The crystal skulls

  1. The crystal skulls

    Not related to the new movie coming out which i know nothing about but i saw this great show on discovery last night talking about the maya crystal skulls and how they claim arent manmade

    Crystal skull - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The crystal skulls are a number of human skull models fashioned from blocks of clear or milky quartz crystal rock, claimed to be pre-Columbian Mesoamerican artifacts by their alleged finders. Contemporary mainstream scientific opinion is that the skulls are instead of 19th century European manufacture. None of the specimens made available for scientific study have been authenticated as pre-Columbian in origin.[1]

    The skulls are often claimed to exhibit paranormal phenomena by some members of the New Age movement, and have often been portrayed as such in fiction, most notably in the Indiana Jones franchise, including the film Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull, but also in the season 3 Stargate SG-1 episode "Crystal Skull," and perhaps less well known in Her Interactive's casual game "Nancy Drew: Legend of the Crystal Skull".

    Crystal skull collections

    A distinction has been made by some modern researchers between the smaller bead-sized crystal skulls, which first appear in the mid-19th century, and the larger (approximately life-sized) skulls that appear toward the end of that century. The smaller crystal skulls may be actual Mesoamerican beads that have been carved in modern times into a skull shape; they may even represent a genuine Mexican Catholic cultural practice, as at least one example has been found attached to the base of a crucifix (reflecting a Christian symbolism of Golgotha, the "place of [the] skull"). However, it is the larger crystal skulls that have attracted nearly all the popular attention in recent times, and researchers believe these to have been manufactured as forgeries in Europe.

    Trade in fake pre-Columbian artifacts developed during the late 19th century to the extent that in 1886 Smithsonian archaeologist William Henry Holmes wrote an article called "'The Trade in Spurious Mexican Antiquities"' for Science.[2] Although museums acquired skulls earlier, it was Eugène Boban, an antiquities dealer who opened his shop in Paris in 1870, who is most associated with 19th-century museum collections of crystal skulls. Most of Boban's collection, including three crystal skulls, was sold to the ethnographer Alphonse Pinart, who donated the collection to the Trocadéro Museum, which later became the Musée de l'Homme.

    Research into crystal skull origins

    Many crystal skulls are claimed to be pre-Columbian, usually attributed to the Aztec or Maya civilizations. Mesoamerican art has numerous representations of skulls, but these do not share similar stylistic elements with the crystal skulls, and none of the skulls in museum collections come from documented excavations.[3] Research carried out on several crystal skulls at the British Museum in 1996 and again in 2004 has shown that the indented lines marking the teeth (for these skulls had no separate jawbone, unlike the Mitchell-Hedges skull) were carved using jeweler's equipment (rotary tools) developed in the 19th century, making a supposed pre-Columbian origin even more dubious. The type of (rather poor quality) crystal is Brazilian, and unknown within the Aztec or Maya territories. The study concluded that the skulls were crafted in the 19th century in Germany.

    It has been established that both the British Museum and Paris' Musée de l'Homme[4] crystal skulls were originally sold by the French antiquities dealer Eugène Boban, who was operating in Mexico City between 1860 and 1880.[5] The British Museum crystal skull transited through New York's Tiffany's, whilst the Musée de l'Homme's crystal skull was donated by Alphonse Pinart, an ethnographer who had bought it from Boban.

    An investigation carried out by the Smithsonian Institution in 1992 on a crystal skull provided by an anonymous source who claimed to have purchased it in Mexico City in 1960 and that it was of Aztec origin concluded that it, too, was made in recent years. According to the Smithsonian, Boban acquired the crystal skulls he sold from sources in Germany; findings that are in keeping with those of the British Museum.[6]

    Individual skulls

    Mitchell-Hedges skull

    Perhaps the most famous and enigmatic skull was allegedly discovered in 1926 by Anna Le Guillon Mitchell-Hedges, adopted daughter of British adventurer and popularist author F.A. Mitchell-Hedges.

