ANCIENT DINOSAUR DEPICTIONS

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An Egyptian seal (right) depicts a large pterosaur hunting a gazelle (Giveon, R., "Scarabs From Recent Excavations in Israel," Orbis Biblicus et Orientalis 83, 1988, p. 70.) The leaf shaped tail vane of the pterosaur is unmistakable. The long reptilian head has the double crest of a Scaphognathus above it. The two wings even exhibit the unique corrugated features seen in the Solnhofen Rhamphorhynchus fossil and the claws of a pterosaur. The level of detail is similar to that for the gazelle. The seal dates from 1300-1150 B.C. and is now in the Tel Aviv University's Institute of Archaeology. Similarly, an Egyptian statue residing in a Berlin museum depicts legs with toes and claws, three wing claws; a prototagium (a portion of the wing above the arm known from pterosaur fossil impressions); and a tail vane. That pterosaur is shown hunting a falcon and also appeared to have the dental structure of a Scaphognathus. (Goertzen, John, "The Rhamphorhynchoid Pterosaur Scaphognathus crassirostris: A 'Living Fossil' Until the 17th Century," 1998 ICC Paper.)

Deep in the jungles of Cambodia are ornate temples and palaces from the Khmer civilization. Buddhist Temple Sandstone Enlarged Buddhist Temple SandstoneOne such temple, Ta Prohm abounds with stone statues and reliefs. Almost every square inch of the gray sandstone is covered with ornate, detailed carvings. These depict familiar animals like monkeys, deer, water buffalo, parrots, and lizards. However, one column contains an intricate carving of a stegosaur-like creature. But how could artisans decorating an 800 year old Buddhist temple know what a dinosaur looked like? Western science only began assembling dinosaurs skeletons in the past two centuries. (Pictures are courtesy of Don Patton.)

French Wooden Image Displays Features of a Pterosaur European reports of flying serpent living in Egypt persist through the 1600's. The Italian naturalist Prosper Alpin wrote a fascinating natural history of Egypt in the 1580's. He describes their crest, a small piece of skin on the head, their tail being "thick as a finger," their length being "as long as a palm branch," and their leaf-shaped tail. (Alpin, P., Histoire Naturelle de l'Egypte, tr. by R. de Fenoyl, 1979, pp. 407-409.) All is precisely like modern fossil reconstructions. A French wooden image, dating from the 16th century, also displays remarkable features of a pterosaur. There are two wings that clearly appear to have ribbed membranes rather than feathers. There appears to be a small head crest above and slightly in front of the eyes, the distinctive tail vane, and a hint of the twin skin flap above and behind the bony crest that is quite like the Egyptian seal.

17th Century German TractThe next drawing is from a 17th century German tract about the dangers of witches and witchcraft. Witches are accused of causing houses to spontaneously combust. The pterosaurs depicted flying in the background, with characteristic headcrests and tails, were apparently associated with witches. (Guazzo, Francesco Maria, Compendium Maleficarum, 1628, p. 23.) Many accounts from that time period describe creatures that sound suspiciously like pterodactyls. An official government report from 1793 states: "In the end of November and beginning of December last, many of the country people observed dragons appearing in the north and flying rapidly towards the east; from which they concluded, and their conjectures were right, that...boisterous weather would follow." ("Flying Dragons at Aberdeen," A Statistical Account of Scotland, 1793, p. 467.)

Sketch of Dragon SkeletonA dragon was said to live in the wetlands near Rome in December of 1691. This creature lived in a cave and supposedly terrorized the local population. A sketch of the skeleton has survived in the possession of Ingegniero Cornelio Meyer (right). The most remarkable thing about the animal is the clear head crest and the dual piece of skin from the crest. Five digits were clearly visible for each foot, of the proper length and with the first shorter and offset from the rest as is proper for the Scaphognathus. There is a hint of a wing claw on the far wing where it curves forward. The membraned wings are in front of the legs, on the vertebrae, matching the fossils. The femur is properly shown as a single bone. The tibia and fibula, the twin lower leg bones, are visible too. Although some have suggested that it could be a fossil or a faked composite, it is much too accurate to be a fabrication. The survival of the skin suggests that it is not a fossil since it includes accurate wing features, a head crest, and the ears. (Goertzen, John, "The Rhamphorhynchoid Pterosaur Scaphognathus crassirostris: A 'Living Fossil' Until the 17th Century," 1998 ICC Paper.)

