The seekers of traces of aliens from space are looking for all the new “sacrifices” among the ancient buildings, in order to declare them the work of cosmic guests. To megaliths seriously have not reached! A strange after all. So they ask for modern mythology, these grand structures erected at the behest of ancient mythology.
What are the megaliths
Megaliths “Giant stones” in translation. Or rather, the structures of giant stones.
Of course, no matter how big the “pebbles” of which megaliths consist, nevertheless, any of them is inferior to the plates of the famous Traliton of the Baalbek terrace, some even from the Egyptian pyramids. The blocks that make up the megaliths usually weigh only tons, and three hundred tons for them is already a maximum, a kind of record. Another thing is that there are megalithic structures from many hundreds of such “pebbles”.
But if the pyramids were built on the land of a great and powerful civilization occupying the most honorable place in history, in a country that has long been inhabited more than densely, and all the pyramids are concentrated, roughly speaking, on several “patches” in the Nile Valley, then the megaliths are scattered in a strip width hundreds, and even thousands of kilometers. And the length of this strip is amazing.
Who built the megaliths
At first, naturally, it was believed that the megaliths built ordinary giants. Creatures, throwing multi-stones with palm on palm. The Greeks called constructions of large stones cyclopean, because they, quite clearly, built Cyclops, one-eyed giants, one of whom was later blinded by Odyssey. According to another ancient hypothesis, these stones could move themselves – for example, to the music of Orpheus. But the variant with the Cyclops was much more popular.
In the XVIII century, the “giant” version was strongly rejected. And soon they decided in return that the aliens, who were accustomed to burying their dead in their natural caves in their native lands, began to make new artificial caves in the new lands. But the trouble is – in Spain, for example, there are enough ordinary caves, but literally beside them appeared dolmens.
However, let’s look at the names that are different groups of megaliths.
The slab can simply stand upright, and then her name is the word “menhir”, taken from the Celtic language, the ancient inhabitants of France, England, Ireland and some other lands. Another inclined one can lean against this vertical slab. Or on a vertical plate may lie horizontal, so that it comes out like a table for some giant.
The next step to service is a pair of stones, covered with the third, like a roof. This is the simplest dolmen – the word is also Celtic. And no matter how many stones are now connected in a box or chamber with a lid, all such structures are also called dolmens. Often they lead stone galleries or corridors. These stone boxes served as tombs. Where there were no large stones, the camera could be folded from smaller stones. Sometimes, according to a similar plan, the tombs were cut down in the rocks.
Much here depended on the conditions of the area, but not all. The chalk cliffs of Southern England seem to be designed to cut artificial caves into them, but there the dolmens are built on the surface. And in southern Spain in some places near are located megalithic tombs of various types, underground and above-ground. Why some of them are built, while others are carved, is unknown. However, when it comes to megaliths, the word “unknown” among scientists is in great swing. Even regarding the fact that dolmens are funerary structures, archaeologists did not immediately manage to come to an agreement. And so far as to whose tombs it is, the debate continues to this day.
Most of the dolmens were built at the end of the third and the beginning of the second millennium BC, that is, at the end of the Neolithic and in the Bronze Age. There were, however, places where dolmens continued to be built and much later, and those already built were used in many countries as tombs for representatives of more and more new generations. Perhaps this is one of the main reasons why archaeologists have so many ambiguities with megaliths – inside the tombs things left by different eras are mixed together.
Builders megaliths – one people?
So, megaliths seem to be different. But one of the largest English historians, Gordon Child, argued that, despite the diversity of megaliths in this peculiar stone belt connecting England with Japan, one can speak of a general plan for many of them almost regardless of geographic location.
The imagination of scientists has long struck this true or imaginary, but, in any case, a striking similarity. At the same time (which is a century-other century for the Bronze Age), tombs of a similar type appear across the whole Earth, more precisely along the coast of the Pacific, Indian and Atlantic oceans and their seas. And we did not have time to stop trusting the legends about the giants who built megaliths, when new legends appeared, even brighter and more beautiful (although the legends about the “newcomers” were still far away – about the dark XIX century!).
