Posts Tagged ‘ancient’

The History of the Dead Sea Scrolls 

The Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) are the greatest archaeological find of the 20th century. That still stands to this very day. For thousands of years the Judean Desert held secrets buried in its sands, only to be revealed by a young Bedouin shepherd in 1947. The discovery of these ancient treasures initiated a modern-day adventure into the past, revolutionizing our understanding of history and religion. What one Bedouin shepherd boy found would make archaeological history and would forever solidify the veracity of the Bible and over 2,000 years of history.

The initial announcement about the scrolls prompted feverish searches in the area of the original discoveries. An official archaeological expedition was begun in 1949 which eventually resulted in the discovery of ten additional caves in the surrounding area also containing scrolls. The archaeologists then directed their attention to a small ruin nearby called by its Arabic name – Khirbet (ruins of) Qumran. The scrolls had been stored in haste in the caves as the community fled the encroaching Roman army, which was in Judea to put down the Jewish Revolt of AD 66-70.

The Qumran Caves are a series of caves, most natural, some artificial, found around the archaeological site of Qumran in the Judaean Desert. The caves are only accessible via the Qumran plateau where archaeologist Roland de Vaux discovered pottery kilns in the 1950’s that were used to fire the scroll jars and a two-story building that contained the remains of writing benches & ink wells. Dr. Randall Price has served as Director of Excavations on the Qumran Plateau in Israel since 2002. During the course of his excavations, he discovered remains of ritual meals and deposits of 24 animal bones overlaid with broken pottery that were buried in a ritual manner. The bones and vessels were then buried because they were considered ritual meals and therefore sacred- never to be used again. In other words, these vessels were used in honor for the meal; not for everyday use. So everything was buried together afterwards. These discoveries fully support the connection between the scrolls and the site of Qumran.

Those seven original scrolls were just the beginning. The years between 1951 and 1957 were marked by accelerated activity in both the search for caves and the archaeological excavation of the Qumran site revealing 10 additional scroll caves.  Over 900 scrolls and thousands of fragments have been discovered since in the 11 caves of the Qumran area.

The scrolls are thought to be what my friend & fellow archaeologist Bruce Hall calls them- “God’s Library”. One of the most important contributions of the Dead Sea Scrolls is the numerous Biblical manuscripts which have been discovered. Fragments of every Old Testament book except Esther have been found, as well as many other non-Biblical texts such as the Book of Enoch, the Book of Jubilees, the Book of Tobit, and the Wisdom of Sirach.

The texts are composed in three languages- Hebrew, Aramaic, & Greek. Aramaic was the common language of the Jews of Palestine for the last two centuries B.C. and of the first two centuries A.D. The discovery of the Scrolls has greatly enhanced our knowledge of both the Hebrew & Aramaic languages.  Until those discoveries at Qumran, the oldest manuscripts of the Hebrew Scriptures were copies from the 9th and 10th centuries AD by a group of Jewish scribes called the Massoretes. Doubts about translation errors were settled with the discovery of the entire book of Isaiah found in Cave 1 dated to 125 BC. This is 1,000 years older than the Aleppo Codex (935 AD) which itself was 1,000 years old. When the two texts were compared, the Isaiah scroll was an identical to the later version of Isaiah in more than 95% of the text. The other 5% were spelling variations. This high level of accuracy was also confirmed among the other DSS. As a result, this closed a thousand year gap just a generation from the original scriptures. The witness of the scrolls testify to its preservation throughout the millennia. We can now place great confidence in the veracity of the Old Testament.

Modern Efforts

In 1993, Operation Scroll was launched to survey some 300 remaining caves in the region.  In the course of their surveys, cave 53 was included with its own survey and a small excavation in the floor of the cave. Nothing of major significance was discovered and after a few days, other caves were then surveyed. But there have been no major excavations in the Qumran caves in the last 60 years.  This position would change however when fragments of new DSS were showing up recently on the black market. According to Israeli law, all artifacts found on land or at sea belong to the state. Over the past 15 years there has been an increase in the number of Dead Sea Scroll fragments offered for sale on the black market. Some 300 looters in the last three years (about 100 per year) have been arrested looking for these artifacts in these caves. Most are fined; some are sent to jail.  In 2014, six people who were plundering “the Cave of Skulls” were arrested & jailed.  This has prompted a new initiative by the IAA (Israeli Antiquity Authority) to re-launch Operation Scroll to excavate the other caves as part of a national campaign to recover as many artifacts as possible, particularly scrolls, before they are found by thieves.

Cave 12 Discovery

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Dr. Price served as director of the Qumran Plateau excavations for 10 years and because of its close proximity to Qumran and the other 11 caves, he chose cave 53 to excavate as it had the best potential for new cultural Dead Sea Scroll material. Proper permits were obtained and because of the IAA’s renewed interest, a high priority was placed on our site rolling in their efforts of Operation Scroll into our excavation. Despite a cursory survey of the cave in 1993, there was no major archaeological excavation of the cave itself.  For the first time in over 60 years, new excavations began in the Qumran caves in January 2017 led by Israeli archaeologist, Dr. Oren Gutfeld and co-directed by Dr. Randall Price of Liberty University.

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Over the course of the excavation, numerous pottery shards, neolithic flint tools and arrowheads were excavated in the layers of dirt in the cave floor. A beautiful, decorated stamp seal made of carnelian, a semi-precious stone, was discovered dating the cave was used as far back as the Chalcolithic and the Neolithic periods.

