by Robert M. Schoch, PH.D.
March 22, 2013
ROBERT M. SCHOCH,
Ph.D., is renowned for his work on re-dating the Great
Sphinx. Based on his geological studies, he determined
that the Sphinx’s origins date prior to dynastic times.
He has also focused his attention on the Great Pyramid
and various other temples and tombs in Egypt, as well as
studying similar structures around the world.
is an author and coauthor of both technical and popular
books, including the trilogy with R. A. McNally: Voices
of the Rocks: A Scientist Looks at Catastrophes and
Ancient Civilizations (1999), Voyages of the Pyramid
Builders: The True Origins of the Pyramids from Lost
Egypt to Ancient America (2003), and Pyramid Quest:
Secrets of the Great Pyramid and the Dawn of
What were our ancestors like 10,000 or more years ago?
The most common image is one of small
nomadic bands endlessly in pursuit of the next meal. Men hunted game
while women and children gathered fruits, seeds, roots, shoots,
insects, and other edibles.
The height of technology was a finely worked stone knife blade or
spear point; nets, baskets, and cordage were also put to good use.
Permanent structures were superfluous, for the group never stayed in
one place very long.
Material goods were sparse as
possessions had to be limited to those easily carried. Jewellery
(perhaps beads, animal teeth, or shells strung on a cord) and
personal decoration (body paint, tattoos) were prized. In colder
climates appropriate clothing was fashioned from animal skins.
Social institutions were minimal. Not
until the Neolithic Revolution, beginning about 10,000 years ago,
did agriculture and domestication appear.
This in turn allowed permanent
settlement, leading to specialization of labour, the development of
crafts (including pottery and metalworking), the building of
substantial structures, long-distance trade, and the slow and
gradual evolution of complex societies.
None of this happened overnight. It took thousands of years, and it
was not until around 4000 to 3000 BCE that true signs of high
culture first appeared, such as fine artistry in decorative crafts,
written records, scientific observations of the heavens, complex
political organizations, and megalithic building projects.
This level of achievement was reached in
Mesopotamia, the Nile Valley, and the Indus Valley by the beginning
of the third millennium BCE.
A well-known example is the rise of
dynastic Egypt about 3200 to 3100 BCE and the building of
pyramid circa 2630 BCE. Stonehenge in England dates from the same
Although accepted as dogma by many, this nice neat scenario may be
Back in 1991, I had the temerity to announce that the
Great Sphinx of Egypt, conventionally dated to 2500 BCE
(the reign of Pharaoh Khafre), actually has its origins in the 7000
to 5000 BCE range, or possibly earlier.
My announcement was done via a presentation at the October 1991
annual meeting of the Geological Society of America (this was
allowed only after a formal abstract, submitted with my colleague
John Anthony West, was accepted based on positive professional
I made my case utilizing scientific
analyses, comparing erosion and weathering profiles around the
Sphinx to the ancient climatic history of Egypt.
In brief, the Sphinx sits on the edge of the Sahara Desert, a
hyper-arid region for the past 5,000 years; yet the statue shows
substantial rain-induced erosion. The original structure must date
back thousands of years prior to 3000 BCE (the head was re-carved in
I had pushed the Great Sphinx, arguably the grandest and most
recognizable statue in the world, back into a period when humanity
was supposedly just transitioning from a hunter-gatherer economy to
a sedentary life. People 7,000 or more years ago were still brutish
and unsavory, at least by modern civilized standards.
Certainly they were not carving giant
statues (the Sphinx is about 20 meters tall by over 70 meters long)
out of solid limestone bedrock. Immediately after my announcement of
an older Sphinx, I was under attack.
Archaeologist Carol Redmount
(University of California, Berkeley) was quoted in the media,
"There’s just no way that could be
The article continued,
"The people of that region would not
have had the technology, the governing institutions or even the
will to build such a structure thousands of years before
Khafre’s reign, she said." 2
The initial hoopla peaked in February
1992 at a "debate" on the age of the Great Sphinx held at the
Chicago meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of
As the New York Times put it,
"The exchange was to last an hour,
but it spilled over to a news conference and then a hallway
confrontation in which voices were raised and words skated on
the icy edge of scientific politeness."