Frontispiece of WorkIn 1704, Hœllischer Morpheus:Saducismus Triumphatus was published, the theme of this work was the grotesque (including subjects like the occult and black arts). No doubt because the Bible referred to Satan as "that old dragon," dragons are among the creatures often encountered in such works. Within this volume are drawings which depict flying dragons containing actual morphological features of certain species of pterosaurs. On the frontispiece of the work is a clear depiction of a long tailed pterosaur represented with two feet, wings, and a snake-like tail ending in a tail vane.

Depiction of Dragon Fighting a LionChoir stall railings and misericords (shelf-like seats for reclining while standing) in medieval European churches are often adorned with ornate carvings. A common theme is the depictions of a dragon (symbolizing Satan) fighting a lion (symbolizing Christ). To the right is one such depiction, showing a dragon that looks very much like a sauropod dinosaur.

"A fantastic mystery has developed over a set of cave paintings found in the Gorozomzi Hills, 25 miles from Salisbury. For the paintings include a brontosaurus - the 67-foot, 30-ton-like creature scientists believed became extinct millions of years before man appeared on earth. Yet the bushmen who did the paintings ruled Rhodesia from only 1500 b.c. until a couple of hundred years ago. And the experts agree that the bushmen always painted from life. Rock Painting from a Cave in Zimbabwe This belief is borne out by other Gorozomzi Hills cave paintings - accurate representations of the elephant, hippo, buck and giraffe. The mysterious pictures were found by Bevan Parkes, who owns the land the caves are on. Adding to the puzzle of the rock paintings found by Parkes is a drawing of a dancing bear. (Anonymous, "Bushmen's Paintings Baffling to Scientists," Evening News, January 1, 1970, London Express Service printed in Los Angeles Herald-Examiner, January 7, 1970.) To the left is just such a rock painting from a cave at Nachikufu near Mpika in northern Zimbabwe (formerly Rhodesia). It shows three long-necked, long-tailed creatures sketched in white. (Clark, Desmond J., The Rock Paintings of Northern Rhodesia and Nyasaland, in Summers, Rogers, Rock Art of Central Africa, 1959, pp. 28-29, 194.)

Dinosaurian Sculpture with Tail Like a Sauropod Iron Sculpture Displays a Specimen Similar to the Chasmosaurus Iron sculptures made by the Bambara peoples of Mali Africa in the 1800's display a three-horned creature with what appears to be a neck frill. The specimens shown here, part of Genesis Park's collection, exhibit dinosaurian characteristics. One shows top horns pointed forward and the neck frill extending halfway down the animal's back, much like the ceratopsian dinosaur Chasmosaurus. The long tail, squat arched body, and sprawled legs also give it the appearance of a ceratopsian dinosaur. The second, entitled "dinosaurian sculpture," by the exhibiting gallery shows a four-legged creature with a long neck and tail like a sauropod dinosaur. The neck has a slight widening and a ridged frill that makes it a fascinating depiction.

Bronze Artifact Showing a Dogon Tribesman Riding a Reptilian Creature Another African tribe from the Mali region is known for producing dinosaurian objects in the mid-1800's . This is the same timeframe when Sir Richard Owen coined the term dinosaur in England. The bronze artifact to the left shows a Dogon tribesman riding a long-necked, long-tailed reptilian creature. The oddly bird-like head with strong jawline is reminiscent of the "duck bill" on certain Ornithopod dinosaurs. The diamond-shaped pattern on the skin matches fossilized skin impressions discovered on a hadrosaur in southern Utah.

