The Pantheon: Rome’s Architecture Of The Cosmos

Outlining the 3 niches that get illuminated. The tomb of King Umberto I and his wife Margherita di Savoia is in the chapel below it. The chapel was originally dedicated to St Michael the Archangel, and then to St. Thomas the Apostle.

It is the most important solar spot in the pantheon. Being burried there is like a pharao likening himself to Osiris the spring constellation god, or our Hercules. That is probably the statue that was in the niche.


Stijn van den Hoven – March 2018


A great article on the pantheon in Rome.

Source article mirrored from: Benjamin Blankenbehler

Founded: 126 AD
Architect: Unknown
Patron: Marcus Aggripa, Emperor Hadrian
Style: Roman (Hadrian era)
Location: Campus Martius, Rome
The Pantheon united all the gods in one location, and elevated Rome to a heavenly world. Sunlight and proportion were carefully crafted using a symbolism of the earth uniting with the sun.The “double pediment” commonly thought to be a design mistake actually had a deeper purpose. Geometry unites both pediments with the entire design composition.

Innovations of Design

Funeral Dome – Domes had previously always been kept small.
It was a challenge to make circular buildings. It was difficult to separate rooms and provide an entrance to a round space. They did’t fit well into a city site, and details such as the roof were tricky to figure out. aThere were two kinds of domes before the Pantheon.

The Tholos was an underground domed tomb used since Neolithic times. The Treasury of Atreus was constructed around 1250 BC. Concentric slabs of stone were stacked like a beehive to form a pointed dome. The dome in this tomb has an impressive diameter of 27 ft (14.5m).

The other kind of dome was the Tumulus mound. These burial mounds were dug all around the world from the earliest of times and reached all scales of size.The interior of the Tholos was domed, while the exterior of the Tumulus was domed. In both cases the function was for burial. The Pantheon forever changed this.The Pantheon revealed the dome shape both in the inside and on the outside.
Round Temples – Circular temples were often used in Greece. The design language was detailed by Vitruvius. Corinthian columns were freestanding or surrounded a circular wall. They held up a dome with a diameter equal to the height of the columns.The Pantheon changed this. The dome is much larger in proportion to the columns, forming a sphere that fits entirely inside the space. The Pantheon’s columns switch places with the cella wall, which emphasizes the structure of the interior rather than the exterior space. The roots of this transformation can be seen at Hadrian’s Temple of Apollo in Tivoli.

Round temples were typically dedicated to Vesta. Here they offered sacrifices to protect life on earth and the family. Corinthian columns in these temples represent rebirth and youth.

The Pantheon uses the same Corinthian columns. But the Pantheon was not funeral in nature. The dome of the Pantheon stacks in ribs like the Tholos to form a drum, but then a proper concrete dome like that of the common circular temple completes the dome. It is a synthesis of construction techniques.

Trajan’s Market – The same people who built the Pantheon probably built the Trajan Markets. “The Markets show that vaulted, brick-faced architecture had become fully accepted and could be used in almost any kind of building. Since they were built just a few years before the Pantheon, they clearly record the kind of design and construction that Hadrian’s architects knew well and perhaps even worked on.” bThe arch and barrel vault were constructed to a monumental scale, with the same construction technique as the Pantheon.


The need for light and air in the Market contributed to the Pantheon’s expansive feeling. The openings for shops in the Market became niches for statues to the gods in the Pantheon.

Traditional Greek & New Roman – The first Pantheon was built in 25 BC by general Marcus Aggripa. It was called Pan “all” – Theos “gods”, meaning a temple to “all the gods”. Little is known about this original building, except that it contained statues of gods and probably was south facing. It probably was a traditional round temple.

The new Pantheon was completed about 128 AD by Emperor Hadrian with a radical new design. As a student of architecture himself, Hadrian gathered ideas during his travels and studies. “Architecture was his particular passion. A massive building program would please the citizens, and it would also please him…. Seated under the heavenly dome, he would be the son of a god, surrounded by the heavens.” c

He attached a traditional Greek temple entrance to a domed rotunda. Such a thing had never been done. The clash of two totally separate things certainly must have riled the conservative sensibilities of Rome. The architect Apollodoros was one great critic of Hadrian (who Hadrian later put to death.)

At 142 ft diameter (43m), the dome is the largest unreinforced masonry dome in the world. The walls are 19 ft thick and distribute the great weight on 3 tiers of arches. And it was built in only 10 years.


Site Relationships

The Pantheon’s location and orientation relates to buildings around it. North of the Pantheon is the obelisk of Ramses II from the sun temple in Heliopolis. Due north of that the Mausoleum of Augustus. Beyond that on this northern axis is the obelisk of Ramesses II, moved there from the Circus Maximus in 1589.

The sun reaches closest to the center of the Pantheon on the summer solstice. This summer solstice is a yearly event that reveals an important alignment of monuments. The setting summer solstice sun forms this axis:

From the Pantheon, one can see the summer solstice sun set behind the mausoleum of Hadrian. The axis continues to the column of Trajan, the Colosseum, and the Lateran obelisk of Karnak, which is the largest obelisk in the world and was moved there in the 16th century. The axis continues on to the Monte del Grano burial site which bears striking resemblance to the Pantheon.

This 1641 map of Rome shows this axis terminating at the obelisk of Heliopolis in front of St. Peter’s, though this orientation is skewed and not actually the case.

The ara pacis Museum of Peace originally stood due north, past the obelisk in front of the Pantheon. At 30m heigh, the obelisk would have cast a shadow that touched the Museum on the equinox.

The Pantheon is therefore a unifying element in the layout of Rome. It suggests Hadrian’s resurrection with the sun. A monument to peace in an area originally dedicated to Mars suggests a turning of purpose, a purpose which involved the Pantheon and the emperor’s apotheosis.


Sacred Proportions of the Sun

The name “Pantheon” had a deeper meaning according to ancient historians”:

“It has this name, perhaps because it received among the images which decorated it the statues of many gods, including Mars and Venus; but my own opinion of the name is that, because of its vaulted roof, it resembles the heavens.” e

Finding The Form – The dome and its symbolism is what’s important. The dome maps a relationship of earth and man to heaven. This is why they went to such great effort to make a solid concrete ceiling.The floor tiles give an overall layout for how this done- a circle inside a square. The circle represents the celestial and the square the earthly. The form of the Pantheon is derived from the circle and square in plan and section view.The Pantheon’s design begins with a square subdivided into a grid. Certain points of the grid intersect circles. These intersection points help a designer form a circle from rectilinear lines. Curves are rendered in much the same way by modern computers using rectilinear perspective.
(microbe– flickr/creative commons license)

If we take these circles and arrange them into overlapping quadrants, we render a complex star pattern. The intersections of circles form an 18 pointed star, which divides the Pantheon into 18-part quadrants. These intersection points also render a five-pointed star. These stars give us the over-all dimensions for the Greek entrance pronaos.

The section view of the Pantheon likewise starts out with a subdivided grid. A rectangular form derives from fairly simple geometric subdivisions.

Apply the same circles and stars in section view, and we find that the intersection points bring the rectilinear form together with curves. Overlap the circles at the top to find the dimensions of the beehive drum around the outside of the dome and the oculus.

The Bi Disc in China used the same design method in 2-dimensions. Concenric circles reconciled with a square to uncover sacred dimensions. “It is found that these objects testify to… the notion of a covering sky (gaitian) that revolves around a central axis, the cycle of the Ten Suns, and the use of an early form of the carpenter’s square.” f

Movement Of The Sun – We know the summer equinox determined the location of the Pantheon. It also has a lot to do with the Pantheon’s form and function.

Why does the Pantheon face north? Temples always face east or west, sometimes south, never north. Buildings in general should not face north. The northern entrance makes the Pantheon feel cold, dark, and harder to enjoy.

Well, that was on purpose. The northern axis respects the Mausoleum of Augustus, as we discussed. It also dramatizes the entrance into sunlight and the building’s symbolic function as a time keeper. The hemicyclium was a necessary device in any city to tell the days and hours. The Pantheon took on this role- symbolically. It makes symbolic connections through time.

At the autumn equinox, the light of the oculus reaches the upper hemisphere of the coffered dome. At the winter solstice it reaches its height. At spring equinox it touches the base of the dome and shines through the grill above the front door. At the summer solstice it is totally on the floor. g

The important date is April 21, the anniversary of Rome’s founding. This is when the front entrance is totally illuminated, when the sun is at high noon.

Three of the niches in the walls get illuminated in the course of the sun. Just like at Abu Simbel, only three of the statues of the gods receive light, each once a year.

The sun shines through the grill above the the door at noon at the spring equinox. The light filters through to the front entrance and invites the visitor to pass through the dark doors to a heavenly splendor inside. An aperture can also be seen above the entrance to the Treasury of Atreus. The Treasury’s aperture above the entrance is triangular, like the pediment in front of the Pantheon.A veil of separation is frequently used in temples to give visitors a murky glimpse or quick communication with deity inside.The dimensions of the oculus, door, and grill were carefully proportioned to make these events on these dates stand out.
(mabris1– flickr/creative commons license)

The appearance of a comet at Julius Caeser’s funeral was another date commemorated by the Pantheon. “But if we take observations through the oculus on the supposed dates of the sighting of Caesar’s comet in 44 BC- within the period of 20-30 July… then we find that the last part of the sky to be visible through the oculus just before sunrise is that band of sky in which the comet may have been placed.” h

Domus Aurea Palace – The octagonal room at Nero’s palace has a domed ceiling with a large oculus. Built in the years before the Pantheon, it provided a precedent for solar markings of important dates. The noon suns hits directly on the room’s entrance. The travel of the sun revolves around October 13, the date of Nero’s accession as emperor. g And the solar solstice and equinoxes are marked.The visitor is able to find his place on earth and in a cosmic order. The architecture is a device for mapping relevance of date and time.The floor of the Pantheon swells upward at the center to visually emphasize the horizon break in the celestial sphere, a similar design device as that used at the Parthenon. Materials were carefully fashioned, such as the marble sheathing on the interior which was attached to the brick with hidden bronze clamps. It shimmers seamlessly in the sun to give the effect of an unbroken heavenly surface.
(benjami– flickr/creative commons license)

Mistake In The Pediment Construction?

