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Puma Punku is a Pre-Columbian archaeological site in Bolivia that is steeped in wonder and mystery. The architecture found in the ruins astounds archaeologists and historians and has inspired advanced ancient civilization and ancient alien theories. The unique nature of the site raises curiosity regarding its builders, when it was constructed, and its purpose. These mysteries have arisen ever since the Inca civilization first laid eyes on the ruins of a site that was abandoned centuries before they came across it. Stone blocks at Puma Punku, Bolivia. Posnansky was one of the first modern explorers to examine the site but his hypothesis continues to have many supporters.

Many of the smaller stones, including the most ornamental and some of the facing stones, are of igneous andesite and came from a quarry on the shore of Lake Titicaca, about 90 kilometers away. These smaller stones may have been brought across the lake by reed boat, then dragged overland the remaining 10 kilometers. Much is often made of the vast size and weight of the Puma Punku stones, with paranormal websites routinely listing them as up to tons TV's Ancient Aliens went all the way up to tons!

The accepted estimate of this piece of red sandstone's weight is metric tons, equal to US tons. The second largest block is only 85 metric tons, and the rest go down sharply from there. The vast majority of the building material at Puma Punku consists of relatively small and easily handled stones, although many of the most famous are megalithic. The absurd numbers like tons come from much earlier estimates, and have long since been corrected.

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We do not claim to know how the heavy lifting and exquisite masonry was accomplished at Puma Punku, but that's a far cry from saying we believe the Tiwanaku were incapable of it. We simply don't have a record of which of the many possible tools and techniques they used. All around the world are examples of stonemasonry from the period that is equally impressive.

The Greek Parthenon, for example, was built a thousand years before Puma Punku, and yet nobody invokes aliens as the only explanation for its great beauty and decorative detailing that more than rivals Puma Punku's angles and cuts. At about the same time, the Persians constructed Persepolis with its superlative Palace of Darius, featuring details that are highly comparable to Puma Punku.

Stonemasons in India cut the Udayagiri Caves with megalithic doorways that are very similar to those in Puma Punku. The Tiwanaku did magnificent work, but by no means was it inexplicably superior to what can be found throughout the ancient world. It is unnecessary to invoke aliens to explain the structures.

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Curiously, if you do an Internet search for Puma Punku, you'll find it almost universally, and quite casually, referred to as a "port". At least, this is what it's called on the paranormal web pages, which make up the overwhelming bulk of Puma Punku information on the Internet.

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In fact, it's not a port, and it never was a port. To anyone doing even the most basic research or visiting the area, it's a fairly bizarre assertion, considering that Puma Punku was in the middle of a vast farming nation ofpeople.

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Nor are Tiwanaku's structures in locations where they could serve as a port. Puma Punku is just one of several stepped platform constructions that have been excavated at Tiwanaku. If you look at them from above, they're simply squarish enclosures scattered about the area. If you imagine water filling the region - let's pretend just high enough to cover the ground but not the enclosures themselves - then each of these "ports" would be an island unto itself, amid a sea of knee-deep water too shallow to be navigable.

That is, except for the Semi-Subterranean Temple, which being recessed into the ground, would have been underwater.

But even that imaginary scenario presumes that the lake could ever reach Tiwanaku.

It can't. Has this always been the case? At least since the last ice age, yes.

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Because the sediment at the lake's bottom has been accumulating for some 25, years, it's one of the best places to get data about Earth's climate history, and so it's been extensively studied. The paleohydrology of Lake Titicaca is thoroughly known. Currently, the water is at its overflow level. This level has fluctuated about 5 meters in the past century. During the past 4, years, it has dropped as much as 20 meters during drought periods. The maximum it's ever been is about 7 meters above overflow level, which would still locate the shore many kilometers away from Tiwanaku's suburbs and farms.

Most of these same paranormal sources that refer to Puma Punku as a port also state that the ancient shoreline is still visible along the surrounding hills, albeit tilted at a strange angle.

Pumapunku, also spelled Puma Punku, is the remains of a holy site in the jungles of Bolivia that has attracted much attention as of late. The name means "door of the puma," and as far as archaeologists know, Puma Punku was a thriving, ancient town originating somewhere around and C.E.

Ancient lake levels are often visible in such a way - they're quite prominent throughout Death Valley where I often visit, for example. But it makes no sense for Lake Titicaca. The lake would spill off the edge of the plain before it could get as high as Tiwanaku; and there's certainly been no tectonic activity in that time that could have tilted the hills, or mysteriously tilted the hills yet left the Tiwanaku structures level.

Finally, one other feature at Puma Punku is said to have the archaeologists baffled: Carved figures, said to represent an elephant relative called a Cuvieronius, and a hoofed mammal called a toxodon. These both went extinct in the region around 15, years ago, and so some paranormalists have dated Puma Punku to 15, years, apparently based on this alone.

When you hear that an elephant is carved there, it certainly does give you pause, because an elephant is hard to mistake. However, when you look at a picture of what's claimed to be the elephantthis becomes less surprising.

