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Experts baffled by mystery stone circles


Posted on Sunday, 2 November, 2014 | Comment icon 34 comments

The deserts of Jordan are home to several of the circles. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 3.0 Jerzy Strzelecki
Experts have been trying to learn the purpose of large stone circles found across the Middle East.
Referred to by archaeologists as "Big Circles", the ring-shaped features are comprised of low stone walls that are typically only a few feet high making it easy for someone to hop over them.

Most of the circles measure around 400m in diameter and there are no openings in the sides or any other defining features.
Experts believe that the rings date back up to 2,000 years however they are no closer to understanding what they were built for.

The circles were first identified back in the 1920s by overflying aircraft however relatively little research has been conducted on them since. Archaeologists are hoping that a recently captured series of high-resolution aerial images will help to shed some light on the mystery.

Source: Live Science | Comments (34)


Tags: Stone Circles, Jordan, Middle East


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #25 Posted by lightly on 4 November, 2014, 21:23
I may have this a bit wrong, but what about using Lidar (sp) to find out what else may have been there. Maybe they're outposts for a large community. They traveled, say for hunting, and wanted similar outposts to use along their routes. Maybe they're deeply religious so they built worshiping centers along the route so they'd always have a place. that seems like a reasonable idea.... they seem to be spread over a very large area? and some of them are on connecting pathways? .. and once again, the fact that they are all of nearly identical size... suggests something ceremonial ? I wonder if peri... [More]
Comment icon #26 Posted by Kashora on 5 November, 2014, 3:47
A massive solar system sculpture maybe? What's it called, archeoastronomy? Maybe they traveled to each circle as the skies changed, like you said, ceremonial. I'm always amazed when I learn about our ancestors using the sky for different things, especially with building structures to match the solstices. I mean, that alone should tell the professionals that these people were far from stupid. I can barely do simple algebra, even after years and years of college, with a calculator, and looking stuff up online. Yet they all managed building perfect alignments.
Comment icon #27 Posted by maximusnow on 5 November, 2014, 16:33
Perhaps they are part of a water collection plant. A material is stretched over the circle with a rock in the center and then condensation drips into a container.
Comment icon #28 Posted by DieChecker on 5 November, 2014, 21:46
Perhaps they are part of a water collection plant. A material is stretched over the circle with a rock in the center and then condensation drips into a container. But it's a quarter mile across. That would be a herking huge tarp.
Comment icon #29 Posted by lightly on 6 November, 2014, 15:05
from Still Water's links : " all but one of which are around 400 meters (1,312 feet) in diameter. Why they are so similar is unknown but the similarity seems "too close to be a coincidence" said researcher David Kennedy. it seems the similarity (nearly exact size of most) is what has them "Baffled" . ? would goat pens or agricultural plots need to be nearly exactly the same size? What was so important about making nearly all of them the same size?
Comment icon #30 Posted by Karasu on 6 November, 2014, 18:32
from Still Water's links : " all but one of which are around 400 meters (1,312 feet) in diameter. Why they are so similar is unknown but the similarity seems "too close to be a coincidence" said researcher David Kennedy. it seems the similarity (nearly exact size of most) is what has them "Baffled" . ? would goat pens or agricultural plots need to be nearly exactly the same size? What was so important about making nearly all of them the same size? Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Comment icon #31 Posted by theotherguy on 6 November, 2014, 19:09
from Still Water's links : " all but one of which are around 400 meters (1,312 feet) in diameter. Why they are so similar is unknown but the similarity seems "too close to be a coincidence" said researcher David Kennedy. it seems the similarity (nearly exact size of most) is what has them "Baffled" . ? would goat pens or agricultural plots need to be nearly exactly the same size? What was so important about making nearly all of them the same size? My guess is that all the circles were made using the same piece of rope, or at least ropes cut to the same size. They're the same size because that ... [More]
Comment icon #32 Posted by Hammerclaw on 14 November, 2014, 11:47
Circles in both ancient and modern times can be utilitarian, religious or commemorative. http://www.bbc.com/news/blogs-eu-29991019
Comment icon #33 Posted by Misanthropic on 15 November, 2014, 2:27
When it comes to stone circles, odd formations, cave paintings and so on. We (the scientists involved) never seem to take certain things into consideration. Things like, the people that made them were just simply displaying their artistic abilities, doodling on a cave wall, were just bored... One ancient says to another, "hey Fred, why don't we arrange these stones in a circle, then go pick some berries?" It's as if these ancient civilizations never had any down time.
Comment icon #34 Posted by lightly on 15 November, 2014, 23:43
http://www.smithsoni...ries-180953237/ He and his colleagues have found 12 circles in Jordan, one in Syria and two in Turkey. An ancient Roman road cuts across one, so they likely predate the Roman Empire. But researchers still have no idea who built the circles or why. The walls are too low to keep in animals, and their precise shape wouldn’t be necessary for pens. http://www.washingto...ne-can-explain/ In all, he found 12 circles in Jordan, another in Syria and two more in southeastern Turkey. Despite the distance separating the circles, they’re strikingly similar, Kennedy doesn’t think the ... [More]


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