The pediment on the Greek pronaos is lower than the pediment on the Rotunda. It appears that the pronaos was built 13.5ft (4m) too short and couldn’t reach where it was supposed to meet the main building. Archeologists universally blame this on a flaw in construction. Maybe the columns were too high for what the stone could support.

First, consider the design of this front porch. The columns are unfluted Egyptian gray granite. One of the purposes of fluting is to make the columns appear thinner than they really are. If the columns needed to be beefed up to reach taller heights, the builder could have simply made them wider and added fluting.

The roof is sheathed in bronze and has imitation barrel vaulted ceilings. The builders could have used a lighter roofing material. Clearly, structural overload was not the problem. And if it was a mistake, why did they leave behind evidence of the mistake? They could have easily chiseled away the pediment outline from the Rotunda.

The double pediment was not a mistake.

As we already discussed, the overall dimensions of the front pronaos was determined by the circular and rectilinear grids for the overall form. It is united as part of the overall form. A front view with the same circles, stars, and intersection points reveal how the pediments fit in to the overall design. The pentagram star unifies both pediments with the columns, rotunda, and dome drum. The existing columns fit perfectly with the Pantheon’s geometric design.

The pentagram determines the slope of the pediment, which explains why the triangle is steeper than what was typical for temples.

The base of the upper pediment is at the center of the building’s design composition. It is here that a bronze eagle was originally placed on the lower pediment, with spread wings and a wreath held in the beak.i This point of overlap of the pediments is the focal point of the entire building.

The upper pediment rises 100ft to its tip at the base of the dome, which is the same height as the obelisk in front of the Pantheon (30m). The lower pediment rises 84 ft, the same height as the obelisk in front of St. Peter’s Basillica g, which map-makers skewed to appear in axis with the Pantheon.


Similarities To Stonehenge

The dimensions of Pantheon fit perfectly with Stonehenge. If we take Stonehenge at roughly half scale and overlay it on the Pantheon, we see Stonehenge’s trench and banks perfectly align with the walls of Pantheon.


The Aubrey holes align with the rotunda’s columns. The Aubrey holes date back to 3,000 BC and contained some of the first features built at Stonehenge. They likely contained posts which suspended some kind of firmament over the site or held blue stones. k The circle’s diameter of 282 ft is half the diameter of the Pantheon dome (142 ft).

The outer bluestones align with the outside circumference of the oculus, and the Trilithon horseshoe aligns with the inside circumference of the oculus.

Did Stonehenge serve a similar solar function as the Pantheon? We know that Stonehenge tracked equinoxes, solstices, and other time markers. We see similarities in its religious function to Pantheon and other temples as a procession through states of holiness and cosmic rings. It appears these two monuments served very similar functions.

But considering the Trilithon stones track the moonrise, moonset, sunrise, and sunset at winter and summer solstice, perhaps the Pantheon’s oculus has a similar function. Or maybe the proportions on the two sites were simply derived using similar geometry.


Later Architects Influenced


Brunelleschi – Filippo Brunellesci designed the dome for the Florence cathedral in 1420. The original design by Neri had an oculus at the top like the Pantheon. Brunellesci did away with the oculus, but used the Pantheon as a model for the structure. He used brick instead of concrete because the original formula had been forgotten and wooden forms for concrete would be impractical at such a great height. He used a double shell of marble and sandstone to keep the weight down.
(auggie tolosa– flickr/creative commons license)
Michelangelo & Brunellesci – The design for the dome at St. Peters was inspired by the Pantheon in much the same way, except that Bramante’s plan was supported by four piers instead of a continuous wall. The geometry of the St. Peter’s dome became more complex with four smaller domes and a grid of columns and piers.Michelangelo used similar geometric methods of incorporating curves and rectilinear proportions, and he took it further with St. Peters. He also converged very different design elements in much the same spirit as the Pantheon. This became a favorite tactic of the Baroque movement, as design languages frequently became mixed and matched.
(Images George Rex– flickr/creative commons license)

Burial sites – Michelangelo and others styled burial sites after the Pantheon. Despite Hadrian’s attempt to separate the dome from the tomb, the Pantheon came to be popularly associated with burial, well into the 1800s.

© Benjamin Blankenbehler 2014

Drawings & Citations

Floor plan Roof plan Section Cross section
Front elevation Pronaos section Section detail Interior elevation
Construction Interior perspective Interior perspective Site perspective
Front perspective Pronaos perspective Pronaos perspective Front perspective





(featured images by Adrian Pingstone on Wikipedia/public domain)

Report of “protected” ruins on Surinam borders

Large detailed map of Suriname

The ruins are suposed to be in the mountainous areas at the end of the rivers that connect to the sea.

Perhaps there is more information on this.

A5735 Goeje, C. H. de 53.0000 SR 1908 Verslag der Toemak Hoemak expeditie Account of the Tumuc-Humac expedition. Tijdschr Ned Aar Genoot 25: 945-1168. 54,55 A

Texts from Antoine Gigal Lecture

TEXTS Antoine Gigal Lecture Megalithomania South Africa for further research

– Al Biruni 973AD
– ibn Abdel alhokim (akbar Ezzeman Manuscript, kept at oxford) Pharao Saurid, learned of flood and build pyramid to protect knowledge and population  UNDER it.

– Papyrus of Abu Hormeis – in coptic, translated in arabic in 822, a copy of olders docs explains that before a great flood the king saurid built the great pyramid to save the
population UNDER it.

– Book of the celestial cow – has a flood chapter title is history of the destruction of humanity

– Book of the ritual/ Book of the revelation – Story of a boat, an ark saving soulds it was the ark boat of the god Nnu. Nnu, nun, is called the lord of the flood in tutmosis III inscription in Luxor

– Chapter 64, book of the death (book to come to light of the day) Sir wallis budge says its coming forth by day from the subterranean world. Flood castrophy


The Mayan Ballplayer with elongated head

Falsely identified as an ancient astronaut in a spacesuite, if one see the codex one can see its a ballplayer in his costume.

What is however more than interesting is his elongated head like the Paracas skulls, what is debated if this was a head binding practice.



English: M2007 187 2 Ballplayer Figure Guatemala, Peten region 500-850 A.D.
Author LACMA

Zawyet El Aryan / Pyramid of Baka / MenKaure

Zawyet El Aryan / Pyramid of Baka
Since 1960, much of the area near Zawyet El Aryan has been restricted for use as a military base. Access to the two pyramids has been restricted since 1964. No excavations are allowed, the original necropolis is overbuilt with military bungalows, and the shaft of the northern “unfinished” pyramid has allegedly been misused as a trash dump. The condition of both burial shafts is uncertain and most possibly disastrous.
The sarcophagus in the northern pyramid shaft is nothing more than spectacular with a large oval lid, with the KNOBS as seen on Peruvian masonry, the Osireion, the valley temple and Menkaures Pyramid casing stones and numerous other worldly megaliths.
Noteworthy also are the finds in Asuka, Japan, they look pretty similar to the Egyptian ones to me. Miyakozuka pyramid shaped tomb, just like a “step pyramid in eypt.” Japan is definitely of interest as well.

The layer pyramid:

This seems to have similar structure to the pyramid at saqqare of sekhemet.

The Buried Pyramid ( was a previously unknown structure until, in 1951, Egyptologist Zakaria Goneim noticed the odd rectangular shape in the desert while excavating the nearby Unas complex. Criticism of Goneim and his subsequent suicide on January 12, 1959 dampened the interest in the pyramid and investigation was left incomplete.


That pyramid may be visited, but the public is not allowed access to the base and substructures.

There is something else interesting about this. Besides the archeologist excavating this particular pyramid committed suicide and its similar setup to the southern pyramid a zawyat el aryan, it also links to what egyptologist call the most ancient structure known in egypt. The square of Gisr El Mudir:



A good writeup is here:

Pyramids of Zawyet el-Aryan

Quote: During Barsanti’s excavations, archaeologists were puzzled when the trench filled with rainwater which very quickly drained to about a metre deep, suggesting that there may have been an undiscovered passage or chamber beneath the trench. Unfortunately the structure has never been further investigated because of its inaccessibility in the military zone.

The Northern pyramid

Large blocks of limestone and granite lie on the floor of the trench and may have been intended for use in the burial chamber. At the bottom of the trench there was a huge oval pink granite sarcophagus, which may or may not belong to the structure.

Significantly, Petrie found fragments of a similar styled sarcophagus while excavating Djedefre’s complex at Abu Rawash. (The revised edition of Petrie, The Pyramids and temples of Gizeh, p. 54.)



The deep T- shaped shafts are of interest to me, placing a sarcophagus deep under ground level.