    Anna Hedges claimed that she found the skull buried under a collapsed altar inside a temple in Lubaantun, in British Honduras, now Belize.[7] As far as can be ascertained, F.A. Mitchell-Hedges himself made no mention of the alleged discovery in any of his writings on Lubaantun. Also, others present at the time of the excavation have not been documented as noting either the skull's discovery or Anna's presence at the dig.[8]

    In a 1970 letter, Anna also stated that she was "told by the few remaining Maya, and was used by the high priest to will death".[9] The artifact is sometimes referred to as "The Skull of Doom", either because of its seemingly inexplicable properties and the supposed ill-luck of those who have handled it, or perhaps a play on 'Skull of Dunn' (Dunn being an associate of Mitchell-Hedges). Anna Mitchell-Hedges toured with the skull from 1967 and continued to give interviews about the artifact until her death in 2007.

    The skull is made from a block of clear quartz about the size of a small human cranium, measuring some 5 inches (13 cm) high, 7 inches (18 cm) long and 5 inches wide. The lower jaw is detached. In the early 1970s it came under the temporary care of freelance art restorer Frank Dorland, who claimed upon inspecting it that it had been "carved" with total disregard to the natural crystal axes without the use of metal tools. Dorland reported being unable to find any tell-tale scratch marks, except for traces of mechanical grinding on the teeth, and speculated it was first chiseled into rough form, probably using diamonds, and the finer shaping, grinding and polishing achieved through the use of sand over a period of 150 to 300 years. Although various claims have been made over the years regarding the skull's physical properties, such as an allegedly constant temperature of 70°F (21°C), Dorland reported that there was no difference in properties between it and other natural quartz crystals.[10]

    While in Dorland's care the skull came to the attention of writer Richard Garvin, at the time working at an advertising agency where he supervised Hewlett-Packard's advertising account. Garvin made arrangements for the skull to be examined at HP's crystal labs at Santa Clara, where it was subjected to several tests. The labs determined only that it was not a composite (as Dorland had supposed), but was fashioned from a single crystal of quartz.[11] The lab test also established that the lower jaw had been fashioned from the same left-handed growing crystal as the rest of the skull.[12] No investigation was made by HP as to its method of manufacture or dating.[13]

    As well as the traces of mechanical grinding on the teeth noted by Dorland,[14] Mayanist archaeologist Norman Hammond reported that the holes (presumed to be intended for support pegs) showed signs of being made by drilling with metal.[15] Anna Mitchell-Hedges refused subsequent requests to submit the skull to further scientific testing.[16]

    F. A. Mitchell-Hedges mentioned the skull only briefly in the first edition of his autobiography, Danger My Ally (1954), without specifying where or by whom it was found.[17] He merely claimed that "it is at least 3,600 years old and according to legend was used by the High Priest of the Maya when performing esoteric rites. It is said that when he willed death with the help of the skull, death invariably followed".[18] All subsequent editions of Danger My Ally omitted mention of the skull entirely.[19]
    Eugène Boban, main French dealer in pre-Columbian artefacts during the second half of the 19th century and probable source of many famous skulls
    Eugène Boban, main French dealer in pre-Columbian artefacts during the second half of the 19th century and probable source of many famous skulls

    The earliest published reference to the skull is the July 1936 issue of the British anthropological journal Man, where it is described as in the possession of Mr. Sydney Burney, a London art dealer said to have owned it since 1933.[20] No mention was made of Mitchell-Hedges. There is documentary evidence that Mitchell-Hedges bought it from Burney in 1944.[21] The skull was in the custody of Anna Mitchell-Hedges, the adopted daughter of Frederick. She steadfastly refused to let it be examined by experts (making very doubtful that claim that it was reported on by R. Stansmore Nutting in 1962). Somewhere between 1988-1990 Anna Mitchell-Hedges toured with the skull. In her last eight years Anna Mitchell-Hedges lived in Chicago with Bill Homann. He took care of her until she died on 11th of April, 2007. Since that time the Mitchell-Hedges Skull has been in the custody of Bill Homann.