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Until now, it was believed that only 11 caves had contained scrolls until our team made a surprising discovery at the site.  During the final days of the excavation, 3 major broken scroll jars were found hidden in niches deep inside a long tunnel at its rear along with numerous storage jars and lids from the Second Temple period in the east entrance of the cave.  A pair of iron pickaxe heads dating from the 1950s (stored within the tunnel for later use) proving the cave had been looted in the past. All the vessels were broken and their contents removed sometime in the 50’s. There are no records about these scrolls and they seemed to be lost to history by Bedouins raiders.

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However, a broken but complete store jar was discovered with a 7cm leather scroll found in-situ that was once rolled up inside the vessel in the east room of the cave. No archaeologist in the past has ever found a scroll jar with a scroll inside. It was taken to Hebrew University for analysis. After initial analysis, no writing was seen. Nevertheless, this discovery is extremely unique & never before seen by archaeologists.

This small scroll was probably a new mezuzah scroll ready to write on. But this is my theory. They were about 2 1/2” long with a passage from Exodus or Deuteronomy and placed in the entrance of the door or gate. Our scroll is 2.7” long (7cm).  For whatever reason, the people who placed the scrolls here could not return to retrieve it; nor any in the other 11 caves in the Qumran area.

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Although the small scroll is blank, Israeli archaeologist can use it to help deter looters and detect modern forgeries of ancient documents. Much of the document material is supplied by looters who in recent years have been aggressively targeting the Dead Sea caves. It is now known that many of the fragments that entered the black market since 2002 appear to have been forged.

Recently, an article was published by Biblical Archaeology Society (BAS) that seems to refute the designation of the newly designated Cave 12 since no scroll with writing was found. Therefore, the article concludes it must not be a scroll cave. This conclusion, however logical, is a rather hasty generalization of the facts. Nonetheless, the question is valid. What constitutes a Dead Sea scroll cave? The assumption is that you have to find a scroll with writing for a cave to be designated a scroll cave. But is that necessarily true?

Let’s examine the archaeological evidence:

1. Store jars excavated in-situ in six different locations.

2. Linen wrappings that once covered the scrolls.

3. Numerous pieces of leather discovered for tying the scrolls. 

4. a 7cm scroll found within a broken store vessel. 

Cave 3 is the only cave where the evidence is similar to Cave 12 where a niche was cut in the side of the cave where the copper scroll was discovered.  All the other Dead Sea Scrolls with the exception of fragments found in Caves 2, 4, & 8 were all obtained on the antiquities market after the Bedouins had sold them. Empty store jars were found in Cave 8 but no scrolls were found-only five badly damaged fragments left by the Bedouins in the dirt.

Experts who came to this new cave saw these jars, linen wrappings and the numerous pieces of leather in situ. For the first time it was possible to view the jars where they had been placed 2,000 years ago. No archaeologist in the history of Qumran cave excavations have ever found scroll jars with even one scroll inside.  These experts included Marcello Fidanzio, author of the Caves of Qumran (Brill 2016), Pnina Shor, the head of the scroll conservation and preservation lab at the Israel Museum, and Dr. Weston Fields, Executive Director of the Dead Sea Scroll Foundation. Even without a scroll with writing, as Prof. Fidanzio has stated, this cave fits the pattern of the other manuscript caves and their is no doubt this is a scroll cave. Cave 12 is certainly unique and the first to produce this kind of evidence & material culture ever seen by archaeologist or scroll scholars. This cave is the first to document such evidence in situ. Therefore, this cave has received its new designation as Q12 (Q = Qumran standing in front of the number to indicate no written scrolls were found).

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However, the work at Cave 12 is not entirely complete. With ongoing excavations, it is indeed possible to find a scroll with writing. But is it necessary for the designation? The answer is no. The archaeological evidence confirms this cave was indeed a scroll cave repository and designated as such by the Israeli Antiquity Authority in February 2017.

Aaron Judkins, Ph.D.

Biblical Archaeologist

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New expedition journal: “In Search of Dead Sea Scrolls: Cave 12” by Aaron Judkins now available at www.AaronJudkins.com

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Click here to read the article.

http://magazine3.journeyofpossibilities.com/13/

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Apocalyptic text is inscribed with ink in Hebrew over a large stone. It’s the Gabriel Revelation also known as the Dead Sea Stone – first published in 2007.

It was discovered around the year 2000 in Jordan near the eastern shore of the Dead Sea.
The so-called Gabriel Stone is authentic and very important for understanding the true roots of Jesus Christ’s messianic conception.

However, this ancient tablet with messianic overtones reputedly from before the time of Christ has been debated in archaeological and biblical circles. While one scholar claims the find could “shake our basic view of Christianity,” a Catholic Professor of Scripture suggests the tablet is actually evidence for the historical probability of Christian belief.

Now, this priceless and unique 2,000-year-old stone artifact is displayed at exhibition opened in Jerusalem. Gabriel Stone is a priceless and unique 2,000-year-old stone artifact, which traces depictions of the Archangel Gabriel in Jewish, Christian and Islamic sacred writings and scriptures. His role is – as a messenger to humans from God – was crucial in the three monotheistic faiths.