The knobs we see on the lid of the sarcophagus are seen elsewhere as indicated above, for one Menkaur pyramid’s casing stones. What is fantastic is how the rough stones go so smoothly to perfectly flat. This is where the entrance sits. On the other side of the pyramid is a similar depression. We might find another entrance there in the future since the flat part marked the entrance. Pictures from:

Pyramid of  RaDjedef(Djedefre) also has a T shaped shaft underneath.

The layout of Radjedef’s Pyramid at Abu Roash has a T shape underground.

Left from it in above picture seems another structure

First picture ©

Egyptologist, Mark Lehner, studied Radjedef’s pyramid at Abu Roash in his book, ‘The Complete Pyramids’, and concluded that pyramids of the older ‘Djoser’ style (i.e. the Third Dynasty King who built what is now regarded as the prototype to all subsequent Egyptian pyramids; the step pyramid at Sakarra) were orientated north-south, and, from the time of the later Meidum Pyramid onward (which is attributed to Radjedef’s grandfather, Sneferu), were aligned east-west. Lehner and others believe that Radjedef departed from the style of the day and returned to an earlier blueprint when he constructed his pyramid at Abu Roash, for it clearly has a north-south alignment.

Ancient Tunnel Discovered in Sacred Inca City of Cuzco

Source original article:

With aditions and modifications and aditions of further information by Stijn van den Hoven

The Secret of the Andes: Anselm Pi Rambla at the True Legends Conference 2017 in Branson (Missouri). In his lecture “The Secret of the Andes”, has unveiled and brought important archeological evidence, demonstrating the existence of a very advanced ancient civilization in the Andes Mountains.

This find may form part of a series of galleries, chambers, fountains and
ancient mausoleums located under the ancient Incan city of Cuzco.


Original press article in spanish:

A tunnel measuring 2 km in length, linking the Koricancha temple with the fortress of Sacsayhuaman, located on the outskirts of the Peruvian city of Cuzco, was discovered by Spanish archaeologist Anselm Pi Rambla in the ancient Inca capital. The tunnel may form part of a series of galleries, chambers, fountains and ancient mausoleums which are probably under the city of Cuzco, according to measurements made by Pi Rambla as part of the Wirac508ocha Project, initiated in August 2000.

The Spanish scholar stated before the Peruvian Congress’s Cultural Commission that he had discovered the subterranean passageway, which in his opinion, “may change perspectives on Peruvian history.”

According to radar images obtained by Pi Rambla, the tunnel links directly to:

  1. The Temple of the Sun or Korikancha, Santa domingo church/comvent.
  2. The Convent of Santa Catalina or Marcahuasi
  3. The Cathedral or Temple of Inca Wiracocha (build on palaca of viracocha)
  4. The palace of Huascar (Extra information not on site. (It was erected in 1535 over a huge huaca that had a shrine of the old Lima valley’s cacique Taulichusco. ) Palacio de Gobierno. House of Pizzaro. The house of Francisco Pizarro was built over the Taulichusco´s house, the actual Govern Palace (Palacio de Gobierno), where nowadays the President of the Peruvian Republican lives.)
  5. The Temple of Manco Capac or Colcampata
  6. The Huamanmarca

All of these buildings are in a perfect astronomical alignment, which confirms that ancient Peruvians also guided their constructions by the location of the Sun, the Moon and the constellations.

Access to a tunnel at the Sacsayhuaman Fortress was already known, but it was condemned in 1923 to avoid the disappearances of curiosity seekers who entered it, since its trajectory was unknown.

The archaeologist explained that this would involve a “Pre-Inca citadel”, belonging to a culture that has yet to be considered..

“We calculate that it would be some 100 meters under Cuzco…the great question is ascertaining what age it belonged to,” adds the archaeologist.

In May, Pi Rambla will spearhead the excavation work aimed at confirming the location of the subterranean galleries which confirm the stories regarding an underground citadel in Cuzco. of chroniclers like:

Cieza de León - Crónicas del Perú - He wrote this book in four parts, but only the first was published during his lifetime; the remaining sections were not published until the 19th and 20th centuries.
Garcilaso de la Vega- “Commentaries of the Incas” -  born April 12, 1539 in Cuzco, Peru, the illegitimate son of Spaniard Sebastian Garcilaso de la Vega, and an Incan princess, reported that he personally knew that Sacsayhuaman had three towers.





(Underground Structures)



Ancient Inca Tunnels found under Cusco, Peru

Royal House of the Sun

The terraced pyramid at Sacsayhuaman is made of cyclopean polygonal masonry constructs over 1000 feet long, the largest block weighing 360 tons at a height of over 27 feet.

After his capture in Vilcabamba in 1572 the last Inca, Tupac Amaru, was incarcerated in Sacsayhuaman. The revolutionary leader Tupac Amaru II addressed his ultimatum for the Bishop of Cuzco to surrender the city from the hilltop sanctuary. Today the monument is used to present the pageant recreation of the religious portion of the prehistoric Festival of the Sun called Inti Raymi at the Winter Solstice June 24th.

“The fortress was a House of the Sun. Those of other nations were not able to enter the fortress, because it was a house of the sun. The largest and most magnificent work which the Inca ordered built to demonstrate their power and majesty was the fortress of Cuzco: Sacsayhuaman, the magnitude of which is incredible to those who have not seen it. Those who have seen and looked with attention believed that its greatness was made by way of enchantment and built by devils and not men, because the multitude of so many stones of such great size, such as those placed on the three terraces, caused vast speculation. The massive stones cut from the quarries were moved and fitted so that the joint hardly shows. To think how they could fit stones so immense and so well, where one cannot even insert the blade of a knife inbetween them!

This find may form part of a series of galleries, chambers, fountains and ancient mausoleums located under the ancient Incan city of Cuzco. A tunnel measuring 2 km in length, linking the Koricancha Sun Temple with the fortress of Sacsayhuaman (located on the hillside above the city of Cuzco), was discovered by Spanish archaeologist Anselm Pi Rambla, in the ancient Inca capital. The tunnel may form part of a series of galleries, chambers, fountains and ancient mausoleums under the city of Cuzco, according the Wiracocha Project, initiated in 2000.


The group stated before the Peruvian Congress’s Cultural Commission that they had discovered the subterranean passageway, which may change perspectives on Peruvian history.

According to radar images, the tunnel links directly to the Temple of the Sun or Korikancha, with the Convent of Santa Catalina, or with the Cathedral or Temple of Inca Wiracocha, with the palace of Huascar, the Temple of Manco Capac or perhaps Colcampata and Huamanmarca.


All of these buildings are in a perfect astronomical alignment, confirming that ancient Peruvians also guided their constructions by the location of the Sun, the Moon and the constellations. Access to a tunnel at the Sacsayhuaman Fortress was already known, but it was condemned in 1923 to avoid the disappearances of curiosity seekers who entered it, since its trajectory was unknown.

The archaeologist explained that this would involve a “Pre-Inca citadel”, belonging to a culture that has yet to be considered. “We calculate that it would be some 100 meters under Cuzco…the great question is ascertaining what age it belonged to,” said the archaeologist. Excavation work aimed at confirming the location of the subterranean galleries confirm the stories of chroniclers like Garcilaso de la Vega and Cieza de León regarding an underground citadel in Cuzco.

This legacy of a civilization advanced beyond our own was capable of creating vast underground chambers, of which the surface markers point the way to the ingress. Engineering such vast chambers has been likened to the impact of contact with an advanced culture, and the discovery of the Fourth Root race, the so-called Atlantean civilization destroyed by the last earth upheavel.”

Moving big stones

“High tech cranes” or “alien spaceships” are not needed to move big rocks.  Sheer manpower, sleds (with water poured in front to reduce friction), elephants and long earth ramps can do a lot.

Even canals, like present in Cambodia at Angkor what and boats take little animals to move heavy stuff.

Yet Baalbek with its large stones, and uneven surfaces still raises questions to how these where quarried and later moved.


Also for example Machu Picchu at altitude provides issue for getting stones up as more site sin Peru that are on mountain sides.

Could the ancients perhaps “make stones” using alchemy like our cement besides the obvious quarrying?

That certainly would explain a lot, yet in our age we still can’t poor granite artificially or make other hard rocks they used easily. Also obvious cut marks are seen and ‘melted like rocks’ straight through pebbles like with a diamond saw as seen here in Mycenae Greece.


Those questions still remain unanswered.



Holes in the Sphinx, hidden chambers or robbers tunnels?

The following images of the head hole/tunnel and the back shaft/tunnel need to be saved to show there are numerous entrances into the interior sphinx.


Vivant Denon’s sketch of the sphinx in 1798 depicts a man being pulled out of the head of sphinx.


The head hole. scaffolding may 1990


There is also something below the right ear:



And there is a compartment behind the dream stele where Hawass has been seen in.



And next to the sphinx an alledged robbers tunnel:



Behind the dream stele:


Shaft the back of the Sphinx and the video of it. 2009 video with mark lehner.

There are first hand accounts of water running under the sphinx like a river. Seen from the top of the sphinx down.

Another account from a harvard professor of archeology is the 1920 is of extreem further interest.

Even though such claims of inside temples, from the oldest photo’s of the sphinx, one can see it was in a sorry state, far from what we see today, which is reconstruction of the last 100 years. The sphinx was cracked in half at the back with deep fishers going to the other side. Easily seen by the shadows in these old pictures. High res image for you to check/zoom:


Ancient Meso American Sites

These sites are dated and the oldest civilizations in the americas. Unknown to many and also they existed at a similar time as the Egyptian and Indian cultures. Future research must show if these where seafaring settlers from these countries. These are the oldest meso american pyramids.