Roman Sword Depicting a Dinosaur Roman Style Artifacts In 1924 some Roman style lead artifacts were excavated near Tucson, AZ (see right). Described on p. 331 of David Hatcher's book The Lost Cities of North & Central America is the unique carvings on these implements, particularly a clear dinosaur depiction on a sword. The Arizona Historical Society still has the sword.

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To the left are pictured Inca Ceremonial Burial Stones that are likely from the Nazca culture. In 1571 the Spanish conquistadors brought back stories that there were stones with strange creatures carved on them found in this region of Peru. Today, over 1100 such stones were found by Dr. Javier Cabrera. Long-necked creatures displayed on pottery in the museum of Lima. Long-necked creatures displayed on pottery in the museum of Lima. Long-necked creatures displayed on pottery in the museum of Lima. In the early 1930's, his father found many of these ceremonial burial stones in Ica's numerous Peruvian tombs and noted that dinosaur-like creatures were represented on some of them. Retired from the University of Lima, Dr. Cabrera had focused upon validating these finds within the scientific community. His credibility was strengthened by long-necked creatures displayed on pottery in the museum of Lima and beautiful tapestries from the Nazca tombs (ca 700 AD) with a repeating pattern that looks like dinosaurs. Indeed, the depictions on some of the Ica Stones show the sauropod dinosaurs with a crest of spines much like that discovered by Paleontologist Stephen Czerkas.
Tapestries from the Nazca tombs (ca 700 AD) with a repeating pattern that looks like dinosaurs. Tapestries from the Nazca tombs (ca 700 AD) with a repeating pattern that looks like dinosaurs.
"Recent discovery of fossilized sauropod (diplodocid) skin impressions reveals a significantly different appearance for these dinosaurs. The fossilized skin demonstrates that a median row of spines was present... Some are quite narrow, and others are broader and more conical." (Geology, "New Look for Sauropod Dinosaurs," December, 1992, p. 1,068.)" Also, of interest is the fact that the skin of many of the carved dinosaurs has rounded bump-like depictions. Some scientists had pointed to this as evidence that these stones were not scientifically accurate. However, more recent discoveries of fossilized dinosaur skin and embryos have silenced these same critics. For example, Luis Chiappe and colleagues discussed certain sauropod dinosaur embryos found in South America: "The general skin pattern consists of round, non-overlapping, tubercle-like scales...A rosette pattern of scales is present in PVPH-130" (Chiappe, et al., 1998, p. 259). Note the skin depiction above to the left.

Pottery in the museum of Lima displaying long-necked creatures. Pottery in the museum of Lima displaying long-necked creatures. Not far from the South American Nazca sites are the Moche Indian archaeological locations. These Moche tribes inhabited northern Peru about 100-800AD. Among the artifacts currently in the Lima museum are the Mocha stirrup-spout pots and vases. Their main artistic medium was the red & white ceramic pots, which depict with singular realism medical acts, combative events, musical instruments, plants and animals. In the Larco Herrera Museum in Peru there are vases that clearly depict dinosaurs with three and sometimes four toes. Some of these same types of dinosaurs are shown on the Ica stones, including the dermal frills. The pictures here were taken by Dr. Dennis Swift.





