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Great Sphinx rain catchment system


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#46    Harte

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 01:24 PM

View Postlilthor, on 01 December 2011 - 08:01 PM, said:

I don't buy it.  Man has understood the difference between fresh, pure water and river swill for tens upon tens of thousands of years.

Quote

Long before humans learned to rub two sticks together to make fire or took a hammer and chisel in hand to carve out the first wheel, they thirsted for pure drinking water. As we find ourselves in awe of the latest contaminant treatment methods and detection devices, it is easy to forget that the desire for pure drinking water is not a modern phenomenon. Evidence from almost all historical periods suggests that people took measures to ensure a fresh drink of water.

But sometimes that drink came with more than its thirst quenching qualities. Early humans thought that the taste of the water determined its purity, and they did not consider that even the best tasting water could contain disease-causing organisms. We know now that just because water tastes good, it is not necessarily safe to drink. However, the efforts of these water treatment pioneers were not in vain. It was through their trials and errors that we now know how to make water safe to drink.
Source.

Hundreds of thousands of people died in the 1700's and 1800's of water-bourne diseases, all across Europe.  This number was almost certainly at least replicated, if not doubled or tripled, in Asia.

As I said, a thoughtless claim with absolutely no basis in fact whatsoever.

View Postlilthor, on 01 December 2011 - 11:41 PM, said:

Those who drank straight river water were likely bottom-rungers who had to cope with diarrhea, guinea worms, and other maladies.
Here you are claiming that these "bottom rungers" were mummified and entombed in rich people's mortuaries in Ancient Egypt.

Another thoughtless idea completely devoid of any factual basis.

Harte

Edited by Harte, 02 December 2011 - 01:26 PM.

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#47    The Gremlin

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 01:57 PM

View Postpatrickgiles, on 02 December 2011 - 08:06 AM, said:

I've read this before, but you will note that the people had no other source of water in that particular story. They were dying from thirst.

im not surprised at your response.....read the passage again.....it marks an event.....because of which noone could drink from the Nile.....suggesting that previously they had indeed drank from the Nile, otherwise why bother to mention it?........again.......ya' know......basic comprehension skills and all...... :hmm:

Quote

Exodus 7:21
And the fish that was in the river died;
and the river stank, and the Egyptians
could not drink of the water of the river;
and there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.

Exodus 7:24
And all the Egyptians digged round
about the river for water to drink;
for they could not drink of the water
of the river.

(KJV)


Edited by lil gremlin, 02 December 2011 - 02:47 PM.

I rarely talk about such things but I once shoveled 18 tons of material in 11 min-
utes. It was under ideal conditions which allowed use of the legs and gravity
but I know no one who could have matched it and I do know work
.
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You claim you do research and then disregard the fact the Pyramids were built by God, which is why no man-made computer can replicate it.  The Interpreter

#48    The Gremlin

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 03:13 PM

That Egyptians invented water clarification devices suggests that they had dirty/unsafe water that they wanted to make safe.

http://www.nesc.wvu....ndwc_dwh_1.html

Posted Image

Quote

Image Caption: This ancient Egyptian clarifying device was found pictured on the wall of the tomb of Amenophis II at Thebes. The inscription was carved in 1450 B.C.
Reprinted from The Quest for Pure Water. The history of the 20th Century, by permission. Copyright 1981, American Water Works Association

Quote

Tomb Reveals First Clarifying Device
Pictures of the earliest known clarifying apparatus were first excavated from the walls of 15th and 13th century B.C. Egyptian tombs (see illustration on facing page). The device was pictured in the tomb of Amenophis II and later in the tomb of Rameses II. The ancient Egyptian operators allowed impurities to settle out of the liquid, siphoned off the clarified fluid using wick siphons and, finally, stored it for later use.

another good read: about modern Egyptian water supply and sanitation....

http://en.wikipedia....tation_in_Egypt

also see....

http://www.ancient-e...nile-facts.html

There's lots of lay sites out there with info on the Egyptians and their use of the Nile as a source for drinking water....oddly none mention the Spinx or Pyramids as rainwater catchment devices......

