Strange maps of the ancient world.

Staggering mystery.

A number of ancient and medieval maps reveal a staggering mystery. With unmistakeable clarity they reveal outlines of territory not officially discovered for hundreds of years later.


     

Strange Maps.

There is a growing belief that extraterrestrials might at one point in human history have bequeathed to our race sophisticated aerial maps showing the lay-out of this planets principal geographical features including the main continents, oceans, and deserts!

Undiscovered Lands.

A firm indication of this influence is the existence in the ancient and medieval world, of maps apparently showing the existence of lands and continents not officially discovered until many hundreds of years later! Additionally these maps appear to show polar regions in the northern and southern hemispheres as they would appear when stripped away of their ice. Add to this the certainty that at least three thousand years before Columbus the ancients of China and Greece both knew the precise location of the Americas, and quite literally you have a mystery that sets the history of the world on end! In particular it raises the obvious question of just how the ancients knew the whereabouts of these continents with such great precision!

Long term communication.

The weight of evidence suggests this knowledge was not confined to merely knowing of these places but must also have involved a prolonged and sustained physical communication of cultures across the whole of the ancient world! But how did this contact first occur? How did peoples separated by vast stretches of ocean, suddenly find the confidence to cross these immense distances of open water, in the sure and certain hope they would find land there?

This is a question of crucial importance. People don’t suddenly load up a boat with provisions and sail into the great blue yonder without knowing where they are going. It would be suicide! Take Colombus for instance. People of the time said the Atlantic was uncrossable! They said there was no land there to find! Yet Colombus was confident! It was a confidence built on ancient records stating that westwards of the Pillars of Hercules there existed a sizeable continent at a distance of barely one months sailing time!

The ancient records were certain of it, and Columbus trusted in them. As history proves, it was a trust that was more than amply rewarded. Let us then take a look at this ancient perception of the world as they knew it, and see if it really is as sensational as the evidence suggests! Let us see if there could indeed be an extraterrestrial connection.

The Piri Reis map.

By far the best known map in this category of unknown territories is the Piri Reis. Devotees of Von Daniken will be well acquainted with it, but for those who may still not have heard of it, here is a brief outline.

The Piri Reis map – a fine example of early cartography – is named after the nephew of a famous Turkish admiral, Kemal Re’is! The map was captured from the Spaniards in a naval engagement, and given to the admiral by a Spanish prisoner who had sailed on three of Columbus’s New World voyages! The map, now heavily annotated in Turkish apparently shows newly discovered lands and territories stretching far south towards the tip of Latin America! In addition the coasts of Africa and South America appear to be in precise latitudinal context!

Aerial Map.

In Chariots of the Gods, Von Daniken claims the strange distortions depicted on the Piri Reis map are explained by the fact that it was a copy of an aerial map or photograph taken at a height of five thousand miles above the Earth! At this height the curvature of the Earth would become highly prominent thus rendering any flat based map in a seemingly distorted perspective! Von Daniken believes the map also shows details of continental Antarctica as it would appear when stripped of its ice! In other words as it would have been thousands upon thousands of years earlier!

Von Daniken gives the following verdict: "Undoubtedly our forefathers did not draw these maps. Yet there is no doubt that these maps must have been made with the most modern technical aids – from the air!" According to Von Daniken such mysteries could only be interpreted in terms of alien involvement!

In his book "Secrets of the Lost Races", author Rene Noorbergen gives details of a remarkable scientific analysis of the map conducted by Professor Charles H Hapgood, and mathematician Richard W. Strachan. Together with students at Keene State College in the United States, they came to the conclusion that the centre of the Piri Re’is map was located on the Alexandria meridian, as it crosses the Tropic of Cancer. Its incredible accuracy baffled the entire team of investigators! Comments Noorbergen: "The map bears irrefutable testimony to a scientific achievement far surpassing the abilities of the navigators and map makers of the Renaissance, the Middle Ages, the Arab world, or any of the ancient geographers. It is the product of an unknown people antedating recognised history!"

Noorbergen continues: "Hapgood contends that the original source maps from which the Piri Re’is was made must have been drawn using a circular grid based on spherical trigonometry, with the focal point situated in Egypt."

To order a copy of Secrets of the lost Races please see the book column on the right.

Critics.

Sceptics remain doubtful of these claims, pointing out that much of the map below the River Plate estuary appears to be ill defined and largely guesswork! Even so the question of its antiquity still poses questions. Beyond doubt the map is a copy of a much earlier original. Colombus is known to have relied on such maps and if it does predate his epic voyage then this alone would make it a map of extraordinary importance. And then of course there is the uncanny impression that this is indeed an aerial projection! Whoever drew it had access to aerial surveying techniques that far ahead of their time.

The Franco Rosselli map.

An even more revealing map is the Franco Rosselli, now kept in the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich. This is a relatively small but richly illustrated copperplate engraving, hand coloured on Vellum by Francesco Rosselli, a renowned Florentine cartographer of the 15th century. Click here for picture.

At the time Rosselli painted his extraordinary world map measuring just 6 X 11 inches, cartography was still a new and experimental art, which makes its revelations all the more astonishing.

A careful study of the Rosselli map shows its its depiction of Antarctica is extremely well painted. Features such as the Ross Sea, and Wilkes Land are particularly easy to identitfy. It becomes clear this is a work of supreme accuracy. In fact the map names this area quite specifically as Antarticus! Even more perplexing is the fact that this extraordinary map was painted around the year 1508, and at that time Antarctica had still to be discovered, and indeed was not sighted until several centuries later! So what is it doing on a 15 th century Florentine map?