Egyptologist Mark Lehner could
not accept the notion of an older Sphinx, personally attacking me by
labeling my research "pseudoscience."
"If the Sphinx was built by an
earlier culture, where is the evidence of that civilization?
Where are the pottery shards? People during that age were
hunters and gatherers. They didn’t build cities." 4
At the time I lacked any pottery shards.
But I was sure of my science, and I
persisted. Two decades later, we have something better than pottery
shards, and even earlier than my conservative Sphinx date of circa
5000 BCE to 7000 BCE (I now currently favor the older end of this
range, or an even earlier date for the original Sphinx).
Göbekli Tepe dates from over 10,000
Better than Pot
A short drive from Urfa (alternatively Sanlıurfa), southeastern
Turkey, atop a mountain north of the Harran Plain, sits
Since 1995 Prof. Dr. Klaus Schmidt
of the German Archaeological Institute has been excavating the
site.5 Recently I visited it for myself. I was amazed.
At Göbekli Tepe immense finely carved and decorated T-shaped
limestone pillars, many in the range of two to five and a half
meters tall and weighing up to an estimated 10 to 15 tons, stand in
Stonehenge-like circles. The workmanship is extraordinary, with
clear sharp edges that would do any modern mason proud.
It may be a cliché, but I cannot help
but think of the opening scene of the classic 1968 movie
2001: A Space Odyssey. A group of
ape-like proto-humans discovers a giant monolith; influenced by it,
they learn to use tools, leading to civilisation.6
Various pillars at Göbekli Tepe are decorated with bas-reliefs of
foxes, boars, snakes, aurochs (wild
cattle), Asiatic wild asses, wild sheep, birds (cranes, a
vulture), a gazelle, and arthropods (scorpion, ants).
The carvings are refined, sophisticated,
and beautifully executed.
Not only are there bas-reliefs, but also
carvings in the round, including a carnivorous beast, possibly a
lion or other feline, working its way down a column, apparently in
pursuit of a boar carved in relief below.
In the round, carvings of lions and
boars have been uncovered, now housed in the Museum of Sanlıurfa, as
is a life-sized statue of a man, which, though from Urfa, apparently
dates to the Göbekli Tepe era.
Also from Göbekli Tepe are perfectly drilled stone beads. And,
according to Prof. Schmidt, while some of the stone pillars were set
in the local bedrock, others were set into a concrete- or
Looking only at style and quality of
workmanship, one might easily suggest that Göbekli Tepe dates
between 3000 and 1000 BCE. How wrong one would be. Based on
radiocarbon analyses, the site goes back to the period of 9000 to
10,000 BCE, and was intentionally buried circa 8000 BCE.7
That is, the site dates back an
astounding 10,000 to 12,000 years ago!
This was supposedly the time of the brutish, nomadic, hunters and
gatherers who, according to many academics, did not have the
technology, governing institutions, or will to build structures such
as those found at Göbekli Tepe.
Clearly there is a disconnect between
what conventional historians and archaeologists have been teaching
all these years and the clear evidence on the ground.
As Stanford University archaeologist Ian Hodder commented,
Göbekli Tepe is,
"unbelievably big and amazing, at a
ridiculously early date… huge great stones and fantastic, highly
refined art… Many people think that it changes everything… It
overturns the whole apple cart. All our theories were wrong."
Like my re-dating of the Great Sphinx,
Göbekli Tepe forces us to reconsider our antiquity. And like my work
on the Sphinx, the specialists are perplexed by Göbekli Tepe.
Patrick Symmes wrote in Newsweek,
"But the real reason the ruins at
Göbekli remain almost unknown, not yet incorporated in
textbooks, is that the evidence is too strong, not too weak.
‘The problem with this
discovery’, as [Glenn] Schwartz of Johns Hopkins puts it,
‘is that it is unique’.
No other monumental sites from the
era have been found. Before Göbekli, humans drew stick figures
on cave walls, shaped clay into tiny dolls, and perhaps piled up
small stones for shelter or worship.
Even after Göbekli, there is little
evidence of sophisticated building." 9
In a nutshell, we have evidence of high
culture and civilization circa 10,000 to 8,000 BCE, but then an
apparent decline or hiatus for thousands of years, until the "rise"
of civilization once again
Egypt, and elsewhere.