Note the circle at the base of the pyramid.

Six earth-and-rock mounds rise out of the windswept desert of the SupeValley near the coast of Peru. Dunelike and immense, they appear to be nature’s handiwork, forlorn outposts in an arid region squeezed between the Pacific Ocean and the folds of the Andean Cordillera. But looks deceive. These are human-made pyramids, and compelling new evidence indicates they are the remains of a city that flourished nearly 5,000 years ago. If true, it would be the oldest urban center in the Americas and among the most ancient in all the world.

Research developed by Peruvian archaeologist Ruth Shady Solís of San Marcos University suggests that Caral, as the 150-acre complex of pyramids, plazas and residential buildings is known, was a thriving metropolis as Egypt’s great pyramids were being built. The energetic archaeologist believes that Caral may also answer nagging questions about the long-mysterious origins of the Inca, the civilization that once stretched from modern-day Ecuador to central Chile and gave rise to such cities as Cuzco and Machu Picchu. Caral may even hold a key to the origins of civilizations everywhere.

Though discovered in 1905, Caral first drew little attention, largely because archaeologists believed the complex structures were fairly recent. But the monumental scale of the pyramids had long tantalized Shady. “When I first arrived in the valley in 1994, I was overwhelmed,” she says. “This place is somewhere between the seat of the gods and the home of man.” She began excavations two years later, braving primitive conditions on a tight budget. Fourteen miles from the coast and 120 miles north of Peru’s capital city of Lima, Caral lies in a desert region that lacks paved roads, electricity and public water. Shady, who enlisted 25 Peruvian soldiers to help with the excavations, often used her own money to advance the work.

For two months she and her crew searched for the broken remains of pots and containers, called potsherds, that most such sites contain. Not finding any only made her more excited; it meant Caral could be what archaeologists term pre-ceramic, or existing before the advent of pot-firing technology in the area. Shady eventually concluded that Caral predated Olmec settlements to the north by 1,000 years. But colleagues remained skeptical. She needed proof.

In 1996, Shady’s team began the mammoth task of excavating Pirámide Mayor, the largest of the pyramids. After carefully clearing away several millennia’s worth of rubble and sand, they unearthed staircases, circular walls covered with remnants of colored plaster, and squared brickwork. Finally, in the foundation, they found the preserved remains of reeds woven into bags, known as shicras. The original workers, she surmised, must have filled these bags with stones from a hillside quarry a mile away and laid them atop one another inside retaining walls, gradually giving rise to the city of Caral’s immense structures.

Shady knew that the reeds were ideal subjects for radiocarbon dating and could make her case. In 1999, she sent samples of them to Jonathan Haas at Chicago’s FieldMuseum and to Winifred Creamer at NorthernIllinoisUniversity. In December 2000, Shady’s suspicions were confirmed: the reeds were 4,600 years old. She took the news calmly, but Haas says he “was virtually in hysterics for three days afterward.” In the April 27, 2001, issue of the journal Science, the three archaeologists reported that Caral and the other ruins of the SupeValley are “the locus of some of the earliest population concentrations and corporate architecture in South America.” The news stunned other scientists. “It was almost unbelievable,” says Betty Meggers, an archaeologist at the Smithsonian Institution. “This data pushed back the oldest known dates for an urban center in the Americas by more than 1,000 years.”

What amazed archaeologists was not just the age but the complexity and scope of Caral. Pirámide Mayor alone covers an area nearly the size of four football fields and is 60 feet tall. A 30-foot-wide staircase rises from a sunken circular plaza at the foot of the pyramid, passing over three terraced levels until it reaches the top of the platform, which contains the remains of an atrium and a large fireplace. Thousands of manual laborers would have been needed to build such a mammoth project, not even counting the many architects, craftsmen, supervisors and other managers. Inside a ring of platform pyramids lies a large sunken amphitheater, which could have held many hundreds of people during civic or religious events. Inside the amphitheater, Shady’s team found 32 flutes made of pelican and condor bones. And, in April 2002, they uncovered 37 cornets of deer and llama bones. “Clearly, music played an important role in their society,” says Shady.

The perimeter of Caral holds a series of smaller mounds, various buildings and residential complexes. Shady discovered a hierarchy in living arrangements: large, well-kept rooms atop the pyramids for the elite, ground-level complexes for craftsmen, and shabbier outlying shantytowns for workers.

But why had Caral been built in the first place? More important, why would people living comfortably in small communities perched on the Pacific Ocean with easy access to abundant marine food choose to move inland to an inhospitable desert? If she could answer this question, Shady believed she might begin to unravel one of the knottiest questions in the field of anthropology today: What causes civilizations to arise? And what was it about the desert landscape of Peru’s SupeValley that caused a complex, hierarchical society to flourish there?

Her excavations convinced Shady that Caral had served as a major trade center for the region, ranging from the rain forests of the Amazon to the high forests of the Andes. She found fragments of the fruit of the achiote, a plant still used today in the rain forest as an aphrodisiac. And she found necklaces of snails and the seeds of the coca plant, neither of which was native to Caral. This rich trading environment, Shady believes, gave rise to an elite group that did not take part in the production of food, allowing them to become priests and planners, builders and designers. Thus, the class distinctions elemental to an urban society emerged.

But what sustained such a trading center and drew travelers to it? Was it food? Shady and her team found the remains of sardines and anchovies, which must have come from the coast 14 miles to the west, in the excavations. But they also found evidence that the Caral people ate squash, sweet potatoes and beans. Shady theorized that Caral’s early farmers diverted area rivers into trenches and canals, which still crisscross the SupeValley today, to irrigate their fields. But because she found no traces of maize (corn) or other grains, which can be traded or stored and used to tide a population over in difficult times, she concluded that Caral’s trade leverage was not based on stockpiling food supplies.

It was evidence of another crop in the excavations that gave Shady the best clue to the mystery of Caral’s success. In nearly every excavated building, her team discovered great quantities of cotton seeds, fibers and textiles. Her theory fell into place when a large fishing net, unearthed at an unrelated dig on Peru’s coast, turned out to be as old as Caral. “The farmers of Caral grew the cotton that the fishermen needed to make the nets,” Shady speculates. “And the fishermen gave them shellfish and dried fish in exchange for these nets.” In essence, the people of Caral enabled fishermen to work with larger and more effective nets, which made the resources of the sea more readily available. The Caral people probably used dried squash as flotation devices for nets and also as containers, thus obviating any need for ceramics.

Eventually Caral would spawn 17 other pyramid complexes scattered across the 35-square-mile area of the SupeValley. Then, around 1600 B.C., for reasons that may never be answered, the Caral civilization toppled, though it didn’t disappear overnight. “They had time to protect some of their architectural structures, burying them discreetly,” says Shady. Other nearby areas, such as Chupacigarro, Lurihuasi and Miraya, became centers of power. But based on Caral’s size and scope, Shady believes that it is indeed the mother city of the Incan civilization.

She plans to continue excavating Caral and says she would someday like to build a museum on the site. “So many questions still remain,” she says. “Who were these people? How did they control the other populations? What was their main god?”




Era de Pando

Ruth Shady already explore the ruins in 2000, and name them “Era de Pando”.  Note the circle at the base of the pyramid, just like in caral.,-77.609836,5424m/data=!3m1!1e3




Huaca Prieta

One of the earliest groups in Peru to be studied were the Huaca Prieta people, who lived at the site of that name around 3500 BC to 2300 BC. These hunter and gatherers began simple agriculture, growing cotton and varieties of bean and pepper, but corn, now a national staple, was unheard of. Finds of simple nets and hooks indicate that they primarily ate seafood. Homes were single-room shacks half buried in the ground, and most of what is known about these folks has been deduced from their middens, or garbage piles. It seems that they were a Stone Age people who didn’t use jewelry, but had developed netting and weaving. At their most artistic, they decorated dried gourds with simple carvings; similarly decorated gourds are produced today as a Peruvian handicraft. Hot stones may have been dropped into these gourds to cook food.


Huaca Prieta is a very old site in the Chicama Valley along the coast of the Pacific Ocean. It is believed the people were both fishermen and farmers
At Huaca Prieta are monumental ceremonial mounds, built around 2500 B.C., with numerous residential mounds, stairways, plazas, a ceremonial center and crops. Highly skilled twined cotton weaving was found, as well as gourds carved with stylized geometric motifs. Here again are found architecture, platforms, where no ceramics have been found, like Las Haldas, El Paraido and Chuquintanta, located on the central Peruvian coast. All have various residential complexes of clay and stone constructed by building rooms and terraces one on top of another, much the same as in the Pueblo towns of the southwestern United States. Another important Pre-Ceramic site is Kotosh in the northern highlands of Peru. At Kotosh, terraced temples were made of fieldstone set in earth and decorated with clay reliefs of crossed hands, and also the Pre-Ceramic sites of Chavín de Huántar and Paracas (see previous posts of this series).
All of these cultures and sites have at least one thing in common—the building of monumental structures before they seem to have had or developed ceramics.

