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Awake2Chaos

Ooparts

75 posts in this topic

I've seen many threads dedicated to individual Ooparts, but not one on the general topic. If there is, forgive me for the redundancy.

I have always found Ooparts interesting; mostly because they challenge Evolutionism. Most in the scientific community will not entertain them because to do so would be career suicide. And no one wants to undertake the task of trying to reconfigure history to accomodate them.

If you are not familiar with Ooparts, they are defined as:

an object of historical, archaeological, or paleontological interest found in a very unusual or seemingly impossible context[1] that could challenge conventional historical chronology by being "too advanced" for the level of civilization that existed at the time, or showing "human presence" well before humans were supposed to exist.

http://en.wikipedia....-place_artifact

For example:

1820 From The American Journal of Science and Arts, 1820 comes the account of an ancient tool discovery. At a quarry near Aixen-Provence, France, in 1788, 40 or 50 feet below ground in a layer of limestone were found coins, petrified wooden handles of hammers, pieces of other petrified wooden tools, and a quarrymen's board. The limestone was 300 million years old.

Here's a list of recorded discoveries: http://s8int.com/page12.html This is just one of many sites out there, but I thought it was a pretty comprehensive list.

What they suggest is that we are clueless as to the evolution of man, and that man has indeed evolved not just once, but over and over again. It raises many questions; if they are authentic and indeed represent many advanced civilizations past; then what happened to those civilizations, and how did man re-emerge and re-establish themselves after their demises?

Definitely a lot of fun to ponder the possibilities.

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To put it in perspective:

The first biologically modern Homo Sapiens evolved around 100,000 years ago in Africa. However, it was until about 50,000 years ago that they developed modern behaviours such as jewelry-making, wall painting, musical instruments, funeral customs, religion, long-distance trade, fishing, advanced language and abstract thought.

Moderator Edit to add source link

2c. Plagiarism and copyright: If you quote text from an external web site then please always provide a source link. Members are asked to copy only as much as is necessary when quoting material from external sources, do not copy and paste entire articles or web pages.

Edited by Daughter of the Nine Moons
2c. Plagiarism and copyright: If you quote text from an external web site then please always provide a source link.

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swissringwatchco5.jpg

not many remembers this one and much less even believes it to be anything other than a hoax ~ much more don;t even want to speak of it ~

but its still one of my favorites ~

:yes:

The watch is a miniature, in the shape of a ring, and thought to be just barely over a century old. But it was a fully functional watch, and it stopped at 10:06 am. On its back, the English word “Swiss” is engraved. It doesn’t take a genius to know that the Chinese use characters, not letters, so it couldn’t be a coincidence.

Much have been made of the characters 'Swiss' engraved on it ... if it was a hoax ... why would anyone for the life of me used the English words instead of Chinese characters ?

~

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Bad Archaeology has a very good section on Ooparts and I highly recommend to anyone "browse through it".

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Bad Archaeology has a very good section on Ooparts and I highly recommend to anyone "browse through it".

I'm sure there's many hoaxes and mis-interpretations....but all of them?

I don't buy that they're all 'mistakes'.

That was an interesting site; my beef with it, however, is it's obviously biased to discount any Oopart as 'bad' archaeology. It would be nice to find a site that doesn't display bias one way or the other, but comes at the topic from a neutral position.

Edited by Awake2Chaos
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I'm sure there's many hoaxes and mis-interpretations....but all of them?

I don't buy that they're all 'mistakes'.

That was an interesting site; my beef with it, however, is it's obviously biased to discount any Oopart as 'bad' archaeology. It would be nice to find a site that doesn't display bias one way or the other, but comes at the topic from a neutral position.

Depends on what sort of 'mistake' is being made. Take the 'crystal lens' Oopart. The people at Bad Archaeology do not deny it functions as a lens, but argue this is coincidental to it's purpose as a piece of jewellry and it is not 'evidence of advanced ancient technology'.

