Ancient Greeks, Romans, Egyptians, Celts, and other once-great civilizations fascinate present minds not only because of the great things they achieved without the help of modern science and technology, but also because much of their experience and understanding has been lost. The secrets of these civilizations are enticing puzzles to us now.
Many shards of data, traditions, and lore indicate that we have an incomplete picture of human civilization's early days. Whole civilizations, some with advanced technology, may have long since passed. Human culture, at the very least, extends much further back in time than history acknowledges. There are many secrets in our ancient history, yet there may be clues to those riddles all over the world in the shape of buried cities, old architecture, enigmatic hieroglyphics, artwork, and other artifacts.
The world's oldest computer is only roughly 2,000 years older than the "first computer we know of." Indeed, the incredible Antikythera Mechanism — a deteriorated clocklike item discovered among the remnants of a drowned ship – could reveal that complex scientific technology existed far before we ever imagined. This enigmatic Greek device foretold solar eclipses, arranged the calendar into four-year cycles, and is thought to have been invented by famed astrologer and engineer Archimedes. Researchers assume that many more were created about the same time in 100 B.C.E.
Puma Punku is one of four structural layouts of Tiwanaku, South America's ancient Pre-Inca capital. Because the megalithic ruins have been looted since their discovery, specialists believe they have been tainted in every way possible. They are thought to be older than the pyramids, with estimates ranging from 15,000 to 20,000 years old. Its origin was unknown even to the Incas. The enormous stones used in the building were perfectly cut to interlock with one another and display no chisel marks. The builders apparently had a strong grasp of stone-cutting, engineering, and geometry because many of the stones were cut so neatly.
When electronics were not yet invented, what need would ancient people have for batteries? But mysteriously there were batteries made during that time. The Baghdad Battery is a tiny clay jar with an iron rod hanging in a copper cylinder that is soldered shut and sealed with asphalt that was discovered near Baghdad, Iraq in 1936. Since then, replicas have been created that can generate modest amounts of electricity, demonstrating the battery's potential, but the mystery of what the battery was used for will likely never be answered.
The recently found temple complex in south-eastern Turkey, which dates back to the end of the last ice age (12, 000 years ago), has been deemed the most mysterious archaeological discovery of contemporary times. Its construction suggests a degree of expertise and intricacy not previously linked with Palaeolithic civilizations, predating pottery, writing, the wheel, and metallurgy. The site contains 20 round constructions and beautifully carved pillars ranging in height of 18 feet and weighing 15 tons each. No one really knows for sure who built the monument or why, but if they were the first civilization, how did the supposed hunter-gatherers have extensive knowledge of construction and stonework?
The 3,000-year-old Nimrud lens was unearthed in Iraq's Nimrud palace. Scientists and historians have argued the lens's usage since its discovery over a century ago, with one notable Italian professor suggesting the lens was used by the ancient Assyrians as part of a telescope, explaining how the Assyrians understood so much about astronomy. It has a slightly oval shape and is composed of natural rock crystals. The original application of the Nimrud lens has been the subject of much controversy. Some people believe it was used as a magnifying glass or a burning glass to kindle fires by concentrating sunlight, while others believe it was part of a telescope.
When a spark plug was discovered encased inside a 500,000-year-old lump of hard rock, Pseudoarchaeologists and others speculated that the Coso artifact could be evidence of a hyper-advanced ancient society such as Atlantis, alien visitations to prehistoric Earth, or time travelers. To say the least, all of the explanations are improbable, but experts haven't been able to come up with a better one - owing to the fact that the Coso Artifact has inexplicably vanished and is thus unavailable for investigation.
The Phaistos Disc is a mysterious object about which we know very little. It's composed of clay. It could be as old as the second millennium B.C.E. Its origin, significance, and purpose, however, remain a mystery. The disc, which was discovered in Crete, contains 241 imprints of 45 different symbols, some of which are easily recognized as humans, tools, plants, and animals. However, archaeologists have been unable to provide a meaningful examination of its content because no other artifacts from the same historical period have been discovered.
The ancient city of Nan Madol is located off the coast of Micronesia's Pohnpei island. The city is interconnected by a multiplicity of canals and connected via subterranean tunnels and is built on a coral reef exclusively from giant basalt rocks (some weighing up to 50 tons). There are no records of who built the city, when it was established, or why it was built. It was built around 200 BCE, according to radiocarbon dating. The origins of the basalt boulders that make up the city are unknown, as are the methods utilized to transport and stack them up to 50 feet tall and 17 feet thick. Archaeologists have discovered human bones that are significantly larger than those of today's Micronesians in the area.
The Saqqara Bird is a bird-shaped artifact constructed from the wood of a sycamore tree that was discovered during the 1898 excavation of the Pa-di-Imen tomb in Saqqara, Egypt. It dates back to around 200 BC – 2200 years ago, weighing little under 40 grams and having a wingspan of more than 7 inches. Due to a lack of documents and other information, various people have speculated about its purpose. Indeed, the ancient Egyptians were well-versed in aviation principles, but it's unclear how this translated to the artifact.
Costa Rica is home to the massive, giant-sized stone spheres, which date back to 600 A.D. "Las Bolas," or "The Ball," is how the locals refer to them. The majority of these rocks are composed of gabbro, a molten magma-derived rock. They were created before the arrival of the Spanish. Archaeologists believe that inhabitants of ancient culture carved flawless circles out of little stones. Some non-experts, on the other hand, believe that these spheres were utilized for astronomy. Others believe the rocks served as navigational aids. It's merely a guess as to what the genuine reason is.