The site of Huaca Prieta, also called Chicama, in northern coastal Peru, located at the mouth of the Chicama River
Excavations of Huaca Prieta, a large complex stone and earth platform mound, built in several stages, replete with a massive access ramp and numerous burials, have revealed subterranean pit dwellings, and that the people grew squash chilies, and cotton as well as caught fish, and wove baskets and numerous cloth. The impressive mound measures 453 feet by 203 feet, and 105 feet high (10 stories). There are stone-faced terrace rooms on the eastern and western slopes, with a large sunken plaza 82 feet in diameter, with stone-faced stepped platforms and small masonry rooms.
A ramp 130 feet by 115 feet was constructed leading up to the summit of the mound from the northeast slope. 75 feet of mound is above the present-day ground surface, the recent excavations have established that 30 feet of mound building exists below the present surface, suggesting an increase in height of the surface level of some thirty feet.

Top: Junius Bouton Bird excavating Huaca Prieto for ten months in 1946-1947; Bottom: Junius and wife Peggy Bird (center right), along with Bob Bird (background) and Elvira Sanchez (left) sorting material from sifters during the original field work at Huaca Prieta 1946-1947
Early excavations conducted by pioneer archaeologist Julius Bird in the 1940s, made this the first pre-ceramic site excavated. The findings indicated that the site’s builders were sedentary people living in pit-houses, who cultivated crops as a supplement to marine fishing. The builders used a broad range of technology, including stone, bone and wood tools, bottle gourds, basketry and textiles. Cotton weaving and netting were used with some textiles involved iconographic styles with intricate designs.
As Bird himself wrote of the 4000 cotton fabrics and 2000 fragments he found: “The fact that some of the textiles rank high among the finest fabrics ever produced should lead us in all humility to seek not only a knowledge of their origin and development, but also a better understanding of what they actually represent in terms of human accomplishment.”
Within twelve miles of the mound, 38 small pre-ceramic domestic residential sites have been found that were occupied between the shoreline and he backwater wetlands during the mound construction period. These cobblestone mounds form small hamlets or communities comprised of several households and an open plaza-like area, and contained domestic hearths, food preparation areas, middens (refuse heaps) and residential structures—but do not contain the black soot and ash found at Huaca Prieta. Evidently, the mound at Huaca Prieta was built and maintained by people living at these sites located on both the coastal and inland sides of the estuarine wetlands.

Top: The first excavation into a mound of dirt at Huata Prieta suspected of being manmade; Bottom: Soon the structure, steps and pyramid begins to take shape
East of the domestic sites were discovered several raised agricultural platforms, which were built in the wetlands where beans, squash and chili peppers were grown. Instead of ceramics, workers have found over 10,000 fragments of cut and carved bottle gourds—most were bowls with incurving rims, jars with constricted mouths, small spherical containers, dippers and ladles. The bowls were decorated with incisions and engravings, including geometric cross-hatching and stylized faces.
The fishermen used bottle gourds as floats and to balance the net lines, and animals recovered at the site included llamas, dogs, and deer. There were also remains of pre-ceramic maize, coca, peanut, cherimoya, sweet potato, quinoa, avocado, yuca, manioc and pacae, as well as various tubers.
These first people of Huaca Prieto lived in simple dwellings—rooms lined with stone and roofs made of wood and whalebone—grew crops and fished, and were highly skilled with cotton textiles—growing long-stranded high qualify cotton, and produced dyes of over 100 different shades of color in their cloth, weaving figures of men, sea creatures, and animals into the multi-colored yarn. They and those that followed, developed such a high quality cotton industry that by the time the Spanish arrived, the newcomers mistook the cloth for silk.
They also had fireplaces, chimneys, storage pits, dumpsters, food packaging and other indicators of domestic occupation, all showing a high social complexity.

While they did not make earthenware (at least none has been found at their sites), they made vessels out of gourds that they incised with elaborate geometric designs, as well as depictions of human beings, condors, snakes, and crabs, making them the earliest dated examples of graphic art in the Americas.
According to Margaret A. Towle (The Ethnobotany of Pre-Columbian Peru), these sites along the north coastal area of Peru “resemble one another and fit into a large uninterrupted cultural sequence which extends from the pre-ceramic early agricultural epoch, in which maize is lacking, into a later ceramic epoch in which maize occurs.” And recent chronological data reported in Antiquity in 2012 suggests that the complexity of the mound construction is singular, with no direct antecedents (meaning it was the first occupation of the area and those inhabitants started off with building the complex mound).
This means, contrary to most archaeological assumptions, that nothing existed at Huaca Prieto before the mound (pyramid) was built. There was no earlier diffusion found, no previous period of development or human occupation. The people who first settled Huaca Prieto were an advanced pre-ceramic culture who evidently had not developed or made earthenware. By comparison, when the Jaredites settled in the promised land, they were an advanced culture; when the Nephites settled in the Land of Promise, they were an advanced culture.


The Nazca capital

Cahuachi,[1] in Peru, was a major ceremonial center of the Nazca culture, based from 1 AD to about 500 AD in the coastal area of the Central Andes. It overlooked some of the Nazca lines. The Italian archaeologist Giuseppe Orefici has been excavating at the site for the past few decades. The site contains over 40 mounds topped with adobe structures. The huge architectural complex covers 0.6 sq. miles (1.5 km2).The American archeologist Helaine Silverman has also conducted long term, multi-stage research and written about the full context of Nazca society at Cahuachi, published in a lengthy study in 1993. The past several years long time researcher Omar Faizi has conducted in depth study of the Nazca lines with startling conclusions to his study.

Scholars once thought the site was the capital of the Nazca state but have determined that the permanent population was quite small. They believe that it was a pilgrimage center, whose population increased greatly in relation to major ceremonial events. New research has suggested that 40 of the mounds were natural hills modified to appear as artificial constructions. Support for the pilgrimage theory comes from archaeological evidence of sparse population at Cahuachi, the spatial patterning of the site, and ethnographic evidence from the Virgin of Yauca pilgrimage in the nearby Ica Valley.[2]


Batán Grande – Bosque de Pomac

December 29th, 2007 0 Comments

This incredible place is as interesting as it is beautiful. Baked in hot sun, cut in half by a river that floods the area in the rainy season and dotted with ancient pyramids, this dry forest of algarrobo trees on the old grounds of the Batán Grande suger-cane hacienda was the highlight of my time in Lambayeque.

35km north of Chiclayo, in Ferreñafe-Pitipo, is the green valley of the Río Leche. Green because it is covered in almost 6000 hectares of forest. It’s not often you get to see a forest on Peru’s desert coast, less often one with dozens of bird species and coastal foxes.

It’s not only a beautiful place that can be hiked around or driven around, its also a huge archaeological site. It was here that the Sicán developed, flourished and then destroyed everything they created for reasons unknown.

Some way into the grounds of the reserve is a large hill with a lookout point. Only by climbing this can you appreciate where you are. You see another hill poking out of the trees. And another, another and another. You may wonder why they are all pyramid shaped… perhaps its because these are gigantic man-made monuments.

Like all the adobe constructions in northern Peru, rains have all but completely wiped out the splendour of these monuments that now appear as if they have been melted. With a bit of imagination though, all is not lost. Remember, these where perfectly formed and decorated stepped pyramids, flattened a little from the peak so that buildings could be placed on top. Huge wide ramps that used more mud bricks than the pyramids themselves led up to them and in some cases even connected some of them together.

More damage has been caused to these structures that just by rain. The foresthad been part of an old hacienda, one that had existed since colonial times. The owner of the land decided instead of paying the peasants who lived there to grow his sugar cane he would be better off paying them to destroy the pyramids to look for gold. Many now have huge sections dug out of them. Locals tell me, from what they heard, this made the land owner very rich, so lots of gold artefacts must have been found and destroyed. The area has since been turned into a national park and protected.

Sicán iconography is dominated by the Sican Deity[4][5] It decorates all artistic media of the Sicán, including ceramics, metal works, and textiles.[3] The icon is most commonly represented with a mask face and upturned eyes.[2] Sometimes it may be shown with avian features, such as beaks, wings, and talons, which are evident in Early Sicán ceramics.[3] These avian features are related to Naylamp, the key figure in Sicán mythology. The name “Naylamp” was first mentioned by the Spanish chronicler Miguel Cabello Valboa, who referred to the Moche figure “Naymlap” in his 1586 Miscelánea Antártica. Later authors believe the form is Mochica Ñañlap, of which the first part is ñañ “waterfowl”; a connexion has been made between the Moche and Chimú cultures and the empire of Chimor and the Mochica language.

Sican gold cup, 850-1050

Naylamp was said to be the founder of the first dynasty of prehistoric kings in La Leche and Lambayeque valleys. In The Legend of Naylamp, first recorded in the 16th century by the Spanish chronicler Miguel Cabello de Balboa, Naylamp is said to have traveled on a balsa raft by sea to the Lambayeque shores. (!!) He founded a large city, and the 12 sons of his eldest son each founded a new city in the Lambayeque region.

These stories were put to test by Thor Heyerdale with his Kontiki expedition and the recent  tangaroa expedition.


When Naylamp died, he sprouted wings and flew off to another world (Nickle Arts Museum 2006, p. 18 and 65).

In 1978, Japanese Izumi Shimada, archaeologist and anthropologist began to study the area. It wasn’t until 1992 though that his team discovered a tomb of an elite member of Sicán society.

From this grave, 1.2 tonnes of precious metals in the form of jewellery and religious artefacts were removed, now stored in the National Sicán Museum.

Since, more tombs have been found, two either side of the Huaca Loro. At another pyramid 30m (100ft) long, Shimada’s team found the bones of a woman in her early 20s surrounded by figurines of Sicán gods, ceramics and objects in copper and gold. Another set of bones, clearly from a person of some stature, were found in a seated position accompanied by a metallic crown, shells, and ceramics.