The mistake in this case, is intepreting the artifact in a modern context by utilising our knowledge of lenses. It is an artifact, but it is not an 'Oopart' when placed in the proper, ancient, context of a piece of jewellry.

Edited by Leonardo
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Depends on what sort of 'mistake' is being made. Take the 'crystal lens' Oopart. The people at Bad Archaeology do not deny it functions as a lens, but argue this is coincidental to it's purpose as a piece of jewellry and it is not 'evidence of advanced ancient technology'.

The mistake in this case, is intepreting the artifact in a modern context by utilising our knowledge of lenses. It is an artifact, but it is not an 'Oopart' when placed in the proper, ancient, context of a piece of jewellry.

I agree.

Those that are found embedded in the different geological strata.....how did they get there? Especially the deeper levels of rock beds.

They've got stratigraphy down to a pretty definite science now-a-days.

edit: I've heard people argue the 'flood' theory, that most, if not all, Ooparts can be blamed on a catastrophic flood at some point in our history. Doesn't make sense if you understand how strata are formed.

Edited by Awake2Chaos

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I agree.

Those that are found embedded in the different geological strata.....how did they get there? Especially the deeper levels of rock beds.

They've got stratigraphy down to a pretty definite science now-a-days.

edit: I've heard people argue the 'flood' theory, that most, if not all, Ooparts can be blamed on a catastrophic flood at some point in our history. Doesn't make sense if you understand how strata are formed.

A few notes:

1) "s8int" may not be the most accurate of references, particularly in regards to interpretation (major understatement).

2) Be conscious of the dates of "oopart discoveries", the state of research during the relevant time period, the details/provenience of the "recoveries", the qualifications of the "discoverers", and the state of journalism at the time, particularly in regards to how these factors may be currently misrepresented by certain elements.

3) Should you wish to present specific "ooparts" that are of concern to you, these can likely be addressed.

Lastly, bear in mind that the very origin of the term "ooparts" can be traced to fringe "literature".

Edit: Terminology.

Edited by Swede
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I remembered one and googled it;

The 'London' Hammer, Texas, USA:

The fossilised 'London Artefact' has gained notoriety in recent years following its display in an exhibition of anomalous artefacts in the year 2000. It is a perfect example of the anomalous nature of some archaeological discoveries. On the one hand, we are presented with a hammer, clearly of human design; While on the other hand, it is embedded in a rock found in a region formed of predominantly cretaceous rock.

The Facts:

The rock was found in June, 1934 sitting loose on a rock ledge beside a waterfall near London, Texas. (4)

The site is part of a large geographical zone called the Edwards Plateau. It primarily consists of Cretaceous rock. (4)

A recent radiocarbon-dating test was performed on a sample of wood removed from the interior of the handle. The results showed inconclusive dates ranging from the present to 700 years ago. (4)

The sandstone, within which the hammer has become embedded was dated by dr. A. W. Med of the British Geological Research Centre.

The Hammer is identical to commonly used 19th century miners hammers, of American provenance.

It was soon pointed out by the geologist NCSE researcher John Cole that minerals dissolved from ancient strata can harden around a recent object (5), making it look impressive to someone unfamiliar with geological processes. He said of it:

The stone is real, and it looks impressive to someone unfamiliar with geological processes. How could a modern artefact be stuck in Ordovician rock? The answer is that the concretion itself is not Ordovician. Minerals in solution can harden around an intrusive object dropped in a crack or simply left on the ground if the source rock (in this case, reportedly Ordovician) is chemically soluble (Cole, 1985).

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I'm sure there's many hoaxes and mis-interpretations....but all of them?

I don't buy that they're all 'mistakes'.

Why not? There's nothing to say they can't be. Argument by numbers rarely works anyway. If they're all wrong for a variety of different reasons, they become statistically less significant as a group. If you place them in context with all other conventional archeological finds too, then they can be interpreted as an expected error rate relative to the whole. As it is, you can't even prove most of the older ones even existed since all we have are stories, not the actually alleged ooparts.

