These Peruvian Pyramids Are Just As Old As Egypt’s Pyramids

The lost city of Caral boasts pyramids just as old as those in Egypt and is the oldest city in the New World.

Relatively speaking, the Incas are recent history. One unfortunate consequence of the fame of the Incas is that they tend to crowd out the long and rich history of the region with its many kingdoms and civilizations that went before. Some pre-Inca cultures were incorporated into the Inca Empire, while others were ancient history by the time the Incas appeared on the scene.

The oldest city now known in the Americas is that of Caral. It flourished at around the same time as the Egyptian pyramids were being built. The ruins of ‘Sacred City of Caral-Supe’ or simply ‘Caral,’ is a reminder of just how old the history of what is today Peru really is. Another ancient pre-Inca city in the Peruvian desert to explore is Chan Chan. Peru is a country with a very rich history.

Caral – The America’s Oldest City

Caral is considered both the oldest (known) city in the Americas and one of the oldest in the whole world. It history stretches back around 5000 years rivaling the age of Ancient Egypt and its pyramids. No other site in the Americas has been found with Caral’s diversity of monumental buildings and ceremonial and administrative functions.

  • Location: Peru In The Supe Valley By The Coast
  • Oldest: Believed To Be The Oldest City In The Americas’ (and One Of The Oldest In The World)

The city of Caral was part of the ancient Caral culture. It is believed to have developed between 3000 and 1800 BC and is considered the oldest of the pre-Hispanic civilizations.

Caral Culture: Developed Between 3000 and 1800 BC

To put that into context, that is much older than the civilizations of Mesoamerica. The Olmec civilization is considered a progenitor to the complex civilizations of Mesoamerica (the Olmecs were responsible for the “colossal heads” and the first use of chocolate). But the Caral Culture is believed to have developed around 1,500 years earlier than the Olmec culture.

As is understood now, Caral could be thought of as the cradle of Andean civilization – and eventually the Incas. It appears that Caral was the model urban design that was subsequently adopted by Andean civilizations over the following four millennia.

Pyramids As Old As Egypt And More

Exceptionally well-preserved, the site is impressive in terms of its design and the complexity of its architectural, especially its monumental stone and earthen platform mounts and sunken circular courts. UNESCO

As one visits Caral today, one will see a windswept desert with what appears to be six dunelike mounds. But these are not works of nature, they are human-made pyramids. They are what remains of a city that once flourished there almost 5,000 years ago.

  • Size: The Site Covers 626 hectares
  • Contains: Pyramids, Plazas, and Residential Buildings
  • Pyramids: The Site Has The Remains of Six Main Pyramids
  • Listed: As A World Heritage Site

Closely associated with the city of Caral was the early fishing city of Áspero or El Áspero situated on on the west coast of Peru, near the mouth of the Supe River. Here excavations have found the remains of human sacrifices (two children and a newborn). It also has large platform mounds.

The Supe Valley has fertile lands and is close to the sea. The ancient inhabitants were fishermen, farmers, and seafarers.

The city is believed to have been the home of over 3,000 inhabitants and is now the best studied and one of the largest Norte Chico sites known.

Caral is today an important archeological site with the remains of what was the main city of the Caral civilization. It is located in present-day Peru in the Supe Valley near the town of Caral – around 180 km or 110 miles north of Lima.

Caral was inhabited between approximately 26th century BC and 20th century BC, and the site includes an area of more than 60 hectares (150 acres). Caral has been described by its excavators as the oldest urban center in the Americas, a claim that was later challenged as other ancient sites were found nearby, such as Bandurria, Peru. Accommodating more than 3,000 inhabitants, it is the best studied and one of the largest Norte Chico sites known.

The city was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2009. In early 2021, tensions arose between squatters claiming land rights and archaeologists researching the site as housing construction encroached on the site.

Shady’s findings suggest it was a gentle society, built on commerce and pleasure. No indications of warfare, such as battlements, weapons, or mutilated bodies, have been found at Caral. This contrasts with the older civilisation of Sechin Bajo where depictions of weapons are found. In one of the temples, they uncovered 32 flutes made of condor and pelican bones and 37 cornetts of deer and llama bones. One find revealed the remains of a baby, wrapped and buried with a necklace made of stone beads.

Boy, six, finds giant megalodon shark tooth on Bawdsey beach

Sammy Shelton
Image caption,Sammy Shelton found the giant tooth on a Suffolk beach

A six-year-old boy has found a shark tooth belonging to a giant prehistoric megalodon that could be up to 20 million years old.

Sammy Shelton found the 10cm-long (4in) tooth on Bawdsey beach in Suffolk during a bank holiday break.

It has been confirmed as belonging to a megalodon – the largest shark that ever existed – by expert Prof Ben Garrod.

His dad Peter Shelton said Sammy was sleeping with it near his bed as he was “very attached to it”.

The pair, from Bradwell near Gorleston-on-Sea in Norfolk, were searching for fossils when they came across the giant shark’s tooth, as first reported in the Great Yarmouth Mercury.