The stone is cut on one side, along which two columns – 16 cm wide and about 75 cm in height – are covered with text. The columns are separated by a gap approximately 3.5 cm wide. The inscription is composed of 47 horizontal lines and four vertical lines fixing the columns’ borders. The text contain of 87 lines of which 44 are in the right-hand column and 43 in the left-hand column. The last two lines of the left-hand column are much shorter than the rest, and their ending is marked by diagonal lines.

It’s uncertain if the text begins with the first line of the right-hand column. Was it preceded by text that is now lost? Or perhaps the whole composition was comprised of an additional stone or even more stones. However, archaeologists didn’t find traces of any binding substance (like for example cement) on it.

The Hebrew text is written in the first person that identifies himself three times in the first-person: “I am Gabriel”. He converses with a human figure – a visionary or prophet – to whom he, Gabriel, is apparently communicating a vision.

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The text – very prophetic and apocalyptic – also expresses anxiety over the fate of Jerusalem and reflects the crucial role of angels as intermediaries. It’s an attack on Jerusalem and the hope that God will see to the city’s deliverance for the sake of his servant David, perhaps referring to the Messiah of Davidic descent.

A fascinating aspect of the tablet is that the message is not inscribed by a chisel or stylus as is normal for stone; rather the message has been written with pen and ink. Writing on pottery shards with ink was common—the ancient-world equivalent of memos and instant messaging—but only one other ink-inscribed stone of the era, found at Qumran in the 1950s as part of the DSS archaeological excavations, is known to exist. The Gabriel Revelation stone is the first example of the angel’s name appearing in ink on stone, although earlier mentions of his name are found in the Dead Sea scrolls, according to Adolfo Roitman, curator of the “I am Gabriel” exhibit at the Israel Museum.  At the same time, museum director James Snyder said that “the Gabriel Revelation stone is, in a way, like a Dead Sea scroll written on stone and it’s unique in that respect.”

Controversy over the exact nature of the stone’s text remains. The second or even several “Gabriel Stone” fragments may still be out there, waiting to be discovered. Based on analysis of linguistic patterns and the shape of the script of The Gabriel Revelation stone, it was written towards the end of the first century BC, which means around the time of Jesus Christ’s birth. Thus, the inscription is a pre-Christian text.

The first part of the sacred inscription has the apocalyptic character; it’s about the ultimate destiny of mankind and the world; vanquishing of the Antichrist and its forces of evil. The second part focuses on death and resurrection. The text refers to three leaders – shepherds – sent by God to His people, who were killed in battle. Interesting are the words in the last part of the inscription. These words are the words of the Archangel Gabriel who orders his mysterious and unknown interlocutor – to return to life after three days and says:

“By three days, live.”

The Gabriel’s order written in the 80th line of the inscription, is followed by the further line that states that a leader – a “prince of the princes” – was put to death, and his corpse turned to dung among the rocky crevices.

Although researchers have long debated: who is the man resurrected by Archangel Gabriel, I believe this is a direct reference to the person of Jesus Christ crucified by the Romans and resurrected in three days as foretold by the ancient prophets of the Bible.

Will additional artifacts be found in the future such as the Dead Sea Stone?  New archaeological excavations are under way in Qumran this December. Click here to learn more about the Dead Sea Cave Archaeology Project.

 

 

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Skulls on display at the Paracas History Museum

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LA Marzulli & Dr. Aaron Judkins

Back in 2014, I was asked by LA Marzulli of the Watchers Series fame to be a consulting archaeologist regarding the Paracas skulls in Peru. I wasn’t familiar with the elongated skulls so I was not biased towards one side or the other. I agreed to join the team along with Richard Shaw, Chase Kloetzke, Joe Taylor, Ron Moorehead, Jillian Peck, and Brien Forrester as our tourist guide.

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Chase Kloetzke & Dr. Aaron Judkins in Boliva

When we got to Paracas, we spent five days researching the skulls. I was asked to study four specific elongated skulls. Chase Kloetzke brought her forensic investigative field kit and together with Joe Taylor we got to work.  We were given exclusive permission to unwrap the only known infant elongated skull in Peru. It is estimated at an age of 2,000 years old. The mummy wrapping textile was extremely well preserved displaying colorful sea crabs embroidered into the head wrapping.  We were astonished at the preservation of the skull. In addition to the forensic work, Joe Taylor was given permission by the late Sr. Juan (former director of the Paracas Museum) to mold several of these elongated skulls.

Below is my written report on four elongated skulls from Paracas. This report was originally published in LA Marzulli’s book “On the Trail of the Nephilim Vol. 2”. It is also in my journal the Mystery of the Elongated Skulls.

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Osteological Evaluation of 4 Elongated Skulls from Paracus, Peru ©

by Aaron Judkins, Ph.D. Consulting Archaeologist

February 18, 2014

 

Specimen Number 1:  Infant, elongated skull (15-22 months)

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General observations: 1 intact cranium; intact maxillae; 1 intact mandible

In general, the skull has been remarkably preserved. The general shape of the skull is elongated with red-auburn colored hair still intact. This made evaluation of skull sutures difficult to assess as this obstructed the view.