Clay Figurines of Dinosaurs Dating Between 800 BC & 200 AD Clay Figurines of Dinosaurs Dating Between 800 BC & 200 AD Clay Figurines of Dinosaurs Dating Between 800 BC & 200 AD In 1945 archeologist Waldemar Julsrud discovered clay figurines buried at the foot of El Toro Mountain on the outskirts of Acambaro, Mexico. Eventually over 33,000 ceramic figurines were found in the area and identified with the Pre-classical Chupicuaro Culture (800 BC to 200 AD). The authenticity of Julsrud's find has been challenged because the huge collection included dinosaurs. In 1954 the Mexican government sent a team of archeologists to investigate. In 1955 Charles Hapgood, professor of Anthropology at UNH, conducted an elaborate investigation including extensive radiometric dating and thermoluminescent testing by the University of Pennsylvania. In 1990 an investigation was conducted by Neal Steedy, an archeologist who works with the Mexican government. Thus Julsrud's work has survived numerous tests and the Mexican government has even imprisoned two men for selling these artifacts on the black market. Moreover, the dinosaurs are modeled in very agile, active poses, fitting well with the latest scientific evidence and lending credence to the artists having actually observed these creatures. Like the Ica Stones, some sauropod's are depicted with a distinctive spinal frill. There was extinct ice-age horse remains, the skeleton of a woolly mammoth, and a number of ancient human skulls found at the same location as the ceramic artifacts, validating the antiquity of the site (Hapgood, Charles, 2000, p.82). Dr. Ivan T. Sanderson was amazed in 1955 to find that there was an accurate representation of a Brachiosaurus, almost totally unknown to the general public at that time. Sanderson wrote, "This figurine is a very fine, jet-black, polished-looking ware. It is about a foot tall. The point is it is an absolutely perfect representation of Brachiosaurus, known only from East Africa and North America. There are a number of outlines of the skeletons in the standard literature but only one fleshed out reconstruction that I have ever seen. This is exactly like it." Further evidence of the authenticity of Julsrud’s finds is the near-perfect Iguanodon dinosaur figurine. This was one of the first dinosaur skeletons discovered. The early concept of its appearance was almost comical in the mid 1800's. By the turn of the century it had improved considerably but fell far short of what we now know. The Acambaro figurine exhibits knowledge we have gained only in the last few years. No hoaxer could have made this model in the 1940's.

Artifact from Tiwanaku Vase depicting dueling dinosaursTo the right is an artifact from Tiwanaku, an important Pre-Columbian archaeological site in Bolivia. Tiwanaku is recognized by Andean scholars as one of the most important precursors to the Inca Empire. The sculptor depicted a dinosaur-like creature at least 800 years before European scientists discovered dinosaurs. A vase depicting dueling dinosaurs has also been discovered at this site. It is believed to date from 600 -1000 A.D. and closely resembles the Nazca dinosaurian depictions.

Ashanti Gold Figurine Resembling a Dinosaur"In the 1960's, a leading jewel designer called Emanuel Staub was commissioned by the University of Pennsylvania...to produce replicas of a series of small gold weights obtained in Ghana. ...So well crafted were they that the animals that they depicted could be instantly identified by zoologists--all but one, that is, which could not be satisfactorily reconciled with any known animal, until Staub saw it." (Shuker, Dr. Karl P.N., In Search of Prehistoric Survivors, 1995, p. 20.) Originally photographed resting on its hind legs (as if bipedal), this enigmatic Ashanti gold figurine was difficult to identify. Once properly positioned, Staub noted that the mysterious artifact bears a striking resemblance to a dinosaur. Perhaps this figurine was an attempt to model the sauropod Mokele-mbembe creature that is said to inhabit remote regions of equatorial Africa still today.

At a museum in Manitou Springs, Colorado, there is an unusual carved artifact. It is an Indian prayer stick (see below left), roughly a foot long, with a crested head, eyes on both sides, and beaked mouth. The beautiful artistic work stands out as strikingly like a pterodactyl! This portrayal from a Saxon shield mount reveals a pterosaur-like creature at rest. The wings are folded back along its scale-like sides, a long beak full of teeth, crest, and an unmistakable tail vane all make the depiction compelling. The wings are folded back along its scale-like sides, a long beak full of teeth, crest, and an unmistakable tail vane all make the depiction compelling.The flying reptile widfloga (or far-ranging flyer) was known to the Saxons and this shield-boss came from the Sutton Hoo burial site. It is displayed at the British Museum (click to enlarge).

