Watching this program on The Learning Channel, this scientist
narrates the ability of ancient architects building structures which
mimic on the ground the various constellations in the sky:

The Egyptian Pyramids :: Orion
The Great Spider at Nazca :: Orion
Angkor Wat :: Draco

However, these structures…all built at different times in Earth’s
history… have one thing in common.

Due to the precession of Equinoxes, the structures were exactly
aligned to their respective constellations approximately 10,500
years BC.

What is significant about this date?
What was Earth like then?

Granted, most of my education about this era comes from James Michener’s The Source, but people were pretty much still hunting and gathering with possibly some small-scale seed-planting, and mostly still living in caves but with pockets of innovation in building huts, etc. Anthropologists, please correct me, I don’t think there was any large-scale building going on at the time.

I watched that show, too, and was wondering how this coincidence could be possible. Perhaps people drew constellations on cave walls and stories were handed down? . . . seems a little farfetched.

The first question to be asked, of course, is “Who made the claim?” and the second is “Is he noted as a crank in other areas?”

I am not prepared to deny the claim (yet). However, I have found an awful lot of this stuff that makes it onto the “fact based” cable channels would not stand up to review in an introductory course in college, much less to a review by people who actually knew what they were talking about.

I think that the general theory is that 10,500 BC was the end of an ice age, which leads to flooding and the end of Atlantis.

These monuments point to the “first time”. In other words, although not built in 10,500 (with the possible exception of the Sphinx), they relate back to the time when Atlantis ruled the world (or when Atlantean refugees educated the world).

Not that I’m saying it’s true, but you did ask.

As to who made the claim, Graham Hancock would be one (or possible the one).

Sounds very much like a repeat of Hancock’s series for Channel 4 in the UK. Hancock isn’t a scientist - he’s a journalist, with a background in reporting in Africa. (To be fair, as you can read on his site, he only claims to be “reporting” various claims in this journalistic role; frankly, I regard this as weaseling about his responsibilty to the truth.)

Basically nothing beyond what he’s claiming. The Giza alignment is effectively arbitrary. It derives from Robert Bauval’s claims about the three pyramids there reproducing the Belt of Orion (see his The Orion Mystery). Bauval then extrapolates to argue that the Nile is the Milky Way and that the alignment of this relative to north fixes the date. But, even if you buy the pyramids as the Belt aspect, the orientation of the Nile is pretty much an unalterable geographical fact. The Nile just is. The ancient Egyptians had to accept it; they couldn’t make some active choice that its orientation encoded any particular date.
The Angkor Wat match with Draco was taken to bits by a BBC Horizon documentary on the subject. All the leading authorities on the site deny that dragons were any part of the culture. And Hancock was selecting a small subset of the temples involved in order to create his pattern.

For an entertaining muck-raking expose of Hancock etc., see Giza: The Truth by Ian Lawton and Chris Ogilvie-Herald (Virgin, 1999). Both are active on the Web, so a search will throw up related material.

And to follow-up on tomndebb’s point, the real issue is that Hancock’s dubious on these areas.

I haven’t looked into this (and don’t want to), but it seems pretty stupid on the face of it.

“Mimicking Orion”? You mean, having four sides? Um… duh? Practically every house and temple and whatnot would fit that criteria.

“Mimicking Orion’s belt”? You mean, having three objects in a straight line? Uh… that’s not a big deal either. Any straight street with three buildings would match that.

The belt isn’t a straight line, and neither are the pyramids. Having said that, I seem to remember that the offset is not exactly the same (despite diagrams in the books that match the apexes to the stars exactly). I think that there was also mention of the pyramids mimicing the brightness of the stars, although that might not be the case.

As to the mimicing of Orion, in the Egyptian case I think they took the three Giza pyramids and another two that equated (in the rough sketch in the book) to the top right and bottom left stars. I remember wondering if there was any justification for using only those two pyramids and none of the others dotted around Eygpt.

The Ankor Wat match didn’t even look right to me. I can’t remember the Nasca spider.

Although the theories about the Pyramids, the Nazca lines and Angkor Wat were indeed developed by Hancock and Bauval, the idea that there was something significant about 10,500 BCE is older, having been derived from one of the ‘prophecies’ of Edgar Cayce. This is hardly reassuring. There is a Staff Report about other aspects of Cayce’s career.

What Hancock and co. are suggesting is that there is a very vague resemblance between some modern constellations and certain ancient monuments (built by societies who used different constellations or none at all), and that these monuments roughly correspond to the position of those constellations on an arbitarily chosen day during a year picked by someone widely considered to have been a crank. Unsurprisingly, Hancock and Bauval now tend to keep quiet about the extent to which their theory was inspired by Cayce.

I would second bonzer’s recommendation of Lawton and Ogilvie-Herald. You should also take a look at some of the articles on the following site.


Graham Hancock is full of crap. He has been spewing this crud for years and only has the most tenuous anecdotal evidence to support his claims. He says that there was an advanced culture (Atlantis?) that spread around the world and at roughly 10,500 BCE they ‘marked’ that date. Never mind that he claims Yonaguni is one of these sites and geologists point out that it (Yonaguni) is the result of natural processes.

IMO, Hancock is the antithesis of archaeology and of the scientific method. I will continue to bash him, often and repeatedly, until he brings forth one piece of physical evidence to support ( or gove the semblance of support) to his unique position.

adam yax - offical Graham Hancock basher of SDMB.