That was an interesting site; my beef with it, however, is it's obviously biased to discount any Oopart as 'bad' archaeology. It would be nice to find a site that doesn't display bias one way or the other, but comes at the topic from a neutral position.

You don't think s8int is biased in favor of ooparts?

Edited by Oniomancer
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Why not? There's nothing to say they can't be. Argument by numbers rarely works anyway. If they're all wrong for a variety of different reasons, they become statistically less significant as a group. If you place them in context with all other conventional archeological finds too, then they come across as an expected error rate relative to the whole. As it is, you can't even prove most of the older ones even existed since all we have are stories, not the actually alleged ooparts.

You don't think s8int is biased in favor of ooparts?

Of course s8int is in favor of Ooparts, lol, isn't that obvious? ;)

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I remembered one and googled it;

The 'London' Hammer, Texas, USA:

The fossilised 'London Artefact' has gained notoriety in recent years following its display in an exhibition of anomalous artefacts in the year 2000. It is a perfect example of the anomalous nature of some archaeological discoveries. On the one hand, we are presented with a hammer, clearly of human design; While on the other hand, it is embedded in a rock found in a region formed of predominantly cretaceous rock.

The Facts:

The rock was found in June, 1934 sitting loose on a rock ledge beside a waterfall near London, Texas. (4)

The site is part of a large geographical zone called the Edwards Plateau. It primarily consists of Cretaceous rock. (4)

A recent radiocarbon-dating test was performed on a sample of wood removed from the interior of the handle. The results showed inconclusive dates ranging from the present to 700 years ago. (4)

The sandstone, within which the hammer has become embedded was dated by dr. A. W. Med of the British Geological Research Centre.

The Hammer is identical to commonly used 19th century miners hammers, of American provenance.

It was soon pointed out by the geologist NCSE researcher John Cole that minerals dissolved from ancient strata can harden around a recent object (5), making it look impressive to someone unfamiliar with geological processes. He said of it:

The stone is real, and it looks impressive to someone unfamiliar with geological processes. How could a modern artefact be stuck in Ordovician rock? The answer is that the concretion itself is not Ordovician. Minerals in solution can harden around an intrusive object dropped in a crack or simply left on the ground if the source rock (in this case, reportedly Ordovician) is chemically soluble (Cole, 1985).

There is also the llano hammer which was discovered in an arkose. The arkose is a recently cemented sedimentary rock. The source of the gravel is from an intrusive dated to over a billion years old. The llano hammer is not an oopart. It has been misrepresented as such.

Another object I have recently seen misrepresented as oopart included a crinoid stem claimed to be a 300My old bolt.

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Okay, let me pose this question to you guys and gals:

Are there any Ooparts that seem legit to you, or do they all seem misrepresented/misinterpreted?

That is what I am trying to accomplish with this thread; to see where others stand on them as a whole.

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Reading some of the s8int list I notice that several claim to have discovered nails in stone. Let's suppose that these are true tales. It is likely that the discoverer stated nail when they did not know what they were inspecting. It is likely they found a rutile crystal inside of the quartz. The reports of live animals found buried in deep rocks certainly seems questionable. Back then many small papers inserted "fun facts". These fun facts included the discovery of buttons in lumps of coal. These stories were not true. They were there to delight their readers and they surely did. Many of these stories listed there remind me of the "fun facts" of yesteryear.

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The problem with the oopart listed in that S8int article is that they cannot be located. It would be interesting to examine these items or apply modern techniques of today or tomorrow on them. But, alas these amazing discoveries are just stories today. The human bones in stone and all the rest are gone. That's because they never existed in the first place.

Reading down a bit I finally bumped into a reference to the "American Antiquarian". That newspaper was one of the places many of these "fun facts" were listed.

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The problem with the oopart listed in that S8int article is that they cannot be located. It would be interesting to examine these items or apply modern techniques of today or tomorrow on them. But, alas these amazing discoveries are just stories today. The human bones in stone and all the rest are gone. That's because they never existed in the first place.

