefs that ALIENS helped build the pyramids? Even if it is somehow an inherently racist veiw or has under/over/thru tones of racism, we are still talking about a person who believes ALIENS built the pyramids. This persons veiws, and inner workings are not worth considering becuase of all ready apperent flaws in their ability to reason.

This works in a vise versa situation as well:
Me: "Are you a racist?"
Idiot: "Why, yes I am."
Me: " You must also think that aliens built the pyramids."
Idiot: "Well, that certainly seems reasonable to me"
Try using this as a diagnostic tool from now on when you meet people. Remember:

Aliens = Racist & Racist = Aliens

At the risk of sounding like an ass I do think your streching the race issue a little too far in this case.

The reason I think people have trouble copeing with the fact that the pyramids were in fact built by the egyptians is that we just can't imagine anything of that scope happening. Think of what it took to build them, tens of thousands of slaves, I want to say hundreds of years but I don't know for sure, massive amounts of food, water, ropes logs, transport, and on and on and on. Try and find anything in the past hundred years that comes anywhere close to being that huge of a project. It's alot for a person to swallow. We know longer consider our leaders to be literal gods, forced labour isn't a very popular idea anymore, and nowadays a plaque is considered a fitting memorial for most people.

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Open Mike Night
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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quote:
Originally posted by Linden:
quote:
Originally posted by Silas Sparkhammer:
One summer, some many years ago, my sister and about twelve friends raised a small trilathon of standing stones

Now, that raises the question `Why?' All over the world there are huge great lumps of rock which have been set upright. What gets into people to do it? `Hey, fellers, I've got this great idea...'
My opinion: Ego mixed with welfare

You have a ruler with an ego big enough to want a glorification of their life. But more importantly, in a large civilized population, there is need for governmental reallocation of supplies - a project like a pyramid is perfect for it. During growing season, everyone farms, and the government takes a cut through taxes and stores it. during the off season, you go to work on public works projects and the government reallocates the food out to you. Ensures long term survival of the population. They are one big New Deal Project.

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Linden
I'll Be Home for After Christmas Sales


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quote:
in a large civilized population, there is need for governmental reallocation of supplies - a project like a pyramid is perfect for it. During growing season, everyone farms, and the government takes a cut through taxes and stores it. during the off season, you go to work on public works projects and the government reallocates the food out to you. Ensures long term survival of the population. They are one big New Deal Project.
You're probably right about the places with a large civilised population, and you're certainly right about the Pyramids. For a good part of the year, when the Nile was inundating the land, it was impossible to grow anything, so there were lots of poor people with time on their hands to wonder about things like whether Pharoah really was divine. Much better to set them to work.

But what about the places which didn't have a large civilised population on a par with ancient Egypt? Places like neolithic Western Europe, central Africa, Easter Island, and all the many other parts of the world where people have gone to great effort to put up large rocks?

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Linden

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Mr. Fed
Happy Holly Days


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I may have missed this from somewhere else in the thread, but I distinctly remember reading that some black extremists (of the sun people/ice people variety) profess that the pyramids were built supernaturally. This permits them to believe that they were built without slave labor, which, in their worldview, is exclusively an invention of evil whites.

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christmas tree kitapper
It Came Upon a Midnight Clearance


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quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Fed:
I may have missed this from somewhere else in the thread, but I distinctly remember reading that some black extremists (of the sun people/ice people variety) profess that the pyramids were built supernaturally. This permits them to believe that they were built without slave labor, which, in their worldview, is exclusively an invention of evil whites.

Some of them probably do; it wouldn't surprise me if Know_Nothing holds that viewpoint. And of course, not all pyramidiots are white.

As for the slave labor, as I understand it they (i.e. reputable Egyptologists) now believe it was more likely farmers and the like, building mainly during Inundation when they would be idle anyhow.

kitap

edited to make a thought more understandable

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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I'm still confused over the whole "complex"/"complicated" issue in regards to Stonehenge and Khufu's pyramid.

The American Heritage Dictionary, WordNet, Oxford English Dictionary, Dictionary.com, Merriam-Webster and others all use "complicated" in their definition of the adjective "complex", and/or list the two as synonymous, eg:

quote:

complex

adjective
1. a. Consisting of interconnected or interwoven parts; composite. b. Composed of two or more units: a complex carbohydrate.
2. Involved or intricate, as in structure; complicated.


complicate
complicated, complicating, complicates

adjective
1. Complex, intricate, and involved.

So, it would seem that Khufu's pyramid is both more complex and more complicated than Stonehenge, even without factoring in the fact that it was built in 20-ish years and not thousands, just based on the intricacies of the cutting and fitting of 2,300,000 stones with interior passageways and chambers, and incorporating stress-relief.

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heavyhand
Deck the Malls


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quote:
Originally posted by Mr. Fed:
I may have missed this from somewhere else in the thread, but I distinctly remember reading that some black extremists (of the sun people/ice people variety) profess that the pyramids were built supernaturally. This permits them to believe that they were built without slave labor, which, in their worldview, is exclusively an invention of evil whites.

[lol]

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(enter witty tagline here)

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heavyhand
Deck the Malls


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as southpark bigger, longer, uncut says during kartmans solo, brian boitano built the pyramids


some of you will get that

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Silas Sparkhammer
I Saw V-Chips Come Sailing In


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quote:
Originally posted by RoofingGuy:
So, it would seem that Khufu's pyramid is both more complex and more complicated than Stonehenge, even without factoring in the fact that it was built in 20-ish years and not thousands, just based on the intricacies of the cutting and fitting of 2,300,000 stones with interior passageways and chambers, and incorporating stress-relief.