Indian Prayer Stick Saxon Shield - Click to Enlarge
Some of the beautiful French chateaus built at the close of the Middle Ages and early 1500's have dramatic dragon illustrations carved into their walls, ceilings, and furniture. These include Château de Chambord, Château de Blois, and Château Azay-le-Rideau. Note the similarities in the dinosaurian-like dragons and their resemblance to dinosaurs like Plateosaurus and Thecodontosaurus. The Château Azay-le-Rideau also displays a fascinating tapestry depicting what looks like a pterosaur fighting a (click to enlarge). A tapestry at Château de Blois portrays a dragon (and its baby) with gnarly horns on its head that are reminiscent of the dinosaur Dracorex hogwartsia (click to enlarge).
Tapestry at the Château Azay-le-Rideau Depicting a Pterosaur Fighting a Lion - Click to Enlarge Tapestry at the Château de Blois Portraying a Dragon and Its Baby with Gnarly Horns - Click to Enlarge
Dragon Illustrations from French Chateaus Dragon Illustrations from French Chateaus Dragon Illustrations from French Chateaus
Dragon Illustrations from French Chateaus Dragon Illustrations from French Chateaus
Pterosaur-like Depiction from the Middle Ages Another pterosaur-like depiction from the Middle Ages is shown in Athanasius Kircher's 1678 book Mundus Subterraneus. This drawing is so compelling that Peter Wellnhofer (The Illustrated Encyclopedia of Pterosaurs, 1991, p. 20.) suggests it might have been based on fossil finds. But it is more likely based on even more ancient reports. Rhamphorynchoid Pterosaur In Kircher's book, the character Winkelried was supposed to have killed the dragon in Switzerland during the earliest days of his particular settlement. The most obvious anatomical discrepancy with pterosaurs (the front feet) was a more recent addition to dragon depictions. G. E. Smith's 1919 book The Evolution of the Dragon explains that ancient notions only included a snake-like body, leathery wings like a bat, and two legs. The front legs were not added till the 16th century. Kircher also includes a picture of a dragon (on left) that resembles the rhamphorynchoid pterosaurs.

Painting of Jason Charming the Dragon by Salvator Rosa According to the Greek mythology a heroic figure named Jason, son of Aeson, captured a golden fleece that was guarded by a hissing dragon. This legend of Jason charming the Dragon is memorialized in a beautiful painting (see left) by the multi-talented European artist Salvator Rosa (1615-1673). It is remarkable in its likeness to a pterosaurian. From where did Rosa get this inspiration?

Tomb of Richard Bell Engravings from Tomb of Richard Bell In 1496 the Bishop of Carlisle, Richard Bell, was buried in Carlisle Cathedral in the U.K. The tomb is inlaid with brass, with various animals engraved upon it (see right). Although worn by the countless feet that walked over it since the Middle Ages, a particular depiction is unmistakable in its similarity to a dinosaur. Amongst the birds, dog, eel, etc. this clear representation of two long-necked creatures should be considered evidence that man and dinosaurs co-existed.

One would think that such hard evidence would be highly problematic for evolutionary theory. Indeed Dr. Philip Kitcher, in his anti-creationist book Abusing Science, claims that solid evidence that dinosaurs and man co-existed would "shake the foundations of evolutionary theory." (1998, p. 121) Likewise, Strahler insists that "it is conceivable that a scientist will some day discover human bones among dinosaur bones in such a relationship that it is judged highly likely that humans and dinosaurs lived at the same time. Such a finding would deal a crushing blow to the widely favored hypothesis of a unique evolutionary sequence. In Popper language, the hypothesis of evolution would be falsified." (Strahler, Arthur N., Science and Earth History: The Evolution /Creation Controversy, 1999, p. 17.) Unfortunately the history of Darwinian theories suggests that all such evidence would quickly be assimilated into evolution theory. But one can at least hope that as more evidence comes to light, the credibility of the evolutionary story-tellers will at last wear thin!
http://www.genesispark.org/genpark/ancient/ancient.htm


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