Artifacts again... - [Le site d'Irna]

Artifacts again...

Article published on 8 June 2007

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Despite the lack of excavation authorization on Visocica Hill, Mr. Osmanagic’s Foundation is continuing its activities, during this 2007 spring, on the unprotected sites, Pljesevica Hill and the two tunnels of Ravne and KTK (according to the name of the company that owns the place where this second tunnel opens); activities which permit it to announce regularly new discoveries, always wonderful and conclusive. So one could witness, during the month of May, a profusion of new "artifacts"; some have a taste of "déjà vu", particularly the sandstone blocks that have multiplied in Ravne tunnel: an egg-shaped sandstone block "possibly showing the landscape of Visoko valley", or, near it, another block (bs) that "will remain at the same location for further archaeological analysis".

Sedimentary features

Other "artifacts" are much more original, and would probably rejoice greatly any sedimentologist. The first instance is this one, found on Pljesevica (bs), the "pyramid of the Moon":

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These surprising stones are interpreted by the Foundation as "cast pieces" (and as such confirming the pseudo-hypothesis that the pyramids are made from blocks cast on the place), maybe "copy of a fruit found in nature (possibly walnuts)" [1]. It is much more probable that these stones give examples of sedimentary structures or "sole marks": shapes drawn by erosion at the surface of a bedding just after it was deposited (when the mud is still soft, it can be holed by the currents, or receive impressions by the impacts of objects carried by the current); with a new stage of sedimentation, these shapes are filled by the deposits which will form the upper bedding. These shapes can be found either as holes at the summit of the lower bedding, or, more frequently, as reliefs (natural cast) at the basis of the upper bedding. These shapes are called by geologists either "flute casts" (features made by the scouring action of the current), "groove marks" (features made by an object dragged on the bottom by the current), or "tool marks" (impressions made by an object carried by the current and bouncing on the bottom) [2]. Here are some examples of "groove marks" at the basis of sedimentary beddings:

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Other examples, this time of "flute casts":

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According to the geologist Paul Heinrich, the stones found on Pljesevica are a quite classical instance of the superposition of a "groove mark" (the linear feature, or, rather, the "cast" of it as it was preserved at the basis of the upper bedding of sandstone) and of "flute casts" (the little marks which radiate from the linear main mark); and the whole was probably slightly distorted by the load of sand that covered the mudddy lower bedding and filled the marks.

The Foundation had already, in 2006, shown on its website some "strange" stones that were more or less presented as artifacts, and that could well be other instances of sedimentary sole marks, as for example this one, in July 2006:

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or this one, where Mr. Goran Cakic saw a sculpture of a bird or a flying dinosaur:

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Liesegang rings

Again on Pljesevica hill, other instances of purely geological "artifacts" (bs) - even if the title of the text presenting them says that "geology cannot explain" them:

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These shapes are in fact well known by the geologists: they are "Liesegang rings" or "bandings", rings or bands made by diffusion and precipitation of various metallic elements (usually iron, but it can also be manganese, aluminium...), transported by water diffusing accross a porous stone. One of the most reknown instance of these "Liesegang bandings" are the famous colored sandstones of Petra in Jordania:

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but they are found quite frequently in other sandstones all over the world:

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When these sandstones are, themselves, more or less orthogonally fractured (see here for numerous examples of natural "pavements"), the rings are usually controlled by the fractures which offer an easy way for the water. That is why the rings appear sometimes like "cells" or "honeycomb":

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a kind of structure that is found on Pljesevica. What is more, when these structures are submitted to weathering, the different parts of each "cell", depending on the amount of metallic elements that stayed in each ring, do not have the same resistance, so that parts of the rings will be eroded much more than the others:

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The above photographs come, for the first three, from a site in the Tennessee, and for the last three from Oklahoma. This kind of spectacular structure often raise up "pseudo-archaeological" interpretations - M. Osmanagic invented nothing: in the Tennessee (en), they are said to be a kind of "secret code" made by ancient Indians or aliens; in Oklahoma (en), a "phoenician furnace" [3].

Another instance of fantasy interpretation of a "Liesegang ring" is given by the case of the "Triassic shoe sole" (en):

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studied by Glen J. Kuban (en). Doesn’t it remind you of this magnificent "footprint" (en) found on Pljesevica?