The park entrance is just off the road that continues on to the town of Batangrande, you’ll see a big sign on the left. There you will find a building used by archaeologists, and official guides of the project – trained locals. Very few tourists make it here, despite it being the best attraction Lambayeque has in my opinion.


Ancient Settlement in Lima Region, Peru

One of the towns of the Caral-Supe culture (3000-1800 BCE) on the left bank of the Rio Supe.

They are building new settlements on this site

The double headed eagle

A very good research document on the subject: chariton.ARC

Garuda ( Gandabherunda)



Gandabherunda, in Belgavi, Shimoga (Shivamogga) district of Karnataka

A brief note ;
The Gandaberunda (also known as the Berunda) is a two-headed mythological bird of Hindu mythology thought to possess magical strength.
Gandaberunda is the official emblem of Karnataka state government.It was the royal insignia of erstwhile Mysore kingdom.Even after five centuries its first usage in the mints for making coins during the period of Vijayanagar empire around 1510, the Gandaberunda is still flying high as the symbol of seat of power of Karnataka – the official insignia of State.
In order to demonstrate its immense strength, Gandaberunda bird is said to be clutching elephants in his talons and beaks. To clearly depict and read the two-headed bird figure holding snakes in its beak on several Madurai coins, the bird is said to be a gigantic eagle. Sometimes, it is also considered a cross between an eagle and a bird. In several temple of Karnataka, Gandaberunda bird is worshipped as an incarnation of Vishnu. It is also a physical form of the Narasimha avatar of Mahavishnu. It is said that after the slaying of Hiranyakashipu, Lord Vishnu was so filled with rage that the demi gods feared him. To put an end to his anger and calm him down, Lord Shiva who was the best friend of Narayana, incarnated himself as Sharabha avatar (a beast with a part lion and part eagle body). Vishnu incarnated himself as Gandaberunda out of rage, and Gandaberunda feared Sharabha. So, there was a great struggle that continued for 18 days till Gandaberunda tore apart Sarabha, to calm down.
Historically it has been used in the crests and official seals of the: Chalukyas, Chagis,
Kota Kings (Dharanikota Kings), Hoysalas, Keladi Chiefs, Kadambas, Nandyalas (Vijayanagara Empire), Gobburis (Vijayanagara Empire),Wodeyars of Mysore


        For a proper description of the evolution of the Gandabherunda which is the Royal Insignia in Mysore, we have to go back to tradition in the first instance. Vishnu became incarnate as Narasimha to destroy the demon Hiranyakasipu and to rescue his devotee Prahlada and the mad fury of Vishnu threatened the destruction of the Universe. Siva assumed the form of a Sarabha which was the terror of the lion. Thereupon tradition proceeds, Vishnu immediately took the form of Gandabherunda which is superior to Sarabha and lives on its flesh. It is this Gandabherunda or the double headed eagle which forms the Royal Insignia or the Coat-of-Arms in Mysore. Coming to the Vedas we find that the winged disc and the tree of life are recognised as indicating the spread of Aryan culture in the Near East. Frankfort from a study of the North Syrian designs has argued that the winged sun-disc of the Egyptian monuments was the most impressive of symbols of the Egyptian empire in the second millennium B.C., and that it was combined with the Indo-European conception of a pillar supporting the sky – the sky being pictorially represented by means of the outstretched wings supported on one or two pillars and surmounted by a disc. There was also the Mesopotamian sun-standard, where the sun was represented by a pole with a star (?)  The pillar was also connected with the “Asherah” or ” sacred tree “(1). Therefore this motif in the Mitannian glyptic was a synthetic product of Egyptian, Mesopotamian and Aryan cultures. He quotes Holmberg(2), to show that Rig-Veda and Atharva Veda mention the cosmic pillar which separates heaven and earth and supports the first, a motive which


“Evolution of the Gandabherunda” by

Dr S.Srikanta Sastri


Double headed eagle stupa

a Double-headed eagle is seated from which the name of the Stupa has been derived. This motive is rather odd, to say the least, as it is originally Babylonian. It seems to have spread to Scythia, and introduced in the Punjab by the Saka rulers.


Garuda, the Mighty Eagle

Garuda is a large, mythical Eagle, which appears prominently in both Hindu and Buddhist mythology.  Incidentally, Garuda is also the Hindu name for the constellation Aquila. The Brahminy kite and Phoenix are considered to be the modern representations of Garuda. Garuda is the national symbol of Indonesia – this mighty creature is depicted as a large Javanese eagle


In Hinduism, Garuda is an Upadevata, a divine entity, and is depicted as the vahana or mount of Sri Maha Vishnu. Garuda is usually portrayed as being a strong man; having a golden, glowing body; with a white face, red wings, and an eagle’s beak. He is adorned with a crown on his head.  This very ancient deity is believed to have a gigantic form, large enough to block out the Surya Devata or the Sun God.

Garuda is widely known to be a permanent and sworn enemy of the Nagas, the ones belonging to the serpent race – it is believed that Garuda fed only on snakes. This behavior bears reference to the short-toed Eagle, which can be found in India. The image of Garuda is often worn as a charm or amulet, as it is believed to protect the wearer from snake attacks and poison. In fact, Garuda Vidya is the mantra which is often used as a palliative measure to destroy the ill-effects of snake poison and also to remove all sorts of evil the victim has been afflicted with.

Garuda is generally shown as winding the mighty Adisesha serpent on his left wrist and the serpent Gulika on his right wrist. The great serpent Vasuki winds around him to form his sacred thread. Takshaka, the cobra, winds on his hip to serve as a belt. He wears the serpent Karkotaka as his necklace. Further, the snakes Padma and Mahapadma are his earrings. The serpent Shankachuda adorns his hair as a crown.

Garuda is depicted as flanked by his two wives Rudra and Sukeerthi in an ancient Soumya Keshava temple in Bindiganavile in Karnataka state of India.

The Importance of Garuda in Hinduism


Garuda’s strong position in Hinduism can be estimated by the fact that two ancient Hindu texts, the Garudopanishad and the Garuda Purana, are both dedicated to him.  The Vedas make a mention of Garuda, referring to him as Syena, where this mighty Eagle is adored as the one who brought nectar from heaven to earth. The Puranas also talk about this deed, again equating Garuda with Syena (Sanskrit word for Eagle).

Double headed Hitiite eagle

Imperial double headed eagle



Charles Texier discovered cylindric seals with clearly visible two-headed eagle with spread wings. The double-headed eagle motif originally dates from c. 3800 BC.


By Bro. Arthur C. Parker, New York

Here is the type of article that makes glad the heart of an editor. With its lack of guesswork and with its wide-sweeping learning, it may well serve as a model and an inspiration to budding students. Brother Parker has recently completed an eight hundred page work on archaeology; when it is published we shall hope to review it in THE BUILDER. For some strange reason the two-headed eagle, for all its symbolical appeal, has seldomly attracted the attention of Masonic scholars. The most able treatment of it thus far has been the chapter in The Migration of Symbols by Count Goblet d’Alviela of Belgium; Brother Parker’s own article loses nothing by comparison with that chapter. Indeed, it carries the symbolism back to a far earlier time, and embodies more recent information. A student who may care to launch out upon researches of his own will find, along with the present article, that the references in the Encyclopedia Britannica, are valuable; consult the index volume under Double-headed Eagle; also see the articles on Heraldry and Hittites. For a reliable but rapid survey of what is known of the Hittites see Jastrow’s chapter on the subject in Exploration in Bible Lands, by Hilprecht (1903). See also Mackey’s Encyclopedia, Vol. I., page 225; and Ars Quatuor Coronatorum, Vol. III, page 104.

THERE IS SCARCELY a symbol in any of the philosophical or chivalric degrees of the Scottish Rite so striking in design and import as that of the double-headed eagle.

The tau cross and serpent of the Twenty-fifth Degree, the sun of the Twenty-eighth Degree, and the cross of St. Andrew in the Twenty-ninth Degree are indeed fraught with deep meaning, both historic and esoteric, but none can claim a more romantic or significant history than that of the Thirtieth Degree, that of the Grand Elect Knight Kadosh, or Knight of the Black and White Eagle. As an emblem this eagle is the epitome of religious and symbolic history, and to trace the winding flight of the double-headed bird is to survey the whole course of civilization, from its grey dawn north of the Persian gulf to this modern World. Its flight from the plains of Sumeria marks the rise and fall of the great mother religions of the world, and it was well on its journey, by some fifteen hundred years, when Moses found a name for the God of Israel.

When our ancient brethren, the holy Crusaders, passed through Byzantium on their way to the tomb of the Saviour, the double-headed eagle which they saw embroidered in gold on heavy banners of silk, borne aloft by the Seljuk Turks, had been four thousand years on its way. To these same Crusaders this emblem was an honoured one, and though the enemy displayed it, yet they would fight to death for its possession and in triumph bear it, dripping with blood, to their encampments on the Levantine shore. It was from this Eastern Empire that the knights took this banner to adorn the courts of Charlemagne, and as a sacred relic hung it in the great cathedrals, whose architects and masons had so often been honoured by this Emperor of the West.