First of all, the place of the giants as builders of the megaliths was taken by people of some unknown, but brilliant and powerful tribe. Naturally, it would seem, to assume that the same people put stones on stones from the Far East to Scotland on similar plans. Not for nothing, almost all megaliths are so clearly to the sea, so stubbornly located in coastal countries. (In the Caucasus, for example, dolmens essentially lined up along the Black Sea coast. Somewhere in the Caucasus they were built and away from the fertile coast, but these “more continental” dolmens all shrink as they move away from the sea, until they finally lose rights to be called megaliths – huge stones.)
However, not a single serious scientist insisted that the people of the megaliths inhabited almost the whole coastal area of the Old World at the same time. It seemed more realistic that the builders of the megaliths — the whole people or the whole tribe — moved, leaving giant structures behind them, like an indelible chain of tracks.
Naturally, again, the opinions that it was for the people, where it came from, where it was going, why and how it disappeared, diverged. Some researchers believed that he was going from east to west. Others insisted on moving it from west to east. Still others talked about immigrants from Sumer who went both east and west, but since there were no megaliths in Mesopotamia, this option quickly disappeared.
The fourth believed that Egypt had sent its scouts to the seas and lands, it was his sales agents, they were missionaries, they persuaded the inhabitants of the areas under their jurisdiction to acquire grandiose tombs and set an example for them. Proponents of this version remembered primarily about the Egyptian pyramids, also because of the giant tombs. According to these scholars, the “sons of the Sun”, immigrants from Egypt, spread throughout the world, smashed the seeds from it, from which the dolmens sprouted. And above all, these travelers settled in places where there were deposits of minerals valuable for their homeland: in Spain, Sardinia, Ireland – near the copper mines; in tin deposits – in Western Ukraine and in England; near gold mining sites in Western France and Ireland; in the Orkney Islands near Northern Scotland, where pearls were mined;
Gordon Child notes that there is indeed a general similarity between the distribution of the tombs of the Bronze Age and the location of important deposits at that time, but a considerable number of tombs are located where no deposits were developed. And most importantly, according to the customs of the Egyptians, the tombs would have to lie next to the remains of treasure people, for the sake of which these people climbed here, but in Denmark amber rarely got into the dolmens, gold and copper are not enough there, and so on. And finally, everywhere in the dolmens there are few or no imported items. This is quite strange if we face the graves of the owners of “trading posts” or people who were under their strong influence. After all, it is known that, say, in the Bronze Age, along with the dear departed, usually the most expensive and most valued objects in society were buried, or, more rarely, at least something personified, representing such objects (clay horse instead of the present, etc.). But in the dolmens for the most part in general there is nothing foreign. In these buildings, which are so similar in appearance, in each country lie primarily the things created by the tribes inhabiting it at that time. This sharply contradicts the idea of one people, who built all the megaliths, wherever they stand.
It must be said, however, that some enthusiasts offered even Atlantes as builders of megaliths. But if you really believe Plato and recognize Atlantis as a reality, you have to remember that dolmens and other structures were built thousands of years after the Platonic death of Atlantis.
No less fantastic was the version of the dolmens as monuments of traveling around the world of the people of the “Pra-Aryan race” – the ancestors of Indo-European peoples. After all, among other things, dolmens stand there where Indo-Europeans have never been – in Korea, in East Africa …
It is necessary to say all the same that sometimes megaliths definitely testify to the movements of the tribes. The megaliths of southern Ethiopia in their similarity with the megaliths of Assam in India transcend the usual borders for megaliths. On both sides of the Indian Ocean there are cylindrical pillars with a rounded top, like carnations with a bonnet, only the height of the “nail” itself is up to four meters. It is difficult not to recognize this as evidence of the journey of the inhabitants of “one of the sides” of the ocean through this very ocean. Of course, it can also be bypassed by land – around the Persian Gulf, through Arabia and the narrow strait separating Yemen from East Africa. But the long-distance maritime flights of Vasco da Gama of the Stone or Bronze Age are not excluded.
For some time, the common name of two tribes was considered a confirmation of such resettlement: there is a tribe of Naga in Ethiopia, and a tribe of Naga in India. Then there was very little in common between the “namesakes”, the version of a single origin was rejected, and at the same time the idea of moving people from India to Africa, who made huge stone “nails”. But rejected not unanimously and not forever.
One way or another, but to the question: “What kind of people built dolmens” – today the most correct answer is not exact, but briefly: “Different”.
