The Easter Island “Moai” Have Bodies…Underground
January 7, 2012 6 Comments
Believed to be carved around 1250 and 1500, the moai are monolithic human figures carved from rock. Located on Easter Island, a Polynesian island in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, the origin of these figures is still questioned to this day., and easily made out strange place collection. It’s believed that the moai were either carved by a distinguished class of professional carvers who were comparable in status to high-ranking members of other Polynesian craft guilds, or, alternatively, by members of each clan from territories around the island.
Recently it’s been discovered that some of these monolithic heads actually have bodies, underground. Some of the figures on the island do have bodies, but were above ground when they were discovered. Some figures just appeared as heads and that’s all they were believed to be until recently. The bodies have been unearthed and the petroglyphs (rock markings) have been preserved below the soil, where they have been protected from erosion. The bodies don’t generally include legs but do have arms and hands that are visible in the picture below.
The Eeaster Island Statue Project (EISP) is the group responsible for uncovering the moai bodies. EISP is the longest collaborative and evolving artifact inventory ever conducted within the context of the Easter Island archaeological survey. Their basic purpose is to shed light on the complexities of prehistory, and to integrate the moai into the unfolding time line of Rapa Nui prehistory. They aim to locate, describe, and understand the original context and use of all statues.
These findings are fascinating. I find the study of these statues very intriguing because no one really knows the real reason why they were carved. There are many statues just like the moai on Easter Island, who’s purposes are still unknown. Who’s to say what any of them were made for? It could have been anything…
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