Reading down a bit I finally bumped into a reference to the "American Antiquarian". That newspaper was one of the places many of these "fun facts" were listed.

I agree, seeing some of these things and being able to subject them to testing would be helpful, however...

I don't know what exactly it would tell us anyway; carbon dating only goes back semi-reliably...what, 50,000 years?

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I agree, seeing some of these things and being able to subject them to testing would be helpful, however...

I don't know what exactly it would tell us anyway; carbon dating only goes back semi-reliably...what, 50,000 years?

There are many different ways to date items. Dating is only one of the items of interest. Remember that radiation was discovered in 1896. Many of these items precede that date. Today a rock can be x-rayed to examine the fossils inside. EM scopes can examine the fine scale structure of objects. Suppose that the bone was not a human bone. Was it a nail or a rutile crystal. Some objects could even be pseudomorphs. Tests can examine these objects.

I don't really think of the stories in the s8int article as being oopart. They are stories.

I can think of an oopart. Today we might not think of it that way but consider the long and confusing history of the antikytheaia device.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antikythera_mechanism

It looked out of place for decades until it was studied with better and better testing methods until it is now understood to be a highly accurate celestial event predictor.

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Okay, let me pose this question to you guys and gals:

Are there any Ooparts that seem legit to you, or do they all seem misrepresented/misinterpreted?

That is what I am trying to accomplish with this thread; to see where others stand on them as a whole.

I would suggest the thought process behind labelling an artifact as an "Oopart", is the same process behind assigning the variation of species to an act of divine creation. That is, it is the general case of lack of knowledge (or, in some cases, the willful dismissal of knowledge) which leads the thought process.

There has not been, to the best of my knowledge, any alleged oopart which has actually been found, with access to proper research and modern investigative tools/techniques, to be inexplicably "out of place".

Edited by Leonardo
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I agree, seeing some of these things and being able to subject them to testing would be helpful, however...

I don't know what exactly it would tell us anyway; carbon dating only goes back semi-reliably...what, 50,000 years?

Carbon dating requires organic material and is quite good. There are in existence a dozen or more similar radioactive decay techniques that work for various periods of time, including things that work back into the billions of years, more of them based on when the rock was form than when the material died.
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I would suggest the thought process behind labelling an artifact as an "Oopart", is the same process behind assigning the variation of species to an act of divine creation. That is, it is the general case of lack of knowledge (or, in some cases, the willful dismissal of knowledge) which leads the thought process.

There has not been, to the best of my knowledge, any alleged oopart which has actually been found, with access to proper research and modern investigative tools/techniques, to be inexplicably "out of place".

I agree. That is why I brought up the Antikythera device. It was made using precision gears. Until that device had been located it was not known that such gears were being made in ancient times. More knowledge brings such devices into historical perspective.

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My thoughts are that I judge each on its own merit. But it's not easy. It's already been mentionned - websites, books etc have their own bias. And you can't necessarily rely on data sources. I suppose, if you're taking a vote, I do believe there's something in the theory that ancient civilizations might have been up to a whole load of things we don't give them credence for and the proof is the existence of ooparts.

"Are there any ooparts that seem legit to you?"

I always answer a question like this with: the discovery of mica at Teotihuacan.

From Ancient Wisdoms.co.uk :

"The Mica Temple:

Following the discovery of mica in the Pyramid of the Sun, two more sheets, approx' 90 ft square, and laid directly on top of one another, were discovered beneath the stone paved floor of the Mica temple. Trace element testing showed it to originate 2000 miles away in Brazil.
(21)
Similar finds of Mica have been found at some Mayan sites.

The first sheets of mica were found in between two of the upper levels of the Pyramid of the Sun. The discovery occurred in 1906, when the complex was restored. But the mica was removed and sold as soon as it had been excavated, by Leopoldo Batres, the man in charge of the project.

More recently, a “Mica Temple” has been discovered on the site, but this time, the mica has remained in situ. The temple sits around a patio about 300 metres south of the west face of the Pyramid of the Sun. Directly under a floor paved with heavy rock slabs, they found two massive sheets of mica. The sheets are 90 feet square and form two layers, one laid directly on top of the other. As it sits underneath a stone floor, its use was obviously not decorative, but functional.