The general morphology of the individual visible cranial bones is within normal limits. There is the metopic (nasal) and frontal sutures noted which are non-fused. The sagittal suture cannot be assessed e xteriorly via the anterior view due to hair obstruction. However, it is noted via the interior of the skull as seen from the inferior view and is of expected configuration and is non-fused. Sutural bones (Wormian ossicles or Incan Bones) were not possible to visualize due to the hair. The foramina are of expected configuration. The skull is atraumatic with no trepanation noted. Skull measurements were conducted using both straight & elliptical digital calipers. Cranial volume was measured using rice to determine the weight. The weight was then converted from kilograms (kg) to cubit centimeters (cm3) to determine volume. The density of the rice (753 kg/m3) was factored in.

(Cranial capacity is a measure of the volume of the interior of the cranium (also called the brain-case or skull volume). The most commonly used unit of measure is the cubic centimeter or cc. The volume of the cranium is used as a rough indicator of the size of the brain, although this is not an indicator of the potential intelligence of the organism).

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Result: 

Cranial volume: 797 cm3. Normal range for age: 369-961 cm3

Conclusion: 

Although the configuration of the skull is elongated, the cranial volume is within normal limits.

Dentition:

All of the fully erupted teeth are deciduous and in good condition. There are no dental restorations or prostheses. There is no significant attrition.

Fontanelles: 

Unable to assess the  anterior, the posterior, sphenoidal (anterolateral), and the mastoidal (posterolateral) fontanelles due to hair obstruction.

Summary:

1. This is an excellent example of an infant elongated skull. It is not currently possible to reliably differentiate between male and female infant and young child skeletal remains or amongst the major racial groups within subadults.

2. Age assessment of skeletal remains is best done in the context of the entire skeleton. It is important to emphasize that when limited to the skull, age assessment of subadult remains is best done through a coordinated evaluation of such features as dentition and fontanelle closure, as well as radiographs and/or computed tomography (CT) scans. This is particularly key for studies of tooth development (calcification, eruption). However, this testing was not readily accessible nor available during the initial on-site examination. It is important to emphasize that the evaluation of a skull without these methods is preliminary. However, the ability to analyze such remains from the strict perspective of osteology is fundamental for evaluation.

3. Dental Age: Likely 15 – 22 months.Non-Dental: No older than 22 months. Evaluation for age was done by a consulting forensic Peruvian Dentist, Dr. Daniel Mendoza Alarcon who used odontological parameters based purely on visible eruption patterns noted.

4.  In the evaluation of subadult skulls, particularly when studying ‘typical’ eruption patterns, it must be stated that statistical data is based on populations, and may not necessarily be reflective of reality in an individual.

5. It is necessary to note the differences between primary and secondary dentition, eruption patterns, and controversies surrounding the timelines that ‘typify’ those eruption patterns.

6. The probability of Cuneiforme modeling [A specific cradle-boarding technique of the skull with pressure applied to the forehead and back of the skull to produce an artificially conical or truncated cone-shape] should not be ruled out. Differential diagnosis should include “cultural practices” by the Paracas culture.

7.  Applying the scientific principle of Ockham’s Razor; while it does not tell us that the simplest explanation is true, may provide the best explanation based on methodological grounds.

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Senior Juan from the Paracas History Museum holding the infant elongated skull 

 

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Specimen Number 2: Adult, elongated skull (unknown age)

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General observations: 1 intact cranium; intact maxillae; intact mandible (not shown)

The skull is in good condition. The general shape of the skull is markedly elongated (in the anteroposterior plane), has a very high forehead, and a deeply sloping parieto-occipital region. The ectocranial morphology of the individual cranial bones is within normal limits. The foramen magnum is unusually large and the occipital condyles are very large and somewhat elevated although the general morphology of the individual visible cranial bones is within normal limits. The mandible is robust (not shown). There coronal suture is clearly visible with partial fu  sion noted. The sagittal suture is absent. Skull measurements were conducted using both straight & elliptical digital calipers. The hair is red-auburn colored which is mostly non-intact. This made evaluation of skull very easy to assess. The skull is atraumatic with no trepanation noted. Cranial volume was measured using the technique already described above.

Result: 

Cranial volume: 2,390 cm3. Normal range: 1,350-1,750 cm with 1,450 cm3 being average.    

Conclusion:

The cranial volume is much larger and outside of normal parameters.

Dentition:

The dental condition is poor. There is evidence of severe periodontal disease, and only 9 of 32 teeth remain. Caries and severe abrasion are noted.

Features of Sex:

The supraorbital ridges are bulging, and the supraorbital margins are well-rounded. The mastoid processes are large, and suprameatal crests (zygomatic arch extensions) are present. The nuchal area is large but not significantly ridged.

Summary:

1. Adult; probably male although sex and age are not definitively determined.

2. Cranial volume is much larger than expected and outside of normal parameters; unknown etiology.

3. Absence of the sagittal suture; cannot rule out craniosynostosis with marked dolichocephaly.

4. The skull appears to possibly share a few similar Polynesian traits but this is inconclusive at this time.

5. The probability of Tabulate modeling [The most common type of cradle-boarding practiced by the Paracas Culture] should not be ruled out. Differential diagnosis should include “cultural practices” by the Paracas culture.

6. Applying the scientific principle of Ockham’s Razor; while it does not tell us that the simplest explanation is true, may provide the best explanation based on methodological grounds.