:hmm:

I rarely talk about such things but I once shoveled 18 tons of material in 11 min-
utes. It was under ideal conditions which allowed use of the legs and gravity
but I know no one who could have matched it and I do know work
.
...Cladking
If you were a dragon wouldn't you rather eat fat, alocohol fill, Nordic giants, than stringy little Chinamen?   Draconic Chronicler.
You claim you do research and then disregard the fact the Pyramids were built by God, which is why no man-made computer can replicate it.  The Interpreter

#49    Abramelin

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 03:50 PM

View Postpatrickgiles, on 02 December 2011 - 08:06 AM, said:

I've read this before, but you will note that the people had no other source of water in that particular story. They were dying from thirst.

Stupid people..

Here:

Build a water filter:

You can make a water filter from a cone of birch bark. This cone is then filled with layers of sand, charcoal, grasses, and other materials. Grasses and sand help to trap suspended particles. Charcoal helps to remove bacteria and such. You may have to pass the water through the filter more than once, depending on the size of the filter and what it's made of. Generally speaking, the bigger the filter, and the more layers you have in it, the better.

The birch bark cone will need to have a fairly small hole in the bottom. The cone will have to be tied with cordage to keep it from opening up. Put a few stones in the very bottom, to help hold your filtering materials in place. Then pour in layers of charcoal, grasses, sand, and possibly other materials that you feel will help to filter out suspended particles and perhaps even bacteria.

Once you have constructed the filter, simply pour impure water through the filer, catching it in another container at the bottom
.

Posted Image

http://www.wildwoods...rification.html


#50    questionmark

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 05:04 PM

View Postlil gremlin, on 02 December 2011 - 03:13 PM, said:

That Egyptians invented water clarification devices suggests that they had dirty/unsafe water that they wanted to make safe.

http://www.nesc.wvu....ndwc_dwh_1.html

Posted Image



another good read: about modern Egyptian water supply and sanitation....

http://en.wikipedia....tation_in_Egypt

also see....

http://www.ancient-e...nile-facts.html

There's lots of lay sites out there with info on the Egyptians and their use of the Nile as a source for drinking water....oddly none mention the Spinx or Pyramids as rainwater catchment devices......

:hmm:

Small little detail: that device was invented about 1000 years after the GP was completed. The aim was less to remove germs (as they would not have known one if it bit their behind) but to make the water crystalline and odor free.

That the Ancient Egyptians did not consider contaminated water dangerous can be seen in the standard medical text of the time (Papirus Eber), it recommends: "A measuring glass filled with Water from the Bird pond, Elderberry, Fibres of the asit plant, Fresh Milk, Beer-Swill, Flower                      of the Cucumber, and Green Dates" against polyuria. I guess it might work... but probably the number of parasites ingested would be worse than having problems peeing.

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#51    ShadowSot

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 05:30 PM

View Postlilthor, on 01 December 2011 - 08:01 PM, said:

So we must dial down their IQ to fit the theory that they all drank from a sewer that drains an entire continent.
No, the cases of worms wasn't common. Keep in mind this was thousands of years before the germ theory of disease. People have been drinking water out of rivers for thousands of years.

Also, you are now adjusting the Nile to a sewer to make your theory work.

Quote

I don't buy it.  Man has understood the difference between fresh, pure water and river swill for tens upon tens of thousands of years.
Man hasn't had much of a choice for thousands of years.
You had water, fruit juice, beer, or wine, usually.
The Ancient Egyptians drank a lot of beer, but also a lot of water. The parasites mentioned occurred, but for the most part they had a immune system that was used to what the Nile may through at them.
We know that the elites drank from the Nile as some of their mummies show the same worms.

