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Posted on Friday, July 23 - 2004

Peru's ancient spiral-tailed monkey is losing its tail. Extensive high-resolution aerial photos of the famed Nazca Lines taken by Peru's air force showed destruction Thursday that conservationists have long feared. Tire tracks and disregard for the site are irreparably scarring the mysterious lines and animal figures that a pre-Columbian civilization etched into a 56-kilometre stretch of Peru's southern desert centuries ago. In the first comprehensiveaerial photos taken by Peru's government since 1973, one of the most famous animal figures, the monkey, was crisscrossed by tire tracks nearly obliterating the top of its tail.

The fish and spider lines showed similar scars in the 180 photos taken last month and published in local newspapers. Denouncing the damage, Congressman Luis Gonzales said he would urge legislators to take urgent action to protect the site, which was added to the United Nations World Heritage list in 1994. "This is extremely grave," he said. "When the photographs are presented to theinternational community, it will unleash a scandal because it involves human patrimony." Some of the worst damage has occurred since the death in 1998 of German mathematician Maria Reich, who at 95, had devoted five decades of her life guarding the 450-square-kilometre protected zone.

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Posted on Friday, January 21 - 2011

Scientists have identified two new geoglpyhs of a human head and an animal in Nazca, Peru.Situated close to the Nazca Lines the new geoglyphs are thought to have been missed previously due to their small sizes of between three and four metres in length. The team had previously uncovered almost one hundred glyphs carved in to thedesert in 2006.

The new geoglyphs depict a human head and an animal figure that the researchers have yet to identify, state news agency Andina reported. According to the archaeology faculty chief at Yamagata, Yoichi Watanabe, the drawing of the human head is 4. 2 meters long and 3. 1 m wide.  

View: Full article |  Source: Living in Peru  

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Posted on Saturday, February 27 - 2010

A new National Geographic documentary is revealing the secrets behind who made the Nasca Lines and why.Its one of the most well known spectacles of the ancient world, but exactly who built this extensive series of lines making up giant patterns and shapes in Peru"s southern desert and for what purpose ? Etched, as if by giants, onto the arid moonscape of Peruís southern desert lies one of manís greatest mysteries; the Nasca Lines.

More than 15,000 geometric and animal-like patterns have been discovered criss-crossing the pampas like a vast puzzle. Who built them and what was their purpose?

View: Full article | Source: Edge WestProductions

Views : 1427

Posted on Saturday, January 31 - 2009

The Nazca Lines

Copyright © New Scientist

The ancient, intricate geometric patterns stamped on the surface of a desert in Peru have long been thought of as messages to the gods, or as markers that tracked celestial objects. Now new details about these geoglyphs suggest they may have been made for "prayer walking".The Nasca lines are a collection of lines, giant trapezoids, and figures of humans, plants and animals in a desert 400 kilometres south of Lima, Peru. They were created between 400 BC and AD 650 by the removal of reddish oxidisedstones from the desert pavement to reveal the lighter sand beneath.Tomasz Gorka of Munich University in Germany analysed five geoglyph complexes near the city of Palpa, focusing on the large trapezoidal structures which are etched on the plains there.

He measured anomalies in the Earth's magnetic field caused by changes in soil density at various depths. The team walked the entire site, an area of about 60 hectares, using hand-held sensors. "We found other lines, in the interior of the trapezoid structures, which were not visible from the air," says Gorka, who presented his findings at an archaeological geophysics meeting in London last month. "The geoglyphs visible today are the most recentstage of a prolonged construction process during which the whole complex of drawings was constantly added to, remodelled, obliterated or changed by use," adds Gorka. Some of the lines produced stronger magnetic anomalies than others, prompting Gorka and Karsten Lambers of the University of Konstanz in Germany to suggest that the soil beneath was compacted by people walking back and forth during prayer rituals. "This activity was closely connected to the placing of ceramic vessels along the lines," perhaps as offerings, says Lambers.

Copyright: NewScientist

Views : 1027

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