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Specimen Number 3: Adult skull (unknown age)

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General observations: 1 intact cranium; intact maxillae; no mandible

The skull is in overall good condition with no hair. The coronal suture is clearly visible with partial fusion noted. The skull is atraumatic with no trepanation noted. The sagittal suture is absent. Two markedly elongated parietal bones are possibly fused at the midline, and a small ridge/elevation sits at what would have been the site of the sagittal suture. The skull exhibits a mild sagittal keel and parietal bossing. The cranial s  utures are otherwise normally configured. The individual visible cranial bones is within normal limits.

Skull measurements were conducted using both straight & elliptical digital calipers.

Cranial volume was measured using the technique already described above.

Result: 

Cranial volume: 1,726 cm3. Normal range: 1,350-1,750 cm with 1,450 cm3 being average.    

Conclusion:

The cranial volume is within normal parameters.

Dentition:

Absence of most of the teeth in the maxillae.

Features of Sex:

Probably male with bulging supraorbital ridges.

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Summary:

1.  Adult; most likely greater than 30 years of age.

2.  Cranial volume is within normal parameters.

3.  Absence of s agittal suture with a mild sagittal keel and parietal bossing. Cannot rule out craniosynostosis with moderate dolichocephaly.

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Specimen Number 4 Adult skull (20-24 yrs of age)

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General observations: 1 intact cranium; intact maxillae; no mandible; Paracas, Peru

The skull is small and in overall good condition. There is no hair. The skull is atraumatic with no trepanation noted. The forehead is somewhat sloping. This specimen has a deviated septum and flattened nasals. The coronal suture is clearly visible. The sagittal suture is absent. In the left temporal suture there are four extra bones. The occipital profile is markedly flat. A large sutural bone (Wormian ossicles or Incan Bones) is noted in the lambdoid suture. The skull has an appearance of having been flattened in the anteroposterior plane.

Skull measurements were conducted usin  g both straight & elliptical digital calipers. Cranial volume was measured using the technique already described above.

Result: 

Cranial volume:  929 cm3. Normal range: 1,350-1,750 cm with 1,450 cm3 being average.

Conclusion: The cranial volume is smaller than normal parameters for an adult skull. Unknown etiology.

Dentition:

Absence of the teeth in the maxillae. There is a one-half inch separation between where the front teeth were. Without the mandible, it is difficult to assess the degree of alveolar prognathism; however, the maxilla suggests at least a mild      degree of prominence.

Features of Sex:

Assessment of sex indicates female characteristics as there is a generalized gracility of the cranium.

Summary:

  1. Adult female; most likely between 20-24 years of age.
  2. Cranial volume much smaller than anticipated for suspected age.
  3. Absence of sagittal suture. Cannot rule out craniosynostosis with marked scaphocephaly.
  4. The nasal appears to possibly share similar Polynesian traits of flattened nasals with a deviated septum.

5. Prominent cranial sha pe anomalies. The probability of Annular modeling should not be ruled out. Differential diagnosis should include “cultural practices” by the Paracas culture.

6.  Applying the scientific principle of Ockham’s Razor; while it does not tell us that the simplest explanation is true, may provide the best explanation based on methodological grounds.

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DISCLAIMER:

This report is meant only as a preliminary examination of the anatomical, anthropology and forensic sciences to learn more about its forensic osteology. Although my evaluation has been done with the original specimens, my evaluation is based solely upon the osteologic material and my opinions are based solely upon the material presented to me.

Cranial capacity was measured using rice to determine the weight. The weight was then converted from kilograms (kg) to cubit centimeters (cm3) to determine volume. Using this method was the only viable method available in the field and can only estimate cranial capacity.

Forensic investigations should also include additional studies that would be undertaken to formulate a basis of accumulated knowledge by forensic anthropologist &/or pathologist and the publishing of a peer-reviewed report. Definitive analysis should include laser scanning, function analysis by FORDISC 3.0 &/or 3D modeling.

My opinions regarding these skulls were made without access to the entire skeletons. This should not be considered a final report or definitive analysis of the specimens.

Aaron Judkins, Ph.D. http://www.AARONJUDKINS.com

REFERENCES:

1. Aufderheide, A. and Rodriguez-Martin, C. (1998). The Cambridge Encyclopedia of Human Paleopathology. Melbourne, Australia: Cambridge University Press.

2. Krogman, W. and Iscan, M. (1986). The Human Skeleton in Forensic Medicine. 2 ed. Springfield, IL: Charles C. Thomas.

3. Matisoo-Smith, E. & Ramirez, J. (2010). Human Skeletal Evidence of Polynesian Presence in South America? Journal of Pacific Archaeology. Vol.1, No.1.

4. Matshes, E. and Lew, E. (2006). Forensic osteology. In Forensic Pathology: Principles and Practice, D. Dolinak, E. Matshes, and E. Lew, Editors. San Diego, CA: Elsevier (Academic Press). 

5. Milner, Richard. “Cranial Capacity.” The Encyclopedia of Evolution: Humanity’s Search For Its Origins. New York: Holt, 1990: 98.

6. Powell, T.V. and Brodie, A.G. (1963). Closure of the Spheno-Occipital Synchondrosis. Anatomical Record, 147: 15-23.

7. Raven, Peter H. & Johnson, George B. Biology. Iowa: Brown, 1995: 443.

8. Scheuer, L. and Black, S. (2000). Developmental Juvenile Osteology. San Diego, CA: Elsevier (Academic Press).

9. Standring, S., Ed. (2005). Gray’s Anatomy: The Anatomical Basis of Clinical Practice. 39 ed. London: Elsevier (Churchill Livingstone).