Quote

I believe they also knew that sex (between male and female) often resulted in babies, even though THAT took nearly a year too.
Yes, though the Ancient Greeks thought that reproduction was solely through the man, that the womb of a woman traveled throughout her body, and that your could successfully reproduce with animals.
They also though your eyes emitted rays like radar which was how you were able to see, and practiced fortune telling by reading entrails.

In the case of the sickness, it was not a common occurrence, they didn't have the medical technology of today (and not having technology does not make you  less intelligent) and at the time if you became sick it was assumed your were cured, either by the gods or by a rival.

It was so much easier to blame it on Them. It was bleakly depressing to think that They were Us. If it was Them, then nothing was anyone's fault. If it was us, what did that make Me? After all, I'm one of Us. I must be. I've certainly never thought of myself as one of Them. No one ever thinks of themselves as one of Them. We're always one of Us. It's Them that do the bad things.
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#52    Sir Wearer of Hats

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 11:36 PM

Whenever I've heard or read the Nile described in ancient times it was as "the reason Egypt was an empire" it provided transportation, fertilised the crops and was the source of water for the Egyptians. If someone's going to claim otherwise, they need to back that up with something. And saying "the Giza complex was a water catchment complex" is one of that extraordinary claims that requires extraordinary proof and saying "the water wasn't safe they must have used something else for their water QED" isn't proof of anything.

How does the Giza complex act as a water purification/collection system?

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#53    questionmark

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Posted 02 December 2011 - 11:37 PM

View PostWearer of Hats, on 02 December 2011 - 11:36 PM, said:

Whenever I've heard or read the Nile described in ancient times it was as "the reason Egypt was an empire" it provided transportation, fertilised the crops and was the source of water for the Egyptians. If someone's going to claim otherwise, they need to back that up with something. And saying "the Giza complex was a water catchment complex" is one of that extraordinary claims that requires extraordinary proof and saying "the water wasn't safe they must have used something else for their water QED" isn't proof of anything.

How does the Giza complex act as a water purification/collection system?

The UFO...Osiris...the beans OK? :devil:

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#54    Aus Der Box Skeptisch

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 12:03 AM

View Postquestionmark, on 02 December 2011 - 11:37 PM, said:

The UFO...Osiris...the beans OK? :devil:
Lol

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#55    kmt_sesh

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 06:32 AM

I've come to the discussion late but haven't had a lot of free time lately. I had been wondering why Mr. Giles has been so absent in the "Well Supported Theory" thread started by cladking, and now I see why. I don't know that there's anything wrong with starting a new thread, although it does seem somewhat redundant given that the entire "Well Supported Theory" discussion is based on the same thing. But now it's specifically the Sphinx's turn, I suppose.

I'm not the only one, obviously, who has a problem with the whole rain-catchment theme, but it's only fair to give Mr. Giles his platform. That's what UM is for. Still, I don't see how the Sphinx complex would've ever worked to catch and keep rain. Any decent aerial photo should be self-explanatory:

Posted Image

When it comes to a sealed and impervious system, it's obvious the Sphinx enclosure would not have worked too well for that purpose. Moreover, nothing in the archaeology of the site shows that the valley temple of Khafre (to the left in the above photo) and the Sphinx temple (to the right) ever formed a solid mass to close off the front or eastern end of the enclosure. There is a slight and steady decrease in elevation here as the complex moves to the east, so any rain falling on the Plateau in enough percentage to collect, would've run freely down, between, and out the east ends of the two temples.