A Record of
Precession at Göbekli Tepe
A hallmark of civilization is precise scientific observation.
Astronomy is often considered the
earliest yet most sophisticated of the sciences. A particularly
subtle astronomical phenomenon, the discovery of which is generally
credited to Hipparchus of Rhodes in the second century BCE,10
is the slow movement of the stars relative to the equatorial
coordinate system. This is commonly referred to as the precession of
The entire cycle, with stars returning
to their "starting points," takes somewhat under 26,000 years.
Some researchers suggest that precession
was known to the ancient Egyptians and other early civilizations,
and is reflected in myths worldwide.11 Others
dispute such assertions. I found evidence of precession at Göbekli
Tepe, adding another layer of sophistication to this remarkable
The excavated portions of Göbekli Tepe lie on the southern slope of
a hill looking out to the southern skies. Thus far, the better part
of four stone circles (enclosures) has been excavated in an area
measuring about 40 by 40 meters square.
Additional, later and smaller, pillars
and structures have been partially uncovered both 20 to 30 meters
north and about 80 meters west of the major area of circles,12
and eighteen or more stone circles still under the earth have been
identified. Enclosure D is located furthest north. To the southeast
lies Enclosure C, and to the south of Enclosure D lies Enclosure B
and finally A.
The enclosures are very close to each
other, almost abutting. Each enclosure possesses a pair of tall
central parallel pillars ringed by a circle of shorter pillars with
later stonewalls between the pillars. If at some point the
enclosures were covered over, they may have been entered from above;
indeed, possible carved stone "portals" have been found that
may have been set in a roof.
The central pairs of pillars are oriented generally toward the
southeast, as if forming sighting tubes toward the sky.
The central pillars of Enclosure D
include arms and hands, with the hands holding the belly or navel
area, and it is clear that the anthropomorphic pillars are facing
south. The orientations vary from enclosure to enclosure, however.
For Enclosure D the central pillars are
oriented approximately 7ş east of south.
Those for Enclosures C, B, and A are
approximately 13ş east of south, 20ş east of south, and 35ş east of
These varying angles suggest the builders were observing stars and
building new enclosures oriented progressively toward the east as
they followed particular stars or star clusters over hundreds of
What were the builders observing?
This is a difficult question to answer,
but we can hypothesize. On the morning of the Vernal Equinox of
circa 10,000 BCE, before the Sun rose due east at Göbekli Tepe, the
Pleiades, Taurus, and the top of Orion were in view in the direction
indicated by the central stones of Enclosure D, with Orion’s belt
not far above the horizon (as seen from the best vantage points in
the area) as dawn broke.14
A similar scenario played out for the
orientation of the central stones of Enclosure C in circa 9500 BCE
and for Enclosure B in circa 9000 BCE. Enclosure A is oriented
toward the Pleiades, Taurus, and Orion on the morning of the Vernal
Equinox circa 8500 BCE, but due to precessional changes, the entire
belt of Orion no longer rose above the horizon before dawn broke.
By about 8150 BCE the belt of Orion
remained below the horizon at dawn on the morning of the Vernal
Equinox. These dates fit well the timeframe established for Göbekli
Tepe on the basis of radiocarbon dating.
The Vernal Equinox is easily observed and noted, and since the
beginning of recorded history has been an important marker,
celebrated with festivities. It marks the first day of the year in
numerous calendars, and is tied to cosmological creation stories. I
suspect that these traditions go back to Göbekli Tepe times, and
The Orion-Taurus region of the sky has been a focus of ancient
humans for tens of thousands of years in Europe and the Middle East.
Here are located the asterisms of
Orion’s belt and the Hyades, as well as the Pleiades.
Researchers such as Michael
Rappenglueck, Frank Edge, and Luz Antequera Congregado
have identified the constellation Taurus and the Pleiades among the
paintings of Lascaux cave, France, dating back 16,500 years ago.15
Additionally, Rappenglueck asserts that
a tiny tablet from Germany, carved of mammoth ivory and dating back
at least 32,500 years, depicts the constellation Orion in the
familiar guise of a narrow-waist male with outstretched arms and
Given such evidence, it is reasonable that the Göbekli Tepe people
recognized Orion as a human figure, even as a hunter. The mammal
remains found while excavating Göbekli Tepe (including numerous
gazelle, aurochs or wild cattle, wild ass, fox, wild sheep/goat
species, and boars), as well as the reliefs on the pillars, can be
taken to indicate a hunting society.