Important implications.

Whatever the explanation it means a severe backward revision of Antarctica’s date of discovery! And there are many other implications. For instance, a continent such as Antarctica is no easy place to circumnavigate. Treacherous pack ice can engulf the sturdiest of todays ocean going vessels, and it is well nigh impossible to believe that any sailing ship of the 15 th century was up to the task of surveying the entire Antarctic coastline. This after all runs to many thousands of miles. An undertaking of this magnitude would be barely possible today, let alone four hundred years ago! Yet we have the definite proof that somehow this mapping was completed and the evidence is quite clearly illustrated in this remarkable piece of Florentine cartography!

So where lies the answer to this riddle? Who could possibly have accomplished such a feat? Whatever the answer, it seems plain that the Rosselli map, like the Piri Re’is, must have had to rely on aerial surveying techniques! Any other method is quite unthinkable. True, the map has glaring errors to it, but these occur in more northerly latitudes that ironically were no mystery to the people of the fifteenth century! Like the Piri Re’is map, this Florentine marvel is obviously a copy of a much earlier original. But who could have possessed aerial mapping techniques in the Middle Ages?

Who indeed? The fact is that here yet again we find another map whose existence challenges the cosy status quo of established history!

Orontius Fineus Map.

Other maps broaden the mystery yet further. These include the Orontius Fineus map of 1531, which apparently shows the outline of Antarctic rivers covered by a mile thick glacier, and the Hadji Ahmed map of 1559 that clearly depicts the outline of the Ice Age land bridge that extended between Siberia and Alaska!

Zeno Brothers Map.

Another cartographical mystery is the Zeno brothers map of the 14 th century! The Zeno brothers from Venice were known to have carried out an extensive exploration of the north Atlantic, including parts of Greenland and Iceland, and are even rumoured to have sailed as far as Nova Scotia in Canada! As a result of these voyages the brothers brought back a map of their travels which was lost and then later recovered several centuries later.

Although the map appeared to confirm the fantastic extent of their travels, later scholars were baffled by the fact that it seemed to depict the true outline of Greenland as it would appear when stripped of its ice! There is simply no way the Zeno brothers could have known of this outline, and it became apparent that the map they had relied on must have been a copy of a much earlier original! In addition the map appeared to be based on a polar projection thought to be far beyond the modest abilities of 14 th century cartographers!

"Impossible" voyages.

As well as strange maps we have evidence of "impossible" early voyages, that should never have happened! These are truly incredible feats of navigation dating back to epochs so remote, they become difficult to imagine. One of these is the habitation of Australia, around 30,000 years ago! The fact is Australia never formed part of the south-east Asian mainland. Its history of habitation is consequently late! The question is how did this migration occur ?

Here the only logical explanation is by sea. Yet the strange thing is that man at this time is supposed to have been little more than a hunter gatherer. We hear no mention of him acquiring boat building skills. We hear no mention of him possessing the logistical and navigational capability to span at least 100 miles of open sea ! Yet this is precisely how we are told that prehistoric man reached Australia !

The question has to be asked : How would men of that time know where they were going? After all it’s one thing to sail a boat in confined coastal waters barely a mile or two from the shore, but quite another to sail off to a land so far away that it isn’t even visible! And remember that 30,000 years ago boat building would have consisted of no more than cutting down a likely shaped trunk of a tree and putting it straight in the sea.

It is important to consider these implications because whichever way you look at it there is no avoiding the fact that if 30,000 years ago man did sail to Australia he must have known where his journey would take him. He was hardly likely to load up his tree trunk and point it at the open sea in the hope that he might find land there! That would almost feel like committing suicide.

A probable explanation is that like Colombus these early navigators knew exactly where they were going, and to do this they must have had maps – maps that could only have existed in a geographically cognisant society! Maps that were either drawn up by former advanced periods of human civilisation, or left behind by visiting aliens.

Easter Island.

Another "impossible" voyage is the colonisation of remote Easter Island. This is thought to have occurred around 1000 BC. But who at that time could possibly have known of the existence of this remote speck of rock?

Renowned for its enigmatic stone statues, Easter Island is one of the remotest places on Earth. It is surrounded by thousands of mile of unbroken ocean. Yet despite this, its early colonisers knew precisely where to find it. By all accounts they were artisans of the high Andes plateau; voyagers who travelled thousand of miles to this remote outpost with the express purpose of building their strange statues!

Once again this was not a stab in the dark, but a planned and deliberate attempt to reach a tiny island whose location was known from the outset! A feat that would have been completely impossible without accurate maps! And the origin of these maps? Perhaps a clue can be found in the ancient birdman cult of the early islanders! They believed the bird-men lived in a celestial domain "whose king possessed a reflection of higher values"!

Another element linking Easter Island to alien visitation is the fact that engraved effigies of the creator god Make-Make look surprisingly like a helmeted astronaut!

It is also interesting to note that statues found carved in the ground were not left there through lack of motivation to raise them, but because their eyes looked skywards towards the domain of the bird-men. In fact the original name of Easter Island means "eyes watching the sky". It is exciting to think this may have been to herald the return of the "Bird-men", by whose knowledge the island was discovered!

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