To be sure, I think enough evidence was presented in the "Well Supported Theory" discussion to clarify in the first place that insufficient rain fell in the Old Kingdom for any of this to have worked. But even if rain had been plentiful, why carve out a massive statue inside the Sphinx enclosure or build colossal pyramids and surround them with walls, if all these things were meant to do is collect rain? Seems to me, the more logical approach would've been to build free-standing enclosures with stone pavements. Massive pyramids and a huge man-headed lion right in the middle of the enclosures would've done nothing but hamper rain collection.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Earlier in the thread there was a fair amount of argument over the consumption of water in pharaonic times. Some posters seemed highly incredulous that the ancient Egyptians would've drunk river water from the Nile, as though they ought to have known better. Other posters pointed out the hit-and-miss nature of water-borne illnesses and parasitic organisms such as guinea worms. I would fully have to side with the latter group. Absolutely. The full weight of evidence is with them. Well-preserved human remains recovered from ancient burials have evidenced parasitic organisms such as guinea worms and the worms that caused schistosomiasis. As it happens, schistosomiasis was one of the leading killers in ancient Egypt. It's true the worm that causes this ailment may be introduced by means other than by drinking, but the sheer numbers of deaths caused by schistosomiasis argues otherwise--polluted water was consumed. Of course, ailments caused by guinea worms are by vast majority caused by people ingesting the immature form of these worms--from bad drinking water. As other posters mentioned, at the time people were drinking the water, the worms in their immature forms would've been too small for the naked eye to see.

This should not give anyone license to think of the ancient Egyptians as "stupid," nor is it cause for those who oppose the evidence to suggest arguments about bad drinking water are "stupid." First and foremost a student must divorce himself or herself from modern attitudes and sensibilities. It's not easy to try to see things from the perspective of someone living in the Bronze Age, but it's worse for the student to expect that Bronze Age person to have possessed the medical and scientific knowledge we moderns take for granted. The simple fact is, the main source of drinking water for people living in the ancient Nile Valley was the River Nile.

Wells were in fact dug by the Egyptians, but not many are evidenced in and around the ruins of ancient communities along the river--where the vast majority of the population lived. Wells were more typical at distant quarry sites where water sources were rare. Excavations of these sites have even revealed depressions carved into rocky outcrops so that infrequent rains could collect in them. But this was not the general case among the habitations in the Nile Valley. A good example is the ancient workmen's village known by the Arabic name Deir el Medina. Here lived the men who carved the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings, in the New Kingdom. Deir el Medina is in a remote and rather inhospitable site. It is about a mile distant from the river. No wells were dug there, and in fact it's known that daily teams of workers trekked down to the river and back to collect water for drinking, washing, and cooking.

The image below has been shared in several posts already:

Posted Image

I've tried to find the origin of this image and more information about it, but have come across almost nothing. I can't find it in any of the books in my own library. It appears on several different web pages as a "clarifying device" for water. Most of these web pages state that the image was drawn from a scene found in KV35, the tomb of Amunhotep II (Dynasty 18). I have my doubts about that. I can't be completely certain I'm right, of course, but this is not ordinarily the type of thing depicted in a royal New Kingdom tomb. However, it's possible the scene comes from the mortuary temple of Amunhotep II.

Although numerous web pages describe the image as a "clarifying device" for water, I myself highly doubt this, too. The scene clearly shows a priest at left drinking from the jugs at top while the priest at right pours something into the endmost jug. The distillation of liquids was not known in pharaonic Egypt and what the priest at left is grasping is in fact a straw. Many might not know that ancient straws, often made of wood, have been recovered from archaeological sites in the Near East. Such images are found in other tombs, like this one. What the priest is drinking is almost certainly beer--the jugs atop the cabinet are typical of the iconography for beer jugs. What the priest at right is pouring into the end jug I am not sure, but quite possibly the small flask he's holding up contains honey. This was commonly used as a sweetener for beer. In his right hand he appears to be grasping his scribal kit, a mark of authority and prestige with which priests are commonly depicted.