Indeed, studying the anthropomorphic
pillars of Enclosure D, they may represent, in stylized form, Orion.
Not only do they have arms (which could
be interpreted as the arms of Orion brought down to the body), but
also prominent belts (the belt stars of Orion) and fox pelt
loincloths that may represent the Orion Nebula and associated
My suggestion that the Göbekli Tepe people were observing the
Orion-Taurus-Pleiades region of the sky on the morning of the Vernal
Equinox is simply a hypothesis. If they were observing stars (versus
the Sun, for instance), then they needed to readjust their
observations over the centuries due to precessional changes.
And maybe they were observing something
more than just the Sun, Moon, planets, and stars.
Easter Island, and the Plasma Connection
Having returned from
Easter Island (January 2010) not
long before visiting Göbekli Tepe (May 2010), I was surprised to see
numerous iconographic similarities between the two.
I believe these similarities are real,
but I might have missed them if I had not been to both sites in
succession. Furthermore, both Easter Island and Göbekli Tepe may
relate to powerful plasma events in the skies at the end of the last
The outstanding feature of Easter Island is the moai, those huge
stone heads and torsos that dot the island. In the case of Göbekli
Tepe, stone pillars dominate the scene. Amazingly, both the moai and
the anthropomorphic central pillars of Enclosure D at Göbekli Tepe
have arms and hands positioned similarly against the body, with
hands and fingers extended over the belly and navel region.
The moai are looking up at the skies,
and I believe the Göbekli Tepe pillars are also looking towards the
Are they looking to identical phenomena?
As I have discussed elsewhere,17 the indigenous
Easter Island rongorongo script may record a major plasma event in
the skies thousands of years ago, at the end of the last ice age.
Plasma consists of electrically charged particles. Familiar plasma
phenomena on Earth today include lightning and auroras, the northern
and southern lights.
In the past, much more powerful plasma
events may have taken place, perhaps due to coronal mass ejections
from the Sun or emissions from other celestial objects. Powerful
plasma phenomena could cause strong electrical discharges to hit
Earth, burning and incinerating materials on the planet’s surface.
Los Alamos plasma physicist Anthony L. Peratt and his
associates have established that petroglyphs found worldwide record
an intense plasma event (or events) in prehistory.18
Peratt has determined that powerful
plasma phenomena observed in the skies would take on characteristic
shapes resembling humanoid figures, humans with bird heads, sets of
rings or donut shapes, and writhing snakes or serpents - shapes
reflected in the ancient petroglyphs.
Plasma events may be a dominant theme
found among the ancient remains of Easter Island.
Likewise, plasma may be important to
understanding Göbekli Tepe.
One of the strange and perplexing aspects of Göbekli Tepe is that it
was not simply abandoned and left to oblivion, but intentionally
buried around 8000 BCE. Furthermore, before its final burial,
stonewalls were built between the finely wrought pillars. These
walls are, in my opinion, clearly secondary as in many cases they
cover over the fine relief carvings on the pillars. They are also
much cruder than the pillars.
Additionally, some pillars appear to
have fallen over and broken, and were subsequently repaired or
re-erected when the walls were built. In several cases the bases of
the broken pillars are missing or lying horizontally under the tops
of the broken pillars that were set to the correct height on a pile
At this late stage the walls and pillars
may have been roofed over.
Among the oddities of Easter Island are the low-lying, solid,
thick-walled stone buildings with narrow entrances that look like
bunkers or fallout shelters. These stone "houses" of Easter
Island are similar to the structures formed by the walls and pillars
of Göbekli Tepe.
Could they, in both cases, have been
protection from some type of phenomena emanating from the skies,
such as plasma strikes?
Some might criticize comparisons between Easter Island and Göbekli
Tepe not only on the basis that they are on opposite sides of the
globe, but are also ostensibly separated by thousands of years (Göbekli
Tepe dating from 8000 BCE and before, whereas according to standard
chronologies Easter Island was not inhabited until a mere millennium
and a half ago).
