9 Situations When Archaeologists Couldn’t Explain Their Discoveries

Lots of ancient mysteries can never be solved due to many different reasons: the loss of evidence and data, the destruction of archaeological monuments, and so on. But National Geographic archaeologist Fredrik Hiebert thinks that we’re about to make even more wonderful discoveries that can reveal some secrets from the past.

We gathered 9 mysterious cases that can’t be explained even in the 21st century.

9. The Tomb of the Red Queen, Mexico

9 Situations When Archaeologists Couldn’t Explain Their Discoveries

In 1994, archaeologists found a burial chamber in Palenque (the Maya city). They discovered a coffinwith a woman’s remains that were covered with red powder. There were also pearl and nephritis collections inside. Around the skull, there was a diadem and there were pieces of what had been a funeral mask. Studies show that the Red Queen was around 60 years old.

It’s interesting because power could only be inherited by men. Women weren’t honored in such a way that they would be buried with treasures similar to the ones found in the Red Queen’s coffin.

8. Man of La Venta, Mexico, 1947

9 Situations When Archaeologists Couldn’t Explain Their Discoveries

This photo shows archeologists studying a huge Olmec stone head in La Venta, Mexico. 17 heads were found in total and there are so many questions: how did people of that time manage to create such big and heavy statues? Which tools did they use? How did they transport the materials? And why did they actually need such huge heads? Because there are many small statues along with these 17.

7. Winchester rifle, model of 1873

9 Situations When Archaeologists Couldn’t Explain Their Discoveries

This Winchester was found leaning against a tree at Great Basin National Park in Utah. In the 1870s, lots of mines and ranches started to appear in that area. It’s surprising that no one has touched the rifle for over 100 years.

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