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Tiwanaku art was highly stylized, much like what we're accustomed to seeing from the Maya or the Aztecs. It's actually the heads of two crested Andean Condors facing each other neck to neck, and their necks and crests constitute what some have compared to the tusks and ears of an elephant's face.

The image of the toxodon is known only from rough sketches of a sculpture discovered inand so it's a drawing of indirect evidence of an artist's interpretation of an unknown subject.

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It looks to me like a generic quadruped. Pig, dog, rat, toxodon, name it. So once again, we have an accomplishment by ancient craftsmen whom some paranormalists have attempted to discredit by attributing their work to aliens.

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This is not only irrational, it's a non-sequitur conclusion to draw from the observations. Most people don't know how to intricately cut stones because those are skills we haven't needed for a long time - we've had easier ways to make better structures for a long time.

But this argument from ignorance - that just because we don't know how to do it, nobody else could have figured it out either - is an insufficient explanation. Simply say that you don't know, instead of invoking aliens. This is not only the truth, it accurately represents the findings of science so far; and perhaps most importantly, it leaves the credit for this wonderful contribution to humanity where it belongs: with the Tiwanaku themselves. Please contact us with any corrections or feedback.

Cite this article: Dunning, B.

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Skeptoid Media, 20 Apr This area might have been viewed as the center of the Andean world, attracting pilgrims from far away to marvel in its beauty. These structures transformed the local landscape; Pumapunku was purposely integrated with Illimani mountain, a sacred peak that the Tiwanaku possibly believed to be home to the spirits of their dead.

This area was believed to have existed between heaven and Earth. The spiritual significance and the sense of wonder might have been amplified into a "mind-altering and life-changing experience" [14] through the use of hallucinogenic plants. Examinations of hair samples exhibit remnants of psychoactive substances in many mummies found in Tiwanaku culture from Northern Chile, even those of babies as young as one year of age, demonstrating the importance of these substances to the Tiwanaku.

As was characteristic of civilizations around this time and place, the Tiwanaku actively incorporated human sacrifice into their culture.

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The remains of dismembered bodies have been found throughout the area. Ceramic artifacts depict imagery of warriors, masked with puma skulls, decapitating their enemies and holding trophy skulls, and adorned with belts of human heads with their tongues torn out.

Puma Punku in Bolivia is one of the world's most mysterious ancient sites. This remains true for both academic archaeologists and historians as well as rogue historians who investigate the hypothesis of advanced prehistoric civilizations or ancient assistance from extraterrestrials. Jul 08,   The available dating method is a radiometric dating technique that uses the decay of carbon (14C) to estimate the age of organic materials, such as wood and leather. Stones cannot be dated with the method as there is no carbon decay in stone. Hence, science was only able to find circumstantial evidence for dating Puma Punku. Jun 14,   Another group of archaeologists used the carbon dating method to date the construction of Puma Punku to between AD. People who disagree with this later date often argue that the radiocarbon dating results provided by anthropology professor William H. Isbell of the University of Illinois are inaccurate and provide an unreliable date middleburyfloralvt.com: Alicia Mcdermott.

The Tiwanaku civilization and the use of these temples appears to some to have peaked from AD toby which point the temples and surrounding area may have been home to somepeople. At its peak the Tiwanaku culture dominated the entire Lake Titicaca basin as well as portions of Bolivia and Chile.

This culture seems to have dissolved rather abruptly some time around A and researchers are still seeking answers as to why. A likely scenario involves rapid environmental changepossibly involving an extended drought. Unable to produce the massive crop yields necessary for their large population, the Tiwanaku are argued to have scattered into the local mountain rangesonly to disappear shortly thereafter.

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From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. Pumapunku View at Pumapunku. James Encyclopedia of Anthropology. Doctoral Dissertation, The University of Pennsylvania. Publication no.

Academia Nacional de Ciencias de Bolivia. Technology and Archaeology Workshop. Couture and D. Wiseman and F.

Bolivia Ruins (1966)

El-Baz, eds. Remote Sensing in Archaeology. Springer, New York.

Dating puma punku

Dec 11, d. Tiwanaku: Ancestors of the Inca. Rehren, A. Hauptmann, and J. Muhly, pp. Deutsches Bergbau-MuseumBochum, Germany. Flores, pp.

Andesite megaliths in Puma Punku, will be evaluated by beryllium cosmogenic dating to determine the prehistory date when the stone was quarried and machined. | Check out 'Cosmogenic Dating of Megaliths at Puma Punku' on Indiegogo. May 16,   Puma punku is the name of a large temple complex located near Tiwanaku, in Bolivia, and is part of a larger archaeological site known as Tiahuanacu. The temple's origin is a mystery, but based on carbon dating of organic material found on site, archeologists believe the complex may have been built by the Tiwanaku empire - one of the most. Puma Punku does indeed contain the largest single stone found at any of the Tiwanaku sites, and it's part of its Plataforma Litica, or stone platform. The accepted estimate of this piece of red sandstone's weight is metric tons, equal to US tons. The second largest block is only 85 metric tons, and the rest go down sharply from there.

Instituto de Estudios PeruanosLima. Empires Across the Andes National Geographic. Accessed Nov. Ancient Tiwanaku, Cambridge University Press.

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