In counterargument, I question whether
we really know when Easter Island was first colonized.
Even if surviving Easter Island
antiquities and structures are from a relatively late period, they
may reflect earlier traditions and styles, perhaps brought by
settlers from elsewhere, that date back to a time of intense plasma
The rongorongo tablets may carefully
preserve ancient texts that were copied over and over.
Just as I have argued that the Easter Island rongorongo script
records plasma events in the ancient skies, so too might certain
carved motifs found at Göbekli Tepe. Peratt has made the connection
between birdman petroglyphs and plasma phenomena around the world.
On Easter Island we find birdman
petroglyphs as well as birdmen and bird symbols among the rongorongo
hieroglyphs. At Göbekli Tepe a very similar bird form was carved
into one of the pillars. Peratt records many plasma phenomena that
can be interpreted as having the appearance of snakes.
An abundance of snakes are found on the
pillars of Göbekli Tepe, slithering vertically up and down the ends
of some of the columns. Could these represent huge bolts of plasma?
Based on the evidence slowly being pieced together, it appears there
may have been a major plasma event, or events, in antiquity.
In a previous article (see New Dawn 121)
19 I posited that a major plasma event, circa 9700 BCE,
helped bring about the end of the last ice age. If the radiocarbon
dating of Göbekli Tepe, to circa 10,000 to 8000 BCE is correct,
perhaps the first-built stone circle was initiated in response to
this plasma event of circa 9700 BCE.
The plasma phenomena were observed originating from the south, the
direction toward which the Göbekli Tepe complex is oriented. Plasma
events may have continued for centuries, and they may correlate with
the additions and elaborations - stonewalls and more stone circles -
seen at Göbekli Tepe.
Perhaps ultimately the plasma was too
much for the Göbekli Tepe people to bear, and they abandoned the
site, but not before carefully covering it over.
Whether their intention was to return
once the skies calmed down, or to preserve their work for posterity,
we do not know.
What happened at Göbekli Tepe?
What were the people of that
What were they experiencing?
Why did they bury their creation
Where did they go?
These may be more than simple academic
I suspect that the Göbekli Tepe people
experienced something dramatic, something so important they felt
compelled to memorialize it in a record of stone that could last for
over ten thousand years. They expended enormous resources to leave a
message, possibly a warning, for us.
Now it is time to fully uncover it and
decipher what they had to say.
1. Robert M. Schoch and John Anthony
West, "Redating the Great Sphinx of Giza, Egypt" , Geological
Society of America abstracts with programs, vol. 23, no. 5, A253
(1991). For further discussion of the date of the Great Sphinx,
see: Robert M. Schoch. "Redating the Great Sphinx of Giza" , KMT,
A Modern Journal of Ancient Egypt, vol. 3, no. 2, 52-59, 66-70
(Summer 1992); Robert M. Schoch, "Geological Evidence Pertaining
to the Age of the Great Sphinx" , in New Scenarios on the
Evolution of the Solar System and Consequences on History of
Earth and Man (Eds. Emilio Spedicato and Adalberto Notarpietro),
Proceedings of the Conference, Milano and Bergamo, June 7-9th,
1999, Universitŕ degli Studi di Bergamo, Quaderni del
Dipartmento di Matematica, Statistica, Informatica ed
Applicazion, Serie Miscellanea, Anno 2002, N. 3, 171-203 (2002);
Robert M. Schoch, "Life with the Great Sphinx: Some Personal
Reflections" , Darklore, vol. 1, 38-55, 291 (2007); Robert M.
Schoch with Robert Aquinas McNally, Voices of the Rocks: A
Scientist Looks at Catastrophes and Ancient Civilizations, New
York: Harmony Books, 1999; Robert M. Schoch with Robert Aquinas
McNally, Voyages of the Pyramid Builders: The True Origins of
the Pyramids from Lost Egypt to Ancient America, New York:
Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin, 2003; Robert M. Schoch and Robert
Aquinas McNally, Pyramid Quest: Secrets of the Great Pyramid and
the Dawn of Civilization, New York: Jeremy P. Tarcher/Penguin,
2005; Robert M. Schoch and John Anthony West, "Further Evidence
Supporting a Pre-2500 B.C. Date for the Great Sphinx of Giza,
Egypt" , Geological Society of America abstracts with programs,
v. 32, no. 7, A276 (2000); T. L. Dobecki and R. M. Schoch,
"Seismic Investigations in the Vicinity of the Great Sphinx of
Giza, Egypt" , Geoarchaeology, vol. 7, no. 6, 527-544 (1992).
