Lost civilizations have always kept archaeologists, historians, and the general public in awe. Throughout history, adventurous explorers have scanned above and beyond, through mountains and seas, to find ancient societies that strived thousands of years ago and were eventually lost in time.
Ranging from the pyramids of Egypt to the city of Atlantis, rediscoveries of lost cities continue to fascinate us. They give us significant insights into the rich tapestry of human history.
Most people in today’s generation think that the age of exploration is over. Since we have seen it all and travelled the world, they believe there is nothing left to explore. Well, modern explorers are working day and night to prove that wrong. Even today, explorers are rediscovering lost sites with intriguing facts that make us question the rise and fall of different civilizations and unveil secrets about our own history.
So, in this article, we will be rediscovering lost civilizations with modern explorers to have a glance at their enigmatic remnants of existence.
Why Do We Study Lost Civilizations?
As mentioned earlier, many people think the age of exploration is over. However, in this digital age, modern explorers, scanning the seas, mountains, and space, have been going on adventures to push the boundaries of human knowledge and share them with the public.
Many modern-day explorers are utilizing social media platforms like Instagram and YouTube to share the latest information and educate the audience concerning new discoveries. The fascinating part is that exploration in this age goes beyond our planet. Hence, exploration can never come to an end.
Studying rediscoveries of lost cities has a meaning of its own. The most significant reason to study lost civilizations is to unveil mysteries that can give modern-day thinkers great insight regarding human existence.
By examining and analyzing remnants of societies that persisted thousands of years ago, modern-day archaeologists and historians can make comparisons and build a deeper connection between the past and the present.
The knowledge concerning the technological and societal advancements that existed years ago can help us progress in the present times by enriching our thought processes. Moreover, we get to reflect on the achievements of our ancestors.
Rediscovering Lost Civilizations
In this section, let us discuss some of the rediscoveries of lost societies to enrich ourselves with some wonderful facts.
The Lost City Of Petra
The city of Petra lies in the rugged canyons of southern Jordan. In spite of being an important place in antiquity, Petra was completely lost to the Western world after the 14th century AD.
Petra was a city of Arabian nomads who had sharp survival skills and great trading tactics. Today, it stands as a testament to the Nabataean civilization. Back then, it became a successful junction on the ancient Silk Road and made itself a main stopping point for foreign traders. Petra is still filled with mesmerizing royal tombs, monuments, and treasury buildings carved into pink sandstone cliffs.
Petra was only rediscovered around the early 19th century. Swiss explorer Johann Ludwig Burckhardt resurrected Petra by tricking his way into the site, pretending to be an Arab from India. Ever since, Petra has reignited its spark of ancient civilization and kept people in awe and fascination with its exquisite history.
City Of Atlantis
The city of Atlantis has been sparking a fascination with different legends and mythologies for centuries now. The story of Atlantis dates back to the age of the ancient Greek philosopher Plato. He proposed Atlantis as a technologically advanced and powerful civilization situated beyond the Pillars of Hercules.
According to Plato, Atlantis ceased to exist because God punished the Atlanteans for being arrogant. Despite being a prosperous society, God caused Atlantis to sink into the sea and finish its civilization forever. Well, there are two groups of people with different schools of thought regarding this story.
One group thinks it is a myth and a complete utopia created by Plato. The other group pursues Atlantis to be a real place that got lost in time. However, due to a lack of concrete evidence, there is still no proper answer to Atlantis being a real place.
Yet, many modern-day explorers and geologists believe that Atlantis lies somewhere in the Atlantic Ocean. It apparently ceased to exist because the place got submerged due to natural calamities such as tsunamis. After explorers have scanned the ocean floor and found some remnants of an ancient society, they are holding onto the possibility of Atlantis being a real place.
The Mayan civilization is one of the most intriguing lost civilizations located in the Mesoamerican region, now known as Mexico. It still confuses and puzzles historians and archaeologists. Although geographically distant from ancient Egypt, the Mayan civilization is said to have great similarities with the former civilization.
One of the most fascinating contributions of the Mayan civilization was the development of an advanced writing system known as hieroglyphics. Moreover, the Mayans had talented mathematicians and astronomers. Filled with impressive temples, pyramids, and beautiful cities, the Mayan civilization had an advanced idea of engineering even during 2000 BCE.
However, despite being an advanced society, the decline of the Mayan civilization came inevitably. The reason as to why they ceased to exist is still unknown. Most historians add that it could have been warfare or environmental factors. However, the exact reason is still unknown. The only message that Mayan civilization left behind is that even the most advanced societies can face an unfortunate fate.
Angkor Wat was built by the then-ruler of the Hindu Khmer dynasty, King Suryavarman II, in the 12th century. It is now the world’s largest temple complex, located in Cambodia. It covers around 1,626,000 square meters and is dedicated to the Hindu god Vishnu. During the 12th century, it stood as a testament to the strength of the Kmer Empire.
However, after the 16th century, people started neglecting the complex. In the 19th century, French explorer Henri Mouhot rediscovered the site and made the world aware of the majesty of Khmer civilization. He wrote extensive descriptions concerning the temple and stated it to be greater than any architectural legacy of the Greeks and the Romans.
Ever since, Angkor Wat has attracted visitors from all around the world. Even today, you can wander around the temple complex and feel the sunrise over the main temple.
Learning about lost civilizations brings great insight into the skills and talents of our ancestors. The way they strived and adapted to life helps us build a better future by reflecting on their mistakes as well as their accomplishments.