    British Museum skull

    The crystal skull of the British Museum first appeared in 1881, in the shop of the Paris antiquarian, Eugène Boban. Its origin was not stated in his catalog of the time. He is said to have tried to sell it to Mexico's national museum as an Aztec artifact, but was unsuccessful. Boban later moved his business to New York City, where the skull was sold at auction, and bought by Tiffany and Co., who later sold it at cost to the British Museum in 1897.[22] This skull is very similar to the Mitchell-Hedges skull, although it is less detailed and does not have a movable lower jaw.[23]

    The British Museum catalogs the skull's provenance as "probably European, 19th century AD"[24] and describes it as "not an authentic pre-Columbian artifact".[25]

    Paris skull

    The largest of Eugène Boban's three skulls (sometimes called the Paris Skull), about 10cm (3.9in) high, has a hole drilled vertically through its center. It is part of a collection held at the Musée du Quai Branly, and was subjected to scientific tests carried out in 2007–08 by France's national Centre de recherche et de restauration des musées de France (Centre for Research and Restoration of the Museums in France, or C2RMF). After a series of analyses carried out over three months, C2RMF engineers concluded that it was "certainly not pre-Columbian, it shows traces of polishing and abrasion by modern tools."[26] Particle accelerator tests also revealed occluded traces of water that were dated to the 19th century, and the Quai Branly released a statement that the tests "seem to indicate that it was made late in the 19th century."[27]

    Crystal skulls and the paranormal

    People who believe in the psychic power of crystal skulls say that the skulls are a center of radiant psychic energy and have the power to increase happiness and improve people's lives just by being held, handled and spoken with; others have suggested that crystal skulls can be used like crystal balls, to aid divination.[citation needed]

    Claims of the healing and supernatural powers of crystal skulls have no support in the mainstream scientific community. The scientific community at large has found no evidence of any unusual phenomena associated with the skulls nor any reason for further investigation, other than the confirmation of their provenance and method of manufacture.


    Quote Originally Posted by RenegadeRows View Post
    I read a book on them. Interesting, but I don't beleive in it. I mean, how many are there? 4? We have a long way to go until 12. A nice mystery, but I don't buy into the whole 'information containing, made by alien' scenarios.
    if you saw the tv show on discovery or some channel like that, it was very informatative and tons of it makes sense if your creative and are welcome to the idea that earth was inhabited by people from another planet or something weird, or that the few people here esp the older ones aka middleeast, maya etc where visited by something or someone....

    how there might be pyrimids on mars or moon is another great mystery, and im sure our little govt wouldnt share anything if they really did find some freaky stuff out..

    one interesting tidbit is during the movie the walk on the moon or was it mars i dont recall, the video recording shows a skull like design in the ground, soo its odd for sure and the video says no one is sure or knows if they skull was recovered and brought back etc..

    [nomedia=""]YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.[/nomedia]
    [nomedia=""]YouTube - Broadcast Yourself.[/nomedia]

  2. many of these have been proven as created in the modern age (ie. mitchell-hedges) however the technology for some of the others are still big mysteries
    Mr. Supps Board Rep

  3. I read a book on them. Interesting, but I don't beleive in it. I mean, how many are there? 4? We have a long way to go until 12. A nice mystery, but I don't buy into the whole 'information containing, made by alien' scenarios.

  4. Quote Originally Posted by RenegadeRows View Post
    I read a book on them. Interesting, but I don't beleive in it. I mean, how many are there? 4? We have a long way to go until 12. A nice mystery, but I don't buy into the whole 'information containing, made by alien' scenarios.

    yea well the stuff i love most about histroy and all this stuff, is howmuch and howmany cities are buried underground and NO DUH we havent found some of them yet.... to me thats just amazing

    like egypt, wasnt most of it buried? near the pryimids and all that stuff... just like OLD indian villages and viking things most of them are buried and it really brings some interesting points, nothing in the past couple tousand years appears to be buried.. maybe im wrong, but it really says something happened long ago and who knows whatt

    and the maya hills/moutains/covered up temples and cities they arent allowed to be looked into and no digging alllowed i found that interesting but it also makes sense i guess, their life revoles around the stories and religions they growup on if people find stuff that confronts it or belittles it that will totally messsup their lifestyle etc

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