Mica is a substance containing different metals, depending on the kind of rock formation in which it is found. The type of mica found at Teotihuacán indicates a type that is only found in Brazil, more than 2000 miles away. The same South American mica was found in Olmec sites. It is clear that its presence in Teotihuacán involved a lot of effort – and it thus must have played an important role

As yet there is no satisfactory explanation as to how the Mica sheets (up-to 30cm thick) were transported there over 2000 Miles, nor their significance or purpose in relation to the complex or pyramids.

According to most sources the mica is said to originate from a source in Brazil, over 2000miles distant (suggesting transport by boat), for Example, Childress (3) says of it 'According to expert opinions the mica found at Teotihuacán is a type found only in faraway Brazil', While Fagan (4), calls it 'locally mined mica'. The jury is out on this one.

Mica is used by the electronics industry in capacitor construction, Thermal and electric insulation, Opaque to fast neutrons, and it acts as a moderator in nuclear reactions."

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More recently, a “Mica Temple” has been discovered on the site, but this time, the mica has remained in situ. The temple sits around a patio about 300 metres south of the west face of the Pyramid of the Sun. Directly under a floor paved with heavy rock slabs, they found two massive sheets of mica. The sheets are 90 feet square and form two layers, one laid directly on top of the other. As it sits underneath a stone floor, its use was obviously not decorative, but functional.

Not necessarily.

The layout may be representative of two different phases of construction undertaken generations apart or even by separate cultures. Thus the mica layer may have been original, and decorative, but was overlain by a stone floor that another group decided was more suitable for a floor.

The "it must be functional" and "mica is used in the electronics industry" tropes used in discussions about the 'mica pyramids' are both examples of importing modern knowledge into an ancient context and potentially represents bad archaeology.

Edited by Leonardo
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Not necessarily.

The layout may be representative of two different phases of construction undertaken generations apart or even by separate cultures. Thus the mica layer may have been original, and decorative, but was overlain by a stone floor that another group decided was more suitable for a floor.

The "it must be functional" and "mica is used in the electronics industry" are both examples of importing modern knowledge into an ancient context and potentially represents bad archaeology.

Which also indicates a total ignorance of the electronic function of mica: it is a very poor conductor, so if it has any function at all it is as a isolator or condenser. In both cases it requires metal, not stone, to function.

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I would point out that the comment "Mica is a substance containing different metals" is a bit misleading. Micas are silicates. There are also micaceous minerals which are in general not considered to be micas they simply form flat sheets. Most minerals have varieties dependent on the metals in them: apatites, and feldspars are 2 examples. The isotopic ratios of metals can be used to identify where the mica originated. This has been used to show that mica from North Carolina was in mounds in Ohio. The same mica could have come from New Hampshire, Georgia, Virginia, Maine, or a number of other places, but the isotopic ratio showed it to be from North Carolina.

I am a bit surprised that the mica source has not been correctly identified. Mica is not a rare mineral mineral. It can be found in many places. I give it away to schools for kids to peel into thin layers. Mexico is full of sources for mica. I've seen very fine pieces myself whilein parts of Mexico.

It seems a bit odd to me to claim that the closest source is Brazil. one, it tells me that Brazil has not been identified as the source. Two, it makes me wonder what type of mica this is. From the sounds of it I'll bet it is the common muscovite which can be found in large books.

I'd point out that mica was cut into shape in the Ohio Mounds. It was also cut into shapes and used as decorations in Sudan during ancient times. I saw a beautiful exhibit of that at the Smithsonian years ago.

Edited by stereologist

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It is typical of iron and steel artifacts to rapidly form iron oxide concretions around them as they rust in the ground.

Wiki

Concretion of iron artifacts from a pirate ship:

9531054134_83f6fc91b6.jpg

How this works. Page 77 of this google book.

Harte

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