At ground level, it is almost not visible. But from high above, the shape and design becomes unmistakable: Serpent Mound is indeed in the shape of snake. And yet, that’s just the beginning of the mystery which still surrounds this incredible marvel of human achievement.
Even the date of Serpent Mound’s construction has been shrouded in controversy and debate. As recently as 2013, radiocarbon dating revealed that the magnificent structure, which was constructed by Native Americans, dates back to 321 BCE, one year after the death of Aristotle in ancient Greece, Indian Country Today reports.
There has even been endless debate about which Native American tribe build the structure, according to Archaeology:
“In the late nineteenth century, Frederic Ward Putnam excavated two mounds near Serpent Mound, and he found artifacts and villages belonging to the Adena and the Fort Ancient cultures. Studies conducted in the 1990s dated the structure to A.D. 1120, or the Fort Ancient culture. But recently, scientists have dated charcoal pieces recovered from soil cores taken across Great Serpent Mound. The samples have yielded dates between 400 and 80 B.C., suggesting that the effigy was created by the Adena culture. The charcoal, however, was found scattered throughout the soil and may have been from old Adena fire pits that were dug up by later Fort Ancient builders.”
The serpentine shape also has important meaning, referring to the Plumed Serpent, which Ancient Origins describes as:
“A much-revered god who was believed to bring good tidings and civilization to humankind. His preeminent role in ancient times is evident from the fact that not only whole temples, but in fact whole cities were built as centers of worship for this entity. Most well-known of these may be the so-called pyramid of Kukulcan at Chichen-Itza in Mexico, which recently was included among the seven wonders of the world and is the most well-known of all Mayan pyramids.”
Even more amazing is the fact that the Serpent Mound was constructed on the edge of a meteor crater, leading some to speculate that the location is not the least bit random or accidental:
“Between 256 to 330 million years ago, a meteor streaked through the sky — it either landed in a shallow sea or disturbed some dinosaurs, astrogeologists don’t have the exact date — and made an impact in modern-day Peebles. The site of the meteor strike lives on and is known for something equally spectacular, the Serpent Mound.”
A very rare element is found at the site of meteor crashes: Iridium. Did aliens use iridium as a source of energy? That’s what the History Channel program “Ancient Aliens” explored back in 2013, with a close look at just how expertly plotted Serpent Mound is.
Serpent Mound may have a deeper significance, too. It might have been constructed to draw spirits to the area, History.com notes:
“Graves and burial mounds near the site suggest Serpent Mound’s builders may have constructed the structure for some kind of important burial or mortuary function, such as to guide spirits. But the mound itself doesn’t contain any graves or artifacts.
“Serpent Mound may have further had temporal significance—the head of the serpent aligns with the summer solstice sunset while the tail points to the winter solstice sunrise. As such, ancient peoples may have used the structure to mark time or seasons.”
Though we may never know the exact logic and purpose behind Serpent Mound, it remains one of mankind’s most incredible achievements and will no doubt continue to draw the interest of people across the world.
Here’s more on Serpent Mound from “Ancient Aliens”:
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