10. Walker, Alan & Shipman, Pat. The Wisdom of the Bones. New York: Knopf, 1996.

11. Weber, J., et al. (2007). Morphometric analysis of untreated adult skulls in syndromic and nonsyndromic craniosynostosis. Neurosurgical Review, 31(2): 179-188.

Also see: 

Another Bone to Pick…With Peruvian Nephilim/Alien Hybrids

Ancient Elongated Skulls: Alien Remains?

Star Child Skull report here: 

I was asked to examine the “Star Child” skull from Mexico by lead investigator Chase Kloetzke. My prior work with Chase on the elongated Paracas skulls in 2014 for LA Marzulli was published in my journal “The Mystery of the Elongated Skulls“.

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The purpose of my review was to catalog osteological craniofacial features by using visual/objective assessment. The purpose of the second study was to establish the cranial capacity by volume. I had no knowledge of this particular specimen nor its history with prior researchers.

I met Melanie Young the owner of the specimen in Lubbock, TX  of August 2016 where I was speaking at a conference. I was able to examine the skull first hand and noticed immediately the display of the head demonstrates craniofacial disproportion with a large cranium relative to the facial size was very prominent, shallow eye sockets, narrow nasal bridge, and a small face showing prominent aberrant morphology. Below is my professional evaluation of the skull with the osteology report.

 

General observations:

The skull is symmetrical but abnormally shaped with the basic components of a human skull: i.e., a frontal bone, two temporals, two parietals, and an occipital. However, both maxilla and mandible bones are missing and the zygomatic arches are broken.

The skull is atraumatic with no trepanation noted. However, one large irregular shaped square area on the right parietal has been removed by a modern saw tool apparently for past testing (post-mortem). A large area of 109 mm has been removed or broken from the inferior skull completely obliterating the foramen magnum and the occipital condiles. The extensive loss of bone has irreversibly damaged any further examination of this area.

Morphology of this skull is highly aberrant with significant “ballooning” of the cranium noted. Skull thickness is 3.10 mm. There is no evidence of brow ridges. The orbital sockets are unusually shallow measuring a depth of only 0.5 inches. Both parietals are bulged.  All sutures present; non-fused & open. No abnormal widening of the sutures are noted. Atypical fossa in the sagittal suture is noted down to where the foramen magnum should be. Fontanelles are closed. The occipital is abnormally flattened. Two wormian ossicles are noted. The external occipital protuberance is absent from the center of the occipital bone.

Cranial volume:

Skull measurements were conducted using both straight & elliptical digital calipers. Cranial volume was measured using rice to determine the weight. The weight was then converted from kilograms (kg) to cubit centimeters (cm3) to determine volume. The density of the rice (753 kg/m3) was factored in.

Result: Cranial volume: 1640 cm3. Cranial capacity is outside of normal accepted parameters. Etiology unknown.

Summary:

Unable to determine age or sex for this study. No teeth or mandible were present with this specimen at the time of examination. No evidence of artificial or external cradle-boarding is noted. Hydrocephaly should be ruled out. Differential diagnosis should include congenital deformations and/or pathology such as Progeria or Down Syndrome with Brachycephaly which cannot be ruled out. When this specimen is compared to sketches of Brachycephaly, striking similarities in skull shape are notedly apparent. The skull fits the description of Brachycephaly in my professional opinion.

  • This report is an independent, scientific study of the skull based on my assessment of this specimen from a strict forensic and osteological evaluation only.

Copyright 2016 Aaron Judkins, Ph.D.

 

StarChild Skull Drawing

 

References: 

Ali FE, Al-Bustan MA, Al-Busairi WA, Al-Mulla FA, Esbaita EY. (2002). Cervical spine abnormalities associated with Down syndrome. Pubmed.

Altintas AG, Gul Aksoy FG, Altintas CS, Midillioglu IK, Duman S. (1999). Evaluation of findings in Crouzon’s syndrome. Pubmed.

Dihaj S, Abada A, Baha Ali T, Benhaddou M, Rais L, Hamdani M, Amraoui A, Zaghloul K. (2005). Apert syndrome: a reported observation. Pubmed.

E. H. Aylward, PhD, N. J. Minshew, MD, K. Field, BA, B. F. Sparks, BS and N. Singh, BS. (2002). Effects of age on brain volume and head circumference in autism. Pubmed.

Graham JM Jr, Kreutzman J, Earl D, Halberg A, Samayoa C, Guo, X. (2005). Deformational brachycephaly in supine-sleeping infants. Los Angeles, CA 90048, USA.

Hutchison BL, Hutchison LA, Thompson JM, Mitchell EA. (2004). Quantification of plagiocephaly and brachycephaly in infants using a digital photographic technique. Department of Pediatrics, University of Auckland, New Zealand. Pubmed.

Matshes, E. and Lew, E. (2006). Forensic osteology. In Forensic Pathology: Principles and Practice, D. Dolinak, E. Matshes, and E. Lew, Editors. San Diego, CA: Elsevier (Academic Press).