Megaliths – a derivative of ideas about the world
Nevertheless, the resemblance of dolmens around the world is striking, and even more striking is the fact that on the scale of history they appear almost everywhere at the same time, moreover, in countries inhabited by peoples with very different economic methods, customs, ideological ideas, in countries that were different levels of historical development. The Neolithic people, the people of the Copper Age and the people of the Bronze Age lived on earth at the same time (as today the Stone Age adjoins the Stone Age somewhere in New Guinea). And those and others, and still others, even to varying degrees, and by no means all, were involved in megaliths, hewn monstrous slabs, piled them on top of each other, arranged in a general order for places separated by many thousands of kilometers.
Obviously, it is necessary to speak here not about the mass movement of this or that people, but about the movement on earth of the totality of ideas about the world. Submissions related to the veneration of the dead. And the farm, which had developed by this time, was already able to feed a multitude of workers, who did not reap or sow, but were dragging huge stones.
This means that in all countries where dolmens appeared, class stratification was already in full swing – otherwise who would have placed these tombs, aren’t they mere mortals? Already appeared to know the exploiters and slave owners. The leaders became kings, the tribal elders turned into aristocrats. All of them needed to underline their power, to symbolically affirm its eternity and inviolability. As the Egyptian pharaohs needed with the same thing with their priests, commanders and officials. And similar reasons caused similar effects. It happens. Mexicans, for example, began to build their pyramids a thousand years after the Egyptians had already ceased to build their own. The time gap here is perceived quite naturally – after all, the Mayans or Aztecs were a few thousand years behind the development of Egypt. And they have connections with Egypt, apparently there were no permanent ones anyway. And the pyramids were.
But here it is necessary to emphasize the difference between the pyramid and the megalith like dolmen or cromlech.
Pyramid and megalith
The shape of the pyramid is such that it is ideal for the symbol of eternity. An ordinary pile of uneven stones, it is necessary to trim them and fold “prettier”, turns into a pyramid. From ancient times, the class state itself was compared with the pyramid, because in each new layer of stones, if you go from the bottom up, there are less and less stones – like people in different layers of class society, and at the top – one stone: the symbol of the ruler. However, probably this comparison, in spite of all its antiquity, nevertheless appeared after the very first pyramid was built. Well, the ancient Egyptians – those, apparently, materialized a bundle of sunbeams in the pyramid, the top of which is the sun. Since the sun was often identified with Pharaoh, the pyramid was also a symbol of power. There are many other explanations …
But if the theories invented to explain the shape of the pyramids and the circulation of people in different lands to this particular form, basically complement each other and fit themselves into a neat pyramid, then the hypotheses of the megaliths repel each other. The arrangement of megaliths is too difficult for coincidences in its plan at different ends of the world to be obtained by chance.
Travel megaliths – a journey of worldviews
It seems to most historians that it is precisely the wandering of megaliths around the world, and not their appearance in every country or at least part of the world on their own, without any influence from their close or distant neighbors. At the same time, it is certainly true that not the same people built the megaliths. Out of this external contradiction, it seems as if only one is possible: from people to people across Europe, Asia and Africa the sum of representations related to megaliths was transferred – not a simple thought of the bravery of a huge funerary structure, but precisely the amount associated with this thought.
By itself, the possibility of such a grand journey of whole systems of views – and it is witnessed, as you can see, very weighty – says a lot about the real relations between the peoples of the distant past. The fact that we still know too little about the megaliths and their builders prevents us from making this fact far-reaching conclusions to many historians. But even what has become known about those and others makes the tribes of our ancestors not quite so dark and separated from each other, as it seemed.
Gordon Child, listing and smashing the most popular assumptions about the common builders of all megaliths, with obvious relief and pleasure goes to people who also often buried their dead in dolmens, but themselves, apparently, lived already centuries later after the dolmens were built. It was here that it was possible, it seemed, to find traces of some convenient people, groups of people who wandered in large parts of Europe. Groups are small – the burials of “wanderers” do not form extensive cemeteries. And almost always and almost everywhere (the exception is ventral Spain) such burials are among the burials of people of other nations.
During the excavations, the traces of these wanderers will be recognized primarily from bell-shaped clay cups. For archaeologists, therefore, the name of the people of bell-shaped cups was fixed to this tribe.