2. Lee Dye, "Sphinx’s New Riddle–Is It Older Than Experts Say?
Archeology: Geologists cite study of weathering patterns. But
Egyptologists say findings can’t be right" , Los Angeles Times,
October 23, 1991. Posted at: http://articles.latimes.com/1991-10-23/news/mn-183_1_great-sphinx
(Accessed 14 June 2010).
3. Robert M. Schoch, "How old is the Sphinx?" , Abstracts for
the 1992 Annual Meeting of the American Association for the
Advancement of Science, Chicago, 202 (1992).
4. Anonymous, "Scholars Dispute Claim That Sphinx Is Much Older"
, New York Times, February 9, 1992. Posted at: www.nytimes.com/1992/02/09/us/scholars-dispute-claim-that-sphinx-is-much-older.html
(Accessed 14 June 2010).
5. Klaus Schmidt, Sie bauten die ersten Tempel: Das rätselhafte
Heiligtum der Steinzeijäger, Die archäologische Entdeckung am
Göbekli Tepe, München: Deutscher Taschenbuch Verlag, 2006/2008;
Klaus Schmidt, Tas Çagi Avcılarının Gizemli Kutsal Alanı Göbekli
Tepe En Eski Tapınagı Yapanlar, Istanbul: Arkeolojí ve Sanat
Yayınları, 2007; K. Schmidt, "Göbekli Tepe, Southeastern Turkey:
A Preliminary Report on the 1995-1999 Excavations,"
Paléorient, vol. 26, no. 1, 45-54 (2001); Joris Peters and Klaus
Schmidt, "Animals in the symbolic world of Pre-Pottery Neolithic
Göbekli Tepe, south-eastern Turkey: a preliminary assessment" ,
Anthropozoologica, vol. 39, no. 1, 179-218 (2004). For popular
discussions of Göbekli Tepe, see: Graham Chandler (photographs
by Ergun Çagatay), "The Beginning of the End for
Hunter-Gatherers" , Saudi ARAMCO World, vol. 60, no. 2, 2-9
(March/April 2009); Andrew Curry (photographs by Berthold
Steinhilber), "The World’s First Temple? Predating Stonehenge by
6,000 years, Turkey’s Stunning Gobekli Tepe Upends the
Conventional View of the Rise of Civilization" , Smithsonian,
vol. 39, no. 8, 54-58, 60 (November 2008); Patrick Symmes,
"History in the Remaking: A temple complex in Turkey that
predates even the pyramids is rewriting the story of human
evolution" , Newsweek, 1 March 2010, article published online 19
February 2010 at: www.newsweek.com/id/233844 (Accessed 29 April
6. Stanley Kubrick and Arthur C. Clarke, directed by Stanley
Kubrick, 2001: A Space Odyssey (film), Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer,
7. I briefly discussed the dating of Göbekli Tepe on site with
Prof. Schmidt. It is based not only on calibrated radiocarbon
dates of circa 9000 BCE or earlier on organic remains found in
the material used to fill the site (these dates would be later
than the actual occupation of the site), but also dates of circa
8000-7500 BCE on pedogenic carbonate coatings and
micro-stalactites on wall stones (see Peters and Schmidt, 2004,
182 [note 5.]). These carbonate coatings and micro-stalactites
would have formed only after the burial of the site and after
soil formation began, thus indicating that the site itself was
buried by circa 8000 BCE. Taken together, I am convinced that
the evidence indicates that the site was actively used in the
tenth and ninth millennia BCE and intentionally buried (as
indicated by the systematic layers of the fill material and the
material the fill contains, including flint tools and waste,
animal and plant remains) circa 8000 BCE. The older Enclosures
(A, B, C, and D) belong to Schmidt’s "Layer III."