It's true the fermentation process that produced beer would've killed many if not most of the parasitic organisms that caused gastrointestinal ailments. Thus, beer was generally safer to drink (in moderation, of course). But more important to the Egyptians was the nutritional value of beer. It was a ready energy product and simple to make. This is why it was one of the staples of the diet, along with bread. It's also why children commonly consumed beer, although arguably the variety they consumed was very weak in alcohol and more like an oatmeal than a drink.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It should be remembered that all of the Old Kingdom pyramids were clustered at the very northern end of Egypt. One of the premises of Mr. Giles rain-catchment theme is that it was only in the Old Kingdom when these rain-catchment devices were made, or so I remember him telling me in the "Well Supported Theory" thread. This doesn't seem terribly efficient, however, because tens of thousands of Egyptians in the Old Kingdom lived in the southern regions. Where are their pyramids and Sphinx for catching rain?

Posted Image
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#56    jules99

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 07:26 AM

View Postkmt_sesh, on 03 December 2011 - 06:32 AM, said:

I've come to the discussion late but haven't had a lot of free time lately. I had been wondering why Mr. Giles has been so absent in the "Well Supported Theory" thread started by cladking, and now I see why. I don't know that there's anything wrong with starting a new thread, although it does seem somewhat redundant given that the entire "Well Supported Theory" discussion is based on the same thing. But now it's specifically the Sphinx's turn, I suppose.

I'm not the only one, obviously, who has a problem with the whole rain-catchment theme, but it's only fair to give Mr. Giles his platform. That's what UM is for. Still, I don't see how the Sphinx complex would've ever worked to catch and keep rain. Any decent aerial photo should be self-explanatory:


When it comes to a sealed and impervious system, it's obvious the Sphinx enclosure would not have worked too well for that purpose. Moreover, nothing in the archaeology of the site shows that the valley temple of Khafre (to the left in the above photo) and the Sphinx temple (to the right) ever formed a solid mass to close off the front or eastern end of the enclosure. There is a slight and steady decrease in elevation here as the complex moves to the east, so any rain falling on the Plateau in enough percentage to collect, would've run freely down, between, and out the east ends of the two temples.

To be sure, I think enough evidence was presented in the "Well Supported Theory" discussion to clarify in the first place that insufficient rain fell in the Old Kingdom for any of this to have worked. But even if rain had been plentiful, why carve out a massive statue inside the Sphinx enclosure or build colossal pyramids and surround them with walls, if all these things were meant to do is collect rain? Seems to me, the more logical approach would've been to build free-standing enclosures with stone pavements. Massive pyramids and a huge man-headed lion right in the middle of the enclosures would've done nothing but hamper rain collection.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Earlier in the thread there was a fair amount of argument over the consumption of water in pharaonic times. Some posters seemed highly incredulous that the ancient Egyptians would've drunk river water from the Nile, as though they ought to have known better. Other posters pointed out the hit-and-miss nature of water-borne illnesses and parasitic organisms such as guinea worms. I would fully have to side with the latter group. Absolutely. The full weight of evidence is with them. Well-preserved human remains recovered from ancient burials have evidenced parasitic organisms such as guinea worms and the worms that caused schistosomiasis. As it happens, schistosomiasis was one of the leading killers in ancient Egypt. It's true the worm that causes this ailment may be introduced by means other than by drinking, but the sheer numbers of deaths caused by schistosomiasis argues otherwise--polluted water was consumed. Of course, ailments caused by guinea worms are by vast majority caused by people ingesting the immature form of these worms--from bad drinking water. As other posters mentioned, at the time people were drinking the water, the worms in their immature forms would've been too small for the naked eye to see.

This should not give anyone license to think of the ancient Egyptians as "stupid," nor is it cause for those who oppose the evidence to suggest arguments about bad drinking water are "stupid." First and foremost a student must divorce himself or herself from modern attitudes and sensibilities. It's not easy to try to see things from the perspective of someone living in the Bronze Age, but it's worse for the student to expect that Bronze Age person to have possessed the medical and scientific knowledge we moderns take for granted. The simple fact is, the main source of drinking water for people living in the ancient Nile Valley was the River Nile.