Med-Policy. (2006). Cranial Orthosis. [on line]. Available:  http://www.bluecrosswisconsin.com/provider/medpolicy/policies/OR-PR/cranial_orthosis.html>

McDonald, W. (1999) Forensic Faces. [on line]. Available: http://www.alienufoart.com/ForensicFaces.htm>

Plastic and Craniofacial Surgery. (2006). Craniosynostosis. [on line]. Available: http://www.kidsplastsurg.com/craniosynostosis.html

Venes, D. Thomas, C. Taber, C. (2005). Taber’s Cyclopedic Medical Dictionary. The F.A. Davis Company.

www.utmb.edu/otoref/grnds/congenital-abnormal-101122/congen-abnorm-slides-101122.pdf

Walker, Alan & Shipman, Pat. The Wisdom of the Bones. New York: Knopf, 1996.

 

Also see:

  1. A Bone to Pick with the Starchild Skull
  2. https://manvsarchaeology.wordpress.com/2016/09/25/the-paracas-skulls-an-osteological-evaluation/

 

Fuente-Magna

Fuentes Magna: Rosetta Stone of the Americas?

The Fuenta Magna is a large stone vessel, resembling a libation bowl, that was found in 1958 near Lake Titicaca in Bolivia. It features beautifully engraved anthropomorphic characters, zoological motifs characteristic of the local culture, and, more surprisingly, two types of scripts a proto-Sumerian ancient alphabet and a local language of the ancient Pukara, forerunner of the Tiahuanaco civilization. Often referred to as “the Rosetta Stone of the Americas,” the stone vessel is one of the most controversial artifacts in South America as it raises questions about whether there may have been a connection between the Sumerians and the ancient inhabitants of the Andes, located thousands of miles away.

Titicaca-Lake-in-Bolivia

The Fuente Magna Bowl was found near the world-renowned Titicaca Lake in Bolivia. ( Wikimedia Commons )

The ancient relic was discovered accidentally by a farmer working on a private estate owned by the Manjon family. The owners subsequently delivered it to the city hall of La Paz in 1960 in return for land near the capital. Around the same time, Bolivian archaeologist Max Portugal Zamora learned of its existence and attempted, unsuccessfully, to decipher the unusual inscriptions, not least because he failed to recognize that the writing upon the bowl was a type of cuneiform text dating back some 5,000 years.

The Fuente Magna bowl remained in storage in the Museo de los Metales Preciosos (“Museum of Precious Metals”) for approximately 40 years, until two Bolivian researchers, Argentine Bernardo Biados and archaeologist Freddy Arce, sought to investigate the origins of the mysterious relic. They were eventually put in contact with Maximiliano, a 92-year-old local who, after seeing a picture of the bowl, claimed it was once in his possession. Not realizing its significance, Maximiliano admitted that he had used the bowl to feed his pigs.

Fuente-Magna-Bowl

The Fuente Magna Bowl was found to have two types of scripts engraved on the inside. (Courtesy of Bernardo Biados’s research team)

The two researchers took detailed photographs of the bowl and sent them to epigraphist Dr. Clyde Ahmed Winters, in the hope that he may be able to decipher the inscriptions. Dr. Winters, an ancient languages expert, compared the inscriptions to Libyco-Berber writing used in the Sahara approximately 5,000 years ago. The writing was used by the Proto-Dravidians (of the Indus Valley), Proto-Mande , Proto-Elamites, and Proto-Sumerians. Dr. Winters, in his article “ Decipherment of the Cuneiform Writing on the Fuente Magna Bowl ,” concluded that the writing on the bowl “was probably Proto-Sumerian,” and offered the following translation:

This translations suggests that the Fuente Magna bowl may have been used to make libations to the Goddess Nia to request fertility. The figure on the Fuente Magna, which appears to be in a “Goddess pose,” with open arms and legs spread, is believed to support Dr Winters’ translation.

 

figure-on-the-Fuente-Magna-bowlA figure on the Fuente Magna bowl. (Courtesy of Bernardo Biados’s research team)

If Dr. Winters’ translation is correct, this has major implications for our understanding of both Sumerian civilization and the ancient culture of Bolivia. Researcher  Yuri Leveratto  aptly poses the question: “How is it possible that proto-Sumerian inscriptions were found in a bowl that has been found near the Titicaca Lake, 3,800 meters [2.3 miles] above sea level, thousands of kilometers far away from the area where the Sumerian people used to live?”

According to  Bernardo Biados , the Fuente Magna was most likely crafted by Sumerian people who settled in Bolivia sometime after 2,500 B.C. According to Biados, the Sumerians were known to sail to the distant Indian subcontinent and some Sumerian ships may have made their way around South Africa and entered one of the currents in the area that lead across the Atlantic from Africa to South America.  It is possible that some chose to stay and explore into the Andes, perhaps searching for areas high on the plateau of Bolivia where food was being produced. Yuri Leveratto says, “the Sumerian culture influenced the people of the plateau, not only from a religious point of view, but also in the language. In fact, some linguists have found many similarities between the proto-Sumerian and Aymara languages.”

However, this perspective, and indeed the initial translation work of Dr. Winters has not been without its critics. Jason Colavito, a known skeptic and “debunker,” suggests that there is only a small degree of correlation between the script on the bowl and Proto-Sumerian characters. Colavito points out that the bowl has a highly problematic provenance, and may simply be a hoax. Biados says this is incorrect, citing the overwhelming support from major portions of the academic community.

