Wednesday, June 22, 2022

Amazon's Ancient Cities

Environmental & Science Education, STEM, Society, Culture, Archeology, Global Change

Ed Hessler

I wish that the article in Nature on recent finds, based on powerful evidence of ancient settlements in the Amazon, had more photographs but two images are all that is there. They are still worth taking a look at.

I think you will be surprised by the engineering involved in creating these large island cities. Well-elevated mounds, roads, wells, etc. The societies were highly organized and differentiated.

The finds are based in technology reports Freda Kreier, one known as "lidar--a remote-sensing technology that uses lasers to generate a 3D image of the ground below." she notes that "in 2013, a lidar survey of a valley in Honduras helped lead to the rediscovery of an ancient pre-Columbian city rumoured to exist in the area. The jungle had completely overtaken the settlement since it was abandoned in the fifteenth century, making it all but impossible to see from the air without lidar."

Such finds lead, of course, to more questions and needed research, e.g., perhaps especially the reasons why they "were abandoned after 900 years." Their life span was from around 500 A.D. to 1400 A.D.

"These discoveries," says Kreier, "also counter the narrative that Indigenous peoples were passive inhabitant of the Amazon Basin before the arrival of Europeans" and quotes the observation of archeologist Eduard Neves: "The people who lived there changed the landscape forever.'"

No comments:

Post a Comment