Wells were in fact dug by the Egyptians, but not many are evidenced in and around the ruins of ancient communities along the river--where the vast majority of the population lived. Wells were more typical at distant quarry sites where water sources were rare. Excavations of these sites have even revealed depressions carved into rocky outcrops so that infrequent rains could collect in them. But this was not the general case among the habitations in the Nile Valley. A good example is the ancient workmen's village known by the Arabic name Deir el Medina. Here lived the men who carved the royal tombs in the Valley of the Kings, in the New Kingdom. Deir el Medina is in a remote and rather inhospitable site. It is about a mile distant from the river. No wells were dug there, and in fact it's known that daily teams of workers trekked down to the river and back to collect water for drinking, washing, and cooking.

The image below has been shared in several posts already:

Posted Image

I've tried to find the origin of this image and more information about it, but have come across almost nothing. I can't find it in any of the books in my own library. It appears on several different web pages as a "clarifying device" for water. Most of these web pages state that the image was drawn from a scene found in KV35, the tomb of Amunhotep II (Dynasty 18). I have my doubts about that. I can't be completely certain I'm right, of course, but this is not ordinarily the type of thing depicted in a royal New Kingdom tomb. However, it's possible the scene comes from the mortuary temple of Amunhotep II.

Although numerous web pages describe the image as a "clarifying device" for water, I myself highly doubt this, too. The scene clearly shows a priest at left drinking from the jugs at top while the priest at right pours something into the endmost jug. The distillation of liquids was not known in pharaonic Egypt and what the priest at left is grasping is in fact a straw. Many might not know that ancient straws, often made of wood, have been recovered from archaeological sites in the Near East. Such images are found in other tombs, like this one. What the priest is drinking is almost certainly beer--the jugs atop the cabinet are typical of the iconography for beer jugs. What the priest at right is pouring into the end jug I am not sure, but quite possibly the small flask he's holding up contains honey. This was commonly used as a sweetener for beer. In his right hand he appears to be grasping his scribal kit, a mark of authority and prestige with which priests are commonly depicted.

It's true the fermentation process that produced beer would've killed many if not most of the parasitic organisms that caused gastrointestinal ailments. Thus, beer was generally safer to drink (in moderation, of course). But more important to the Egyptians was the nutritional value of beer. It was a ready energy product and simple to make. This is why it was one of the staples of the diet, along with bread. It's also why children commonly consumed beer, although arguably the variety they consumed was very weak in alcohol and more like an oatmeal than a drink.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It should be remembered that all of the Old Kingdom pyramids were clustered at the very northern end of Egypt. One of the premises of Mr. Giles rain-catchment theme is that it was only in the Old Kingdom when these rain-catchment devices were made, or so I remember him telling me in the "Well Supported Theory" thread. This doesn't seem terribly efficient, however, because tens of thousands of Egyptians in the Old Kingdom lived in the southern regions. Where are their pyramids and Sphinx for catching rain?
Hi kmt_sesh;
Just a little niggle here, micro organisms present in water are more likely to prevent the fermentation process rather than be killed by it, in my current understanding.
Also wasnt it confirmed that ground water levels were substantially higher at the time these monuments were constructed, which might mean another source other than precipitation for water catchment/distribution.
Cheers...Jules

Edited by jules99, 03 December 2011 - 07:28 AM.


#57    questionmark

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Posted 03 December 2011 - 01:57 PM

View Postjules99, on 03 December 2011 - 07:26 AM, said:

Hi kmt_sesh;
Just a little niggle here, micro organisms present in water are more likely to prevent the fermentation process rather than be killed by it, in my current understanding.
Also wasnt it confirmed that ground water levels were substantially higher at the time these monuments were constructed, which might mean another source other than precipitation for water catchment/distribution.
Cheers...Jules

Then the beer would be spoiled, thrown away and no harm done (except the economic loss).

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