“Sammy was very excited as we’d seen fragments of shark teeth on the beach, but nothing as big and heavy as this,” Mr Shelton said.

Artist's impression of a megalodon
Image caption,Megalodon was a giant and dwarfed all other sea creatures
Sammy Shelton holding a shark's tooth on a beach
Image caption,Sammy found the tooth on the beach beneath Bawdsey’s eroding sandy cliffs while on holiday on 30 May

Photographs of the find were sent to Prof Garrod, a broadcaster and evolutionary biologist at the University of East Anglia in Norwich.

“It belonged to a megalodon, the largest ever shark – and its teeth are not often found around the UK coastline,” he said.

“Maybe just a handful a year, but this is a particularly good example, in really good condition, whereas they are usually quite worn when found.”

Megalodon was a maximum of 16 - 18 metres long, great white sharks are 5 metres and humans about 1.75 metres

The megalodon could grow up to 18m (60ft) in length, scientists estimate, and weigh up to 60 tonnes, he said.

Dwarfing anything else swimming in the waters at the time, these were “specialist whale eaters – they were ambush hunters,” Prof Garrod said.

Shark's tooth in a hand
Image caption,The tooth was said to be in very good condition

The megalodon dominated all the seas around the world other than those parts of the oceans surrounding Antarctica.

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The megalodon

  • The cartilaginous fish (whose skeleton is made of cartilage rather than bone) was a carnivore and had no known predators
  • It could eat anything it liked, but its favourite food was whales, although seals would also have been on the menu
  • Most of this shark’s hunting was in the open sea (juveniles lived closer to shore) and it attacked its prey near the surface, when it came up for air
  • Megalodon could swim at high speed in short bursts so tended to rush its prey from beneath
  • It would first aim to disable its prey by injuring a flipper or the tail, then once unable to swim properly, the victim would be easy to finish off
  • Lived from about 20 million years ago, long after the dinosaurs became extinct 65 million years ago

Source: BBC Science

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The name means “big tooth” and the giants were active from about 22 million years ago until about three million years ago when they became extinct.

Sammy’s find was “a really big thing” for the little boy, Prof Garrod said.

“Not many people who look for a megalodon tooth actually find one,” he said.

“I know – I’ve been searching since I was a child and I knew all the beaches around the area – but I still haven’t found my megalodon.”

Shark's tooth next to a ruler
Image caption,The tooth measures about 10cm

Sammy’s excitement has been shared with his friends at school, and he took the tooth to his beaver cubs group, after which he was awarded his explorer badge, his father said.

Sammy described the “massive” tooth as his best-ever find, and said it was just lying there on the sand and pebbles.

BBC

German Teenager Makes Illegal Climb of The Great Pyramid of Giza

A German teenager found himself in hot water with Egyptian authorities after being arrested for climbing the Great Pyramid of Giza. Andrej Ciesielski scaled the legendary monument earlier this month in a daring daylight climb that amazingly only took him about 8 minutes to accomplish. Despite being spotted by police during his ascent, Ciesielski continued to the top of the pyramid to savor the once-in-a-lifetime view and document his incredible feat. Upon returning to ground level, the young man was arrested and could have faced up to three years in jail for the stunt. He was eventually released after agreeing to let authorities delete the footage and photos from his climb. Fortunately, Ciesielski had a way to recover the digital material and is now sharing the evidence of his awesome adventure with the world. 

One slip and it’s going to be a head-over-heels crash that could cause permanent damage.

Here are some photos of Russian adventurers who climbed the pyramid a few years ago.

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After a hard day of pyramid climbing, go to the KFC and indulge in deep fried Goat Stew.  Available only at Egyptian KFC outlets.

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Giant Flying Reptile Pterosaur

Quetzalcoatlus Northropi An Ancient Bird Next To A Human

Image running into this thing. Luckily no humans around when this beast was on the planet.

Quetzalcoatlus is a pterosaur known from the Late Cretaceous period of North America, it was one of the largest known flying animals of all time. Quetzalcoatlus is a member of the family Azhdarchidae, a family of advanced toothless pterosaurs with unusually long, stiffened necks. Its name comes from the Aztec feathered serpent god, Quetzalcoatl, in Nahuatl. The type and only species is Q. northropi.

The first Quetzalcoatlus fossils were discovered in Texas, United States, from the Maastrichtian Javelina Formation at Big Bend National Park (dated to around 68 million years ago in 1971 by Douglas A. Lawson, a geology graduate student from the Jackson School of Geosciences at the University of Texas at Austin. The specimen consisted of a partial wing (in pterosaurs composed of the forearms and elongated fourth finger), from an individual later estimated at over 10 m (33 ft) in wingspan.

When it was first named as a new species in 1975, scientists estimated that the largest Quetzalcoatlus fossils came from an individual with a wingspan as large as 15.9 m (52 ft). Choosing the middle of three extrapolations from the proportions of other pterosaurs gave an estimate of 11 m, 15.5 m, and 21 m, respectively (36 ft, 50.85 ft, 68.9 ft). In 1981, further advanced studies lowered these estimates to 11–12 m (36–39 ft).