Well, that was my opinion also, but JR held another view, and we mostly just ended up with a gentlemen's disagreement.

Silas

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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Well, as I said, they seem to be synonymous and I'm confused over what the distinction actually is [lol] Any clarification from our wordsmiths might help. [Big Grin]

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I refuse to get into a battle of wits with an unarmed person...

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Laser Potato
I Saw Three Shipments


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On message boards, every time I bring up the fact that they found a Mayan (I think) children's toy that had wheels, suggesting the Mesoamericans DID invent the wheel after all, it's always brushed aside as "dumb luck" or "mere trivia". GRRRRRRRRR.

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Silas Sparkhammer
I Saw V-Chips Come Sailing In


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quote:
Originally posted by Laser Potato:
On message boards, every time I bring up the fact that they found a Mayan (I think) children's toy that had wheels, suggesting the Mesoamericans DID invent the wheel after all, it's always brushed aside as "dumb luck" or "mere trivia". GRRRRRRRRR.

But it *is* mere trivia. It was a toy.

That's like saying that the ancient Greeks had the "steam engine." No, they had a cute little spinning toy. It simply doesn't count.

"The Wheel," as one of the basic "machines," means an actual load-bearing tool, and these were not used in pre-Columbian America.

Um...by the way...nifty name! I'll bet there are conditions under which a potato can indeed be made to lase!

Silas

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Laser Potato
I Saw Three Shipments


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QUOTE]But it *is* mere trivia. It was a toy.

That's like saying that the ancient Greeks had the "steam engine." No, they had a cute little spinning toy. It simply doesn't count.

"The Wheel," as one of the basic "machines," means an actual load-bearing tool, and these were not used in pre-Columbian America.

Um...by the way...nifty name! I'll bet there are conditions under which a potato can indeed be made to lase!

Silas [/QB][/QUOTE]

Eh, you're right. I guess I'm getting too worked-up over this.

BTW, about my name...
It's from this bizarre children's book about two princes in an arms race against each other. As the book progresses, the weapons get more and more insane, and 'laser potatoes' is one of them. Eventually, they run out of money to build weapons with, and finally decide to talk out thier differences instead of blowing each other to smithereens. A stab at Reagan's Star Wars? Maybe...

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I want a lawyer! I want a doctor! I want a cheese sandwich!

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BeachLife
The Bills of St. Mary's


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quote:
Originally posted by Silas Sparkhammer:
quote:
Originally posted by Laser Potato:
On message boards, every time I bring up the fact that they found a Mayan (I think) children's toy that had wheels, suggesting the Mesoamericans DID invent the wheel after all, it's always brushed aside as "dumb luck" or "mere trivia". GRRRRRRRRR.

But it *is* mere trivia. It was a toy.

That's like saying that the ancient Greeks had the "steam engine." No, they had a cute little spinning toy. It simply doesn't count.

"The Wheel," as one of the basic "machines," means an actual load-bearing tool, and these were not used in pre-Columbian America.

Um...by the way...nifty name! I'll bet there are conditions under which a potato can indeed be made to lase!

Silas

It wasn't that they couldn't figure out 'industrial' applications for the wheel, more that the wheel wasn't as useful given the terrain of mesoAmerica.

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Wisdom comes with age, but sometimes age comes alone.
Jack Dragon, On Being a Dragon
Confessions of a Dragon's scribe
Diary of my Heart Surgery

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Sue Bee
Happy Holly Days


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My husband was loaned the Graham Hancock book (Fingerprints Of The Gods) mentioned upthread by JR by a friend. Now, both of these men are reasonably... well, reasonable, and intelligent, but fer crying out loud, they were both spouting crap from this book as if it were fact because he (Hancock) has backed his theories with a bunch of technical mumbo jumbo (for lack of a better term. Now, I like to try to be as open minded as the rest of you, but when you try to tell me that the pyramids & Shinx are much older than assumed, and that there is a map that shows the coastline of Antarctica that is hundreds of years old and tie it together with some astonomy, I am unconvinced.

What I am getting at is if anyone knows of literature that directly refutes this, I would be grateful. I have googled, and not come up with much.

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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It would be a very long post, but I could refute most of Hancock and Bauval's points (and have done so in the past in various places).

I know that Zahi Hawass contests Schoch's age of the Sphinx and some other pyramidiotic claims on his website here.

ETA: I know that most of Hancock/Bauval's stellar "alingments" are just plain wrong, because they take no account of proper motion, even though they go to great lengths to explain precession and how precession makes them "right". I used the Hipparchus data for some of his claims, and the stars were nowhere near where he thinks they were 15,000 years ago.

EDIT to fix my dumb spelling.

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I refuse to get into a battle of wits with an unarmed person...

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nerdymcnerd
Little Sales Drummer Boy


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Don't you mean Zahi Hawass?

ETA: I actually worked with him during my undergraduate archaeology education.

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Skunks hate the sound of industry.

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RoofingGuy
The First USA Noel


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:blush: Oops [Big Grin]

Guess men aren't meant to do 8 things at once [Wink]

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I refuse to get into a battle of wits with an unarmed person...

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Sue Bee
Happy Holly Days


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quote:
Originally posted by nerdymcnerd:
Don't you mean Zahi Hawass?

ETA: I actually worked with him during my undergraduate archaeology education.

nerdy, you've certainly done some very interesting things.


Thanks for the link RG. It is a good start. I would like to see some publications dealing with these "astronomical equations" that Hancock published, and the Piri Reis map as well.

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