From whence came this two-headed eagle, and how came it to be associated with Scottish Rite Masonry? The last part of this question is easier to answer than the first, for there is direct testimony that Frederick of Prussia supplied this crest during the formative stages of the Rite, but neither Frederick nor indeed Prussia could claim the exclusive right the use or to bestow it. It is the imperial emblem of Russia, Austria, Serbia and other portions of the disrupted Holy Roman Empire, and Prussia adopted the emblem long after it had flown over Byzantium as the royal arms of the “Emperors of the East and West.”

The emblem soon spread throughout all Europe, an inheritance from the knight Crusaders. In England we find it used upon knightly arms. Robert George Gentleman displayed it upon his shield, with the motto, “Truth, Honour and Courtesy.” In France we find it used by Count de Montamajeur, and associated with the motto, “I shall hold myself erect and not blink.” We find it upon the arms of the Duke of Modena, (1628) with the legend, “No age can destroy it.” It appears upon the shield of Swabia in 1551, in Russia in 1505, and as the crest of the city of Vienna in 1461.


Let us venture still further back into antiquity and view the double-headed eagle upon the royal arms of King Sigismund of the Roman-German empire, in 1335, upon the coinage of Malek el Salah in 1217, and upon a Moorish drachma under the, Orthogide of Kaifaacar, Edm Mahmud, of the same date. Indeed the Turkiman princes used it all through the twelfth century, but it proudly floated upon Byzantine banners as early as the year 1100 and we know not how long before.

In Germany we find the double-headed eagle used as the seal of the Count of Wurzburg in 1202; it was the coat of arms of Henricus de Rode in 1276; while Philip of Saxony bore it upon his shield in 1278. It was also the seal of the Bishop of Cologne, who no doubt adopted it from the city arms.

As the arms of towns and cities in England, this emblem appears upon the official seals of Salisbury, Perth, (Perthshire), Airedale and Lamark. In Holland and France there are also numerous instances of its use.

As the badge of royal orders we find the two-headed bird upon the emblems of the Austrian Order of the Iron Crown; in Russia upon the emblems of the Order of St. Andrew, founded by Peter the Great in 1689; in Poland upon the emblem of the Order of Military Merit, (founded May 24, 1792). As late as 1883, the King of Serbia adopted it as the emblem of the Order of the Double-Headed Eagle, commemorative of the restoration of the Serbian kingdom.

The Russian Order of St. Andrew uses the breast of the eagle upon which to display the X cross with St Andrew, crucified upon it. Each eagle head is crowned and crossed swords rest upon the crowns with a larger crown above them. The Polish Order of Military Merit has a white eagle displayed upon a Maltese cross which rests upon the breast of a double-headed eagle, each of whose heads is crowned.

But the double-headed eagle is not European in origin for its use depends upon the contact of Europe with Asia Minor, and indeed with trade or warfare with the Turks.

The Turkish name for this conspicuous emblem is HAMCA, and by this name they call it when they see it carved upon the walls of ancient castles, upon time worn coins or emblazoned upon frayed silken banners in ancient palac


Travellers in Asia Minor, indeed, are surprised by the frequency of the double-headed eagle sculptures upon the castles of the Seljukian Turks, and upon the more ancient monuments of the Hittites, whose civilization was at its height when the Hebrews were wild tribesmen upon the Arabian plains. Among the Hittite ruins in Cappadocia there are several of these notable ruins, an example being described by Perrot and Chipiez, who write:

“Sculpture, whereby the peculiarities which permit Pterian monuments to be classed in one distinct group, yields richer material to the student. Many are the characteristic details which distinguish it; but none, we venture to say, can vie with the double-headed eagle at Iasill Kaia, a type which we feel justified in ranging among those proper to Cappadocia, since it was unknown to Assyria, Egypt or Phoenicia. Its position is always a conspicuous one, – about a great sanctuary, the principal doorway of a palace, a castle wall, etc., rendering the suggestion that the Pterians used the symbol as a coat of arms plausible if not certain. It has been further urged that the city was symbolized by it, that the palace called by the Greeks Pteris (Pteron, wing) was the literal translation it bore with the Aborigines, that in a comprehensive sense it came to symbolize the whole district, the country of wings, i. e., numerous eagles, double-headed eagles with wings outstretched.”

The great city of Pteria, as Herodotus calls this unique dwelling place, was destroyed by Croesus. The ruins and walls of this city, now known as Boghaz Keui, (meaning Valley Village or Village in the Pass) have been examined with particular interest by archaeologists, but principally by Perrot and Guillaume. At the entrance of a palace these investigators found numerous rock sculptures, mostly picturing the processions of certain royal or priestly personages. Egyptian and Assyrian art motives predominate, but pure Hittite art is shown in the sculpture of the double headed eagle, upon whose displayed wings two priestly figures stand.

At Eyuk, a similar eagle with two heads facing opposite directions clutches a large hare with either foot. J. Garstang in his notable work, The Land of the Hittites, mentions there bicephalous eagles and gives two plates illustrating the rock carvings upon which they appear.


In his description of the Sculptures of Boghaz Keui, Garstang gives an analysis of the procession of priests, kings and gods shown on the rock carving alluded to above. This great bas-relief is upon the sanctuary passage way of the temple of Iasily Kaya. Concerning these images Garstang writes: “The significance of the double headed eagle is unknown. But that there was a local worship associated with the eagle is indicated by the discovery at Boghaz Keui of a sculptured head of this bird in black stone, larger than natural size, and by a newly deciphered cuneiform fragment from the same site, on which mention is made …. of the house or temple of the eagle. That the cult was general within the circuit of the Halys is suggested by the great monument which now lies prone …. near Yamoola. At Eyuk, also, there is a conspicuous though partly defaced representation of a priest of the Double-Eagle on a sphynx-jam of a palace gateway, a symbolism that we read to imply that the occupant of the palace was a chief priest of the cult….. Hence, we conclude that following the images of the national deities …. there came the images of the local cult of this part of Cappadocia, namely, the twin goddesses of the Double Eagle.”

Thus, in the ancient Kingdom of the Hittites, there was an actual temple devoted to the ceremonies of a priesthood dedicated to the cult of the two-headed eagle. While we may be sure that nothing in Scottish Rite Masonry is touched by direct Hittite influences, yet this emblem of the Thirty-second Degree must trace its history back to the ceremonies and beliefs of the Cappadocian eagle cult. We may with good reason conjecture that this strange bird painted or embroidered on banners was carried in many a strange rite and honoured in the sanctum sanctorum of the Temple itself.

But, let us go still further back into the ages of Asia Minor. Let us view the remains of Tello, the mound covering the site of the ancient Babylonian city of Lagash which flourished three thousand years B. C. Here M. de Sarzec, according to the great Assyriologist, M. Thureau Dangin, found the ruins of a temple and among other things in the rubbish he discovered two cylindrical seals. One of these has upon it the recitation of a King, who says:

“The waters of the Tigris fell low and the store of provender ran short in this my city.” He goes on to tell that this was a visitation of the gods. He, therefore, submitted his case to the divinities of the land. He dreamed, as a result, a holy dream in which there came to him a divine man whose stature towered, (as that of a mighty god in Babylonia should) from earth to heaven and whose head was crowned with the coronet of a god surmounted by the Storm Bird, “that extended its wings over Lagash and the land thereof.”

What, then, is this “storm bird,” this mysterious symbol that bedecks the brow of a god, and,what does it betoken?

Our first inquiry is to ascertain who was the patron deity of Lagash. It is easily determined that it was Ningersu, who with his wife, Bau, presided over the destinies of the city, and particularly that part known as Gersu. The divine man who rescues the world from the flood is this same Ningersu, the solar deity, who is always at odds with, yet always in full harmony with, the storm god Enlil, who was the patron deity of Nippur. Now the emblem always associated with Ningersu was an eagle, generally lion headed, called Imgig. Imgig seems always given the difficult task of clutching two beasts of a kind, one in either talon. In one instance these are lions, in another long-tailed oryxes, and still in another two serpents.

Many are the inscriptions depicting the image of Imgig looking perplexed, yet stolid, as he holds fast to the beasts beneath him. A beautiful silver vase, designed as a votive offering by Entemena, Patesi of Lagash, has etched upon it a central design of four lion-headed eagles, of which two seize a lion in each talon, a third a couple of deer and a fourth a couple of ibexes. This vase with its pictured symbols dates back to the year 2850 B.C. It rests in the Louvre today as a prized specimen of Babylonian art. Jastrow figures it in his work on Religious Beliefs in Babylonia and Assyria.

But Imgig, despite his peculiarities, might escape special notice were it not for the fact that in one or two instances he appears with two heads. It is in this wise that the bird appears in an old Babylonian cylinder seal once belonging to a priest of Ningersu. Upon this seal a priest or priestess presents a naked candidate or novitiate before an altar before which sits the goddess Bau, the Ishtar of Lagash. Behind the goddess is an inscription supported upon the two heads of a bicephalous eagle, which, of course is none other than the symbol of Ningersu and his city, Lagash. This is the oldest known representation of the double-headed eagle.


M. Heuzey, in his Discouvertes en Chaldee page 261, says: ‘It may, I think, be presumed that the double-headed eagle, and the lion-headed eagle, and also the eagle with two heads, have the same significance when figured in front view with wings spread on each side. Unlike the griffon dragon, it is a beneficent emblem representing a protecting power. We find it in the earlier Chaldean period, but in the middle and latter part it quite disappears, although it is retained in the art of the Hittites to the region north and east of Assyria.”