Child sees in the “wanderers” wandering around Europe a handful of armed merchants selling gold and copper, amber and yamsha. Male metallurgists and women involved in pottery traveled with them. Travelers and made cups. Child talks about the cup owners as vehicles for the establishment of trade and other relations between the peoples of Europe. They also spread the new methods of metal processing, in a word, according to Child, they played the role of a sort of “peddlers of culture” in prehistoric Europe! However, their possible progressive role is greatly compromised by one circumstance …
In the famous bell-shaped cups, millet grains are sometimes found, and from the millet they then made heady beer. The power of the people of bell-shaped cups, if it existed, relied to the greatest extent on its “monopoly” on this invigorating drink. “Cup people” soldered the ancestors of those Europeans that thousands of years later they came to North America not only with guns, but also with vodka.
The people of the bell-shaped cups lived a little more than thirty centuries ago – not such a long time. In the end, writing in Egypt and Sumer by that time already existed for two thousand years. We know quite a lot about individual cultures and peoples of that time, but the “cup people” did not have a letter, and the tribes, among whom they lived too, and so far more mysteries are associated with this people than answers to them.
The people of the bell-shaped cups had to have a considerable influence on the culture of Europe. There are scientists who believe that the names of silver and lead in both the Indo-European languages and the Basque language go back to the unknown language of the “cup” people. It is possible that traces of their activities remained in Africa. The center from which came the carriers of this culture was the Iberian Peninsula. In Central Europe, they probably met Indo-European tribes that moved west at about this time to the west.
In this interaction, it is possible that the culture of Europeans forged the threshold of antiquity.
Well, actually the builders of the megaliths, at least some of them, still maintained ties with powerful Mediterranean civilizations. One of them in the gigantic cromlech of Stonehenge holds two rites: a bronze ax and a bronze dagger, a local ax, there are quite a few of them found in England, but the dagger is probably imported, and the point from which it was exported is exactly known: Crete. From Crete to England, from the eastern Mediterranean to the north-western edge of Europe is far enough. And it is possible, and even likely, that at the beginning and middle of the second millennium BC, no Creteans had yet reached England, and the British themselves did not even dream of serious sea voyages. Too many seas and lands lay on this path. Too many nations on it went – nations, not aware of the principles of international law. Bronze daggers moved to England from people to people, through intermediaries. However, not only daggers and not only in England. Treasures of axes and daggers, treasures with Baltic amber beads and Mediterranean beads of opaque glass mark trade routes during the times of the creators of megaliths and the heirs of these creators.
Dangerous was the profession of a merchant at that time. The wanderers had a bad time. The traveler in Central Europe was then exposed to far greater dangers than the traveler to Central Africa in the nineteenth century. Nevertheless, amber beads come from the Baltic to Italy, Greece, gold from Ireland arrives in Crete, Egyptian beads are found by archaeologists in Hungary, Holland, England. All this is already in the first half of the II millennium BC. At the time when the last European megaliths were being built. Once things traveled, they could travel and ceremonies. There could also be notions that the dead could build tombs from huge stones.
Well, the similarity of the plans of megaliths in different countries! It is great, but some general details can be explained without the idea that the people hand over scrupulously designed plans for the tombs to the people.
Or maybe, with the help of such a small number of basic parts, you will not create too much variety unless you specifically try. And in general, the stone box repeats in an enlarged view the main features of the dwelling. And this wave is natural – everywhere people tried to give signs of ordinary houses to the burial structures, and it’s not for nothing that the “coffin” is called “domino” in Ukrainian.
Is it wise that stone boxes girded Eurasia, walking along North Africa? Still, it is tricky. Some megaliths, far from each other, have certain features of similarity that cannot be explained in this simple way.
Historians and archaeologists are trying on megaliths from different sides, dozens of theories and hundreds of hypotheses have already broken on these giant stones. The barrows adjoin the dolmens in a peculiar way. The same idea of fighting death and oblivion, inspired the ancient Egyptians and European, Asian and African megalith builders, and inspired the Sarmatians to build artificial hills of stones and earth. Mounds look different from megaliths, like pyramids. But many historians believe, however, that the creators of the mounds imitated the builders of the pyramids.