Fuente-Magna

It is clear that the Fuente Magna bowl remains a matter of contention between academics. It is hoped that further archaeological and linguistic research may help to unravel the story behind this mysterious artifact, as doing so may help to expand our understanding of the great civilizations of our past and their influence throughout the world.

Featured image: Fuenta Magna (Courtesy of Bernardo Biados’s research team) Background: Lake Titicaca in Boliva ( Wikimedia Commons ).

The article ‘ Fuente Magna, the Controversial Rosetta Stone of the Americas ’ was originally published on The Epoch Times and has been republished with permission. 

original post By April Holloway

Another site confirming human fossil footprints in rock found near Tuscon, AZ.

 

Other recent findings in Mexico & Canada:

http://westerndigs.org/oldest-human-footprints-in-north-america-identified/

http://westerndigs.org/ancient-human-footprints-found-on-canadian-island-may-be-oldest-in-north-america/

 

From Ancient Code:

An incredible discovery has been made as researchers have found a rock carving of a Mastodon at the underwater Stonehenge of Lake Michigan.

In 2007, at a depth of twelve meters, researchers found a peculiar set of aligned stones that are believed to be over 10,000 years old.

While searching for shipwrecks, archaeologists from the Northwestern Michigan College came across something interesting at the bottom of lake Michigan. They found mysteriously aligned rocks placed there by ancient man before the area was covered with water. When the discovery was made, researchers couldn’t believe what they were seeing. It’s America’s Stonehenge.

The mysterious rock formation under Lake Michigan
 

The mysterious rock formation under Lake Michigan

According to researchers, the stones located at the bottom of Lake Michigan all measure the same distance across, something that wouldn’t be present if we were looking at a natural formation. The rock formation found at the bottom of Lake Michigan resembles other structures found in England and France, and even those at Nabta Playa, making it very unlikely to be a natural formation.

As if the mysterious rock formation wasn’t enough, after a diving expedition was put together to look at the stones, underwater photographer Chris Doyle found a mysterious stone with an incredible depiction: A Mastodon. This means that the carving must have been made way before the Mastodons were extinct.

Capture ss

The Mastodon rock is perhaps one of the most incredible features of the underwater Stonehenge. Researchers speculate that the rock is made out of granite, a very hard material. For people to carve something onto this rock, they had to use a tool harder than granite. So the logical question is: What could ancient mankind have used 10.000 years ago to carve something onto a granite rock?

Researchers stress that the marks and lines that make out the mastodon figure were precisely carved, the lines were not just “scratched” onto the rock.

The incredible rock formation and the precisely aligned stones circles clearly indicate a man-made structure. The areas around Michigan are witness of early human presence in the American continent which is believed to date back over 25.000 years. In the distant past, the Lake itself did not exist since an Ice Age ruled over the lands and what is now located at the bottom of one of the five Great Lakes of north America, was once on dry land.

The man responsible for this underwater discovery is Mark Holley, professor of underwater archeology at the Northwestern Michigan College. In 2007, he searched for shipwrecks but found, 12 meters below the surface a series of stones arranged in a circle. Adding to this amazing discovery is a relatively large rock which has, on its surface a depiction of a mastodon, an animal that became extinct around 8000 BC.

Close up of the "Mastodon Rock"
Close up of the “Mastodon Rock”

In the region near Lake Michigan, researchers have previously discovered menhirs and petroglyphs. When the first Europeans arrived in the seventeenth century they found that Michigan had thousands of prehistoric mounds. Scholars also found “sacred stones” across the geography of the Great Lakes, stones according to the natives were placed by another race who lived there before. Statues and stone idols erected in various parts were discovered weighing over 100 kilograms.

The underwater Stonehenge of Lake Michigan must have been created before the last Ice Age, when the lake bed was dry and that is, according to researchers, over 12.000 years ago, a time that according to history, mankind couldn’t erect such elaborate constructions.

What does this tell us about history? Is this another piece of evidence that points to the fact that history books, as we know them should be re written? We believe yes.

Original article by:

http://www.ancient-code.com/researchers-find-a-rock-with-a-carving-of-a-mastodon-at-the-underwater-stonehenge-of-lake-michigan/

movie-poster

The latest film documentary in the search for Noah’s Ark. Finding Noah coming to theaters one night only on Oct. 8th, 2015

Go here to find where the film is playing near you & watch the film trailers!

http://www.FindingNoah.com

Hi Everyone,
I just wanted to update you all on the status of Finding Noah. As we previously announced, Finding Noah will have a nationwide theatrical event release through Fathom Events at 650+ theater locations on the night of Thursday October 8th. Please save the date.

Tickets for this One Night Only Event are on sale starting Friday August 28th at: www.fathomevents.com/event/finding-noah

We are still awaiting another 236 additional theater locations from Cinemark to be added to the list. So please do not despair if you cannot find a theater near you at this moment. More screens will be added shortly.

It is now up to each of us to help push it toward success. Please share the date and the ticketing information contained herein with your families, friends, church groups and circles of influence. The more these theaters fill, the more theaters and potential encore dates Fathom will provide for us. Early ticket sales are the greatest indicator of robust interest in the film and will help Fathom make decisions to increase our theater count and add extra event dates.

For those of you interested in group sales, please contact me for further info. Thank you! Let’s make Oct. 8th a great success for Finding Noah!

Don’t forget to go to www.FindingNoah.com to view the film trailers.

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