Ward, in his Cylinder Seals of Western Asia, tells us that from this eagle in its heraldic attitude necessitated by, its attack on the two animals, was derived the double-headed eagle, in the effort to complete the bilateral symmetry of the bird when represented with an eagle head, turned to one side like the double face of human bifrons. An examination of the lion-headed eagle facing front shows characteristics that would easily suggest two eagle heads, but this is a matter of design, rather than symbolism.

The Babylonian custom of merging gods together have some bearing on this design. The double-headed bird may represent Ningersu and Enlil, the union of the Sun god and the Storm god, or it may represent the union of Ningersu and Bau.

As an emblem of Ningersu and of Enlil (the god to whom the Tower of Babel was erected) the eagle represents the union of the two greatest gods of Mesopotamia. Indeed, in the later years of Babylonia, either of these gods might be called by the name of other, and to worship one was to pay equal tribute the other.

In later centuries, when the Hebrews had been under more or less Babylonian influence, all the characteristics of Enlil and indeed, Ningersu, were ascribed to a new and rising deity whose home was reputed to be in the land of the Kennites and upon the lofty, smoking peak of Horeb-Sinai. He manifested himself exactly as Ningersu did, by earthquakes, fiery clouds and mighty hurricanes, as for example, is described in the 29th Psalm. This god had his seat on mountain top, from whence he blessed the grazing lands and the vegetation of the Kennites. It was this God that Moses found after instruction by his father-in-law, the Midianite. Like Enlil, this god had a consort who seems to have been Yerahme’el. His other co-equals we cannot easily recognize, because the scribes have only written or allowed to remain what they desired after their theological education in Babylon during the captivity. Nevertheless, they allow many a tell-tale clue to remain, and in the original Hebrew we may still read, “And the Gods (Els or Al-him) said, ‘Behold the man is become as one of us, to know good and evil.'”

But long before Moses found Yahwe and declared him the God of Isra-El (the God who Strives), and before this god absorbed all his predecessors and forbade their recognition, a similar duad had arisen among the Hittites, whose storm god Teshup was represented two gods, and whose symbol was a double-headed eagle. Thereafter no Hittite temple or palace was complete without a conspicuous carving of the doubly potent bicephalous bird.


It was no doubt through the prevalence of this double-headed eagle among the Hittite ruins that the Turks found a reiterated motif for their own banners, emblazoning the magical Hamea, this bird of double power, upon them.

But long before the Hittite kingdom was founded, and centuries before the rise of Babylon and Assyria, and five full millenniums before the rise of the Hebrew tribes as a nation, the double-headed bird was known. Before any of the pharaohs ruled the valley of the Nile and before the pyramids had been erected, the pre-dynastic aborigines of the Nileland had carved upon trowel-like pieces of stone, a two-headed bird. These double-headed birds were prized enough to be buried with the dead, in whose tombs the archaeologist of to-day finds them as mysterious emblems of a long forgotten past. So old are these tombs containing the trowel blade with the two-headed bird upon its shoulders, that competent Egyptologists estimate an age of no less than 7,000 years before Christ.

Of interest, also is the fact that in America the double-headed eagle is found on a crest of the native priesthood. The Hida Indians today have a double-headed eagle which is displayed as a mysterious and honoured emblem, and just as this bird among the Hittites, the Babylonians and the temple worshippers of Lagash was a storm bird, so, likewise to the Hida Indians of our North West coast the double-headed eagle is their Thunderbird.

In our Christian architecture the two-headed bird has sometimes been employed, particularly as a window ornament. For example, we find it upon a church window in England, where an eagle with two heads perched upon the shoulder of Elijah symbolizes the double portion of grace with which the prophet was endowed.

Professor Albert Grundwell of Berlin, who led an archaeological expedition into central Asia, found these double-headed eagles in ancient eaves. In Vol. XXIII of The Open Court is some mention of his discoveries. He there states that to the Hindoos the bird is known as Garuda and that the particular specimen that he illustrates was found on the ceiling of a cave near Qzyl, near the city of Kutcha. Its age he cannot guess, but he intimates that the painting is very old. Like Babylonian and Hittite eagles of this class, the Garuda grasps identical animals, in this case two serpents.

The double-headed eagle, thus appears to be Asiatic and to have been originated in the lands where the greatest temples have been erected, and where religious cults have been strongest.

To recapitulate: This bird appears in Lygash under the name of Imgig, and apparently is emblematic of the union of Enlil and Ningersu; it appears among the Hittites as Teshup; it appears among the Hindoos as Garuda; it is called Hamca by the Seliuk Turks; and among the Hida Indians of America it appears as the Thunder Bird or Helinga. Among the Zuni Indians in another form it appears as a highly conventionalized design, but still as a double-headed thunder bird, the Sikyatki.

The two-headed eagle was adopted by the Turks, and by the Arabians it was known as the Roc. From the Turks it passed into use by the Crusaders, was employed as an imperial emblem by the Holy Roman Empire, adopted by the Russians, Poles, Serbians, Prussians, Austrians and Saxons. It was used as a private seal and as arms in Germany, Spain, France, Netherlands, England, and Russia.

Thus has the eagle with one body, one heart and two heads, flown afar from its natal home. We may only conjecture the varied uses to which it was put, the names by which it was called and, the things or principles it typified. Of these things where there has been reasonable assurance of certainty we have written. We are certain that the emblem is one of the oldest in the world, and from its nature we are justified in believing that it symbolizes a duality of power, a blending of two names, two functions and two dominions in one body. As Enlil or as Ningersu, it stood for a union of solar and celestial forces; as a royal crest it has stood for power and dominion, and as a religious seal it stands for truth and justice.

As a Masonic symbol this device is time honoured and appropriate. It is no less the badge of the Grand Inspector and Sublime Prince than that of the Grand Elect Knight. As the symbol of the Inspector it suggests an equal contemplation of both sides of a question-and thus, judicial balance. It is seen as the fitting emblem of an elect knight in ancient religious engravings, and to the exclusion of the cross itself, it appears upon the banners of the knight and prince who behold the apparition of the virgin and child of the rosary. And, as in ancient Mesopotamia, the double eagle is here associated with the sun symbol in the form of the Chaldean Elu, which the knight and prince wear, evidently with the same ancient meaning: “The light toward which my eyes are turned.”

Thus does the double-headed eagle stand today for that which it stood in ancient days, its two heads, facing the Ultimate Sun, reminding men and Masons that there is yet even “more light” for the pilgrim who travels East, and in whose heart is the motto,


– Source: The Builder – April 1923


Double-headed eagle in the culture of different nations

The double-headed eagle is one of the oldest symbols.  He was widely distributed in the Sumerian culture. One of the earliest images of the eagle was found during excavations of the Sumerian city of Lagash in Mesopotamia. Probably even more ancient a two-headed eagle was cut from smoky jade by the Olmec and its eyes please visitors at the best museum of Costa Rica.
Ancient Hittites also well knew the symbol. The character-attributes of their chief state god Tischuba (Teschuba), god of thunder, were a double ax (later entered  to Crete and assigned to Zeus) and a double-headed eagle.
Not far from the Turkish village Boguskoy, where once was the capital of the Hittite state, it was found the oldest two-headed eagle (13th century BC), carved in the rock.  The double-headed eagle with outstretched wings holds in paws two hares.  A modern interpretation of the image is a king stands out, looking around, defeats his enemies which hares portray, animals cowardly, but voracious.
A double-headed eagle is depicted on cylinder seals found in the excavations of the fortress Boguskoy. This symbol is also found on the walls of monumental buildings of other cities of the Hittite civilization. Hittites, like the Sumerians, used it for religious purposes.
The double-headed eagle (6th century BCE) was met in the Medes, east of the former Hittite.
The double-headed eagle was met in ancient Egypt and Assyrian monuments, where they are, according to experts, are to symbolize the connection with the Median kingdom of Assyria in the 6th and 7th centuries

The “Dictionary of international symbols and emblems” states “the Roman generals had the eagle on their Rods as a sign of supremacy over the Army”. Later the Eagle “was turned into a purely imperial sign, symbol of supreme power.”

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In ancient Greece, the sun god Helios traveled across the sky in a chariot drawn by four horses.  It rare describes, not for the public, images of Helios in his chariot drawn by two-headed eagles. There were two eagles and four heads. Perhaps it was a sign of a more ancient, secret character.

Later, the double-headed eagle was used by Persian shahs of the Sassanian dynasty (1st century AD), and then by replaced them Arab rulers who put the logo even on their coins. Ottomans minted coins with Star of David on one side and a double-headed eagle on the other. It is also images of double-headed eagles on the Arab coins of Zengid and Ortokid from the 12th to the14th century.
In the Arab world two-headed eagle also become a popular element of oriental ornament. In the Middle Ages, this symbol appeared on the standard of the Seljuk Turks, who, moreover, adorned by it  stands of the Koran. The double-headed eagle was circulated in Persia as a symbol of victory, as well as in the Golden Horde.

A number of coins of the Golden Horde survived, minted during the reign of the Khans Uzbek and Djanibek, are with a double-headed eagle. Sometimes there are allegations that the double-headed eagle was the State Emblem of the Golden Horde. However, a coat of arms usually associates with a state seal, and to date has not kept any document (label) with the seal of the Jochi Ulus, therefore the most historians don’t consider a double-headed eagle was an emblem of the Golden Horde.

There is evidence that the two-headed eagle was on the banners of the Huns (2nd-5th centuries). An Indo-European two-headed eagle first appeared in the Hurrians (3rd millennium BC, the center of civilization in the Caucasus), who honor it as a guardian of the Tree of Life.