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"Potential artifacts"

The Foundation also published the discovery of some "potential artifacts":

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These "potential artifacts" are interpreted, for the first one (bs), as a possible "mold" for the casting of metallic objects; for the second one (bs), as the possible remain of an ancient tool made of stone and of a metallic part of which is left only the imprint (and it is added that the metallic traces "resist to the acids", so that it would be a "mysterious blending"). Let’s note that:
- metallic traces are not surprising at all: the geological layers in the region contain all kinds of metals in small quantities, and metallic oxyds can, by natural processes, be found in some places with a greater concentration;
- the lacks of "reaction to the acids" does not mean a lot without further informations: every metal does not react to every acid, a variation in the dilution of the acid and in the quantity of metal and acid can produce very different effects. Knowing that the Foundation is used to distort every scientific result, I would like to be sure that "the laboratory analyses" made on this stone have been more than just throwing a few drops of diluted chlorhydric acid, or even of vinegar, sufficient to produce a reaction with the stone carbonates but not with the metal!

I cannot be as affirmative as in the case of the previous pseudo-artifacts, but I can say that the kind of holes in a stone can be perfectly explained: either by the erosion of a softer material, incorporated during the deposit inside a harder material, as can be seen here with these marks made by crystals of salt:

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or by the disparition of a concretion, of which the imprint is preserved in the stone, a concretion that could have been metallic, and that would explain the presence of metallic traces in the imprint; one can see for instance below on the right stone a concretion still in place in its stone matrix, and the halo of oxydation around the concretion:

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The Foundation is right, in that they have, for once, talked of "potential artifacts"!

A glass lump doesn’t make a pyramid!

Let’s finish with the "real" artifacts: it seems that the Foundation found three of them in 2007. One is a simple piece of glass, about 2 cm long, found in the spoil earth in Ravne tunnel (bs):

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Even if it can be dated, it would at the most indicate the moment that some parts of the tunnel have been filled; but it is everything except a proof of the existence of the pyramids...

Another artifact is this stone "wheel" coming from the KTK tunnel:

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The first article (bs) about this wheel on the Foundation website claimed that "it was left right there where it was found for further archaeological assessments". However, it soon appeared (en) that the wheel presented in this article was a "reconstruction", as a photograph taken in February 2007 showed only two pieces in place:

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so that the Foundation was forced, in a second article (bs), to admit that they had "invented" this wheel from various fragments found in the tunnel, and that explains the quite curious shape of this wheel [4], made from pieces that do not have the same curve nor the same thickness...

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Last, a text by Mr. Goran Cakic (bs) from the 5th of June 2007 presents this sculpted stone:

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However, he gives absolutely no information about its origin and the place it was found; the entire text is a long lament about the blindness and the wickedness of the "scientists and ministers" opposing Mr. Osmanagic, and he just hints that the stone must have been re-used a number of times, and that it comes from a "ruined object". On the bosnian-pyramid.com forum, it is said (en) that it comes from "inside the Visoko valley", a valley that is quite large.

Of what is this stone, that may come from a medieval building, evidence? Of absolutely nothing pertaining to pyramids. But its publication evidently shows the "propaganda" technique used by Mr. Osmanagic and his Foundation: they try to convince the public that "there is something" in Visoko valley by making what Paul Heinrich has called a "chimera", that is by creating a whole pseudo-archaeological construction, using at the same time the fascinating geology of the region and elements of real archaeology distorted and diverted in pieces of their puzzle. That is also Stultitia’s analysis of the show (bs) Mr. Osmanagic made for the Bosnian federal TV: by a montage alternating every few minutes or seconds images of Bosnia (spheres, "pyramids", tunnels...) and images of real sites in Latin America or Egypt, the aim is to "shuffle the cards", to make the public, in an almost subliminal way, confuse and liken Mr. Osmanagic’s fantasy archaeology with real archaeology. Thus this mixing, on the Foundation website, of real, false, and potential artifacts, with the same aim of "shuffling the cards".

Notes :

[1As there is no scale on the photographs, it’s impossible to estimate the size of the pieces.

[2These "tool marks" of the geologists, which are the result of a totally natural process frequent in lacustrine, fluvial or lagunal sediment, are not to be confused with the "tool marks" of the archaeologists...

[3Stultitia has indeed noted numerous similarities (bs) between the ways of David Campbell, the Oklahoma pseudo-archaeologist, and the ones of Mr. Osmanagic... including the hat, that seems to be an obligatory device for these "specialists"!

[4Unless its makers, unlike the pyramid builders, ignored that a circle has 360°...


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