Overlying Layer III is the younger Layer II, which contains
smaller pillars and structures, and may date to the same period
as the Neolithic site of Nevali Çori, an area northwest of
Göbekli Tepe and similar in many respects to the Layer II period
at Göbekli Tepe. Nevali Çori was excavated in the 1990s, but has
since been flooded as a result of the Atatürk Dam built on the
Euphrates River. Nevali Çori and Layer II of Göbekli Tepe may
date to the second half of the ninth millennium BCE. In the
catalog to accompany a 2007 exhibit at the Badisches
Landesmuseum Karlsruhe (Die ältesten Monumente der Menschheit.
Vor 12.000 Jahren in Anatolien, Stuttgart: Konrad Theiss, 2007),
the earlier material at Göbekli Tepe, that of Layer III, is
referred to 9500-8800 BCE whereas the material from Layer II is
referred to 8800-8000 BCE and material from Nevali Çori is dated
to circa 8500-7900 BCE. Prof. Schmidt suggested that some of the
carved depressions and gouges, for instance on the tops of
pillars, may date to a time when the site was buried but still
remembered as an important or holy site, and people came to
partake of the energy of the site. As Veysí Yildiz, son of the
local landowner, explained, even before the archaeological
remains were discovered at Göbekli Tepe, the area was held in
reverence (stone-covered graves are found on the top of the
mound to this day).
8. Quoted by Patrick Symmes in Newsweek [see note 5.].
9. Patrick Symmes [see note 5.]
10. Giulio Magli, "On the possible discovery of precessional
effects in ancient astronomy," article from 2004 posted
(Accessed 17 June 2010); Giulio Magli, Mysteries and Discoveries
of Archaeoastronomy: From Giza to Easter Island, New York:
Copernicus Books, 2009.
11. See for instance, J. Norman Lockyer, The Dawn of Astronomy,
New York: Macmillan, 1894 (reprinted, with a preface by Giorgio
de Santillana, Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1964); Giorgio de
Santillana and Hertha von Dechend, Hamlet’s Mill: An Essay on
Myth and the Frame of Time, Boston: Gambit, 1969.
12. The main, and older, portion of Göbekli Tepe under
discussion in this article belongs to Schmidt’s Layer III; the
younger and smaller pillars and structures belong to Schmidt’s
Layer II [see note 7.].
13. These measurements are only approximate, and are based on
the plan of Göbekli Tepe on page 186 of Peters and Schmidt, 2004
14. Alignments discussed here were determined using the computer
program "Starry Night Pro 4.5" (Toronto: Space Holding
15. Christopher Seddon, "Ice Age Star Maps?" article dated
1 January 2008, posted at www.christopherseddon.com/2008/01/ice-age-star-maps.html
(Accessed 5 June 2010); Gary D. Thompson, "Paleolithic European
Constellations - star maps in Lascaux cave in France
16,500-13,000 B.C." , article dated 2001-2007, posted at:
www.mazzaroth.com/ChapterOne/LascauxCave.htm (Accessed 5 June
2010); David Whitehouse, "Ice Age star map discovered" , article
dated 9 August 2000, posted at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/871930.stm
(Accessed 5 June 2010).
16. David Whitehouse, " ‘Oldest star chart’ found" , article
dated 21 January 2003, posted at: http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/2679675.stm
(Accessed 5 June 2010).
17. Robert M. Schoch, "An Ancient Warning, A Global Message,
From the End of the Last Ice Age" , New Dawn 121, 15-22
18. Anthony L. Peratt, "Characteristics for the Occurrence of a
High-Current, Z-Pinch Aurora as Recorded in Antiquity" ,
Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Transactions
on Plasma Science, vol. 31, no. 6, 1192-1214 (December 2003);
Anthony L. Peratt, John McGovern, Alfred H. Qöyawayma, Marinus
Anthony Van der Sluijs, and Mathias G. Peratt, "Characteristics
for the Occurrence of a High-Current, Z-Pinch Aurora as Recorded
in Antiquity Part II: Directionality and Source" , Institute of
Electrical and Electronics Engineers Transactions on Plasma
Science, vol. 35, no. 4, 778-807 (August 2007); A. L. Peratt and
W. F. Yao, "Evidence for an Intense Solar Outburst in
Prehistory" , Physica Scripta (The Royal Swedish Academy of
Sciences), 13 pages (December 2008).
19. See note 17.