How were the Statues at the Easter Island placed?

How were the Statues at the Easter Island placed?

The mystery of the most remote inhabited island, Easter Island, has a new theory and it seems to be working quite well.

Easter Island is located at the extreme south-eastern boundary of the Polynesian Triangle in Oceania. This Chilean island is found in the Pacific Ocean and was named as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1995.

Rapa Nui National Park is responsible for its maintenance and protection as the presence of 887 ‘moai’ attracts thousands of tourists every year. These moai are huge statues that were sculptured by the native islanders some 500 years ago.

This island was found in 1722 by the Dutch explorers and since then we have a massive mystery on our hands but humanity has never managed to find a scientific solution for it. How were these massive statues moved as they traveled 18 kilometers up the hill without the assistance of modern-day technology, wheels, or even large animals?

Some of these hand-carved statues are as tall as 33 feet and weighs more than 80 tons while the average height and weight are around 13 feet and 14 tons, respectively. The process of carving took place at a stone quarry but an ideal spot for display was needed.

For fulfilling this requirement, they were transported to a much better place. Scientists have spent quite a lot of time on disclosing this mystery for the last six decades but nothing conclusive was found. They tried various combinations of ropes, wooden sleds, log rollers, and even trees but none of them worked.

According to the findings of Carl Lipo of California State University and Terry Hunt from the University of Hawaii, moai are designed to move in an upright position. They proved that only manpower and rope are enough to move these humungous structures if you have the patience to complete the process.

They got help from Sergio Rapu, a representative of the South Pacific Island’s Population of Indigenous Rapanui, which helped them to arrive at this conclusion. They observed that the bellies of these statues were quite fat which were ideal for tilting them in the forward direction. They proposed that the Heavy, D-shaped bases would have provided the perfect support for the ‘Roll and Rock’ motion of the moai.

They have already proven this to the world as they performed an experiment where 18 people were divided into 3 groups. They were able to move a 10 feet tall, 5-ton heavy replica of the moai merely by using some strong ropes.

One of these three groups was assigned the task of keeping the statue straight as they were positioned behind the moai while the remaining two groups moved the statue forward. The video of that event got viral at that time and the team was appreciated for their efforts.

Despite all this, there are some people who still believe that those statues actually walked their way up the hill. Suri Tuki, a Rapanui man, is one of those as he said,

The experts can say whatever they want. But we know the truth. The statues walked. In the Rapanui oral tradition, the moai were animated by mana, a spiritual force transmitted by powerful ancestors.”

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