Aussie Researchers Discover Burial Mounds Thousands Of Years Older Than Pyramids
The Great Pyramids of Giza are rightly heralded as a miraculous and bewildering achievement of human engineering. With the biggest of the lot estimated to have been completed around 2560 BC, they were mainly built as grand burial chambers for dead pharaohs who ruled over Ancient Egypt.
While they may be incredible and old AF, they've been eclipsed in age by Australia's version of the Great Pyramids.
Okay, these mounds - found in Cape York at the northern tip of Queensland - don't appear to have quite the same impact as a towering archaeoastronomical structure, but they do mean a lot for researchers looking into human history and social hierarchy.
According to the Daily Mail, many people believed these mounds in Mapoon were just that: mounds - nothing but slopes. A part of the natural landscape.
But archaeologists have used a range of different technologies to scan what is lurking underneath the surface of the mound and have found human tombs. The researchers also found stones, coral, spears and other objects inside the mounds.
Archaeologist Dr Mary-Jean Sutton told Daily Mail Australia: "They could be 6,000 years old. They could be tens of thousands of years old.
"We believe potentially 5,000 to 6,000 years old but they could be much, much older and potentially also younger, and we need to carry out more research to date them.
"We know these mounds are the largest and most complex in terms of what is found in the Cape and dating earth mounds is a big academic debate, as is their use. So this is a major finding in terms of that scientific debate."
Local elders like Aunty Diane Nicholls reckon this finding will be imperative in helping preserve their history. Some Aboriginals thought the mounds could just be the result of overzealous bush turkeys, who are known to build mounds similar to the ones found here, but this latest research has thrown that theory in the bin.
Aunty Diane told the Mail: "I think they understand now how important these sand mounds are. Now we know they do exist and it's time for us as traditional owners to work out how to protect and manage and maintain them."
While there might not be people coming from all around the world to see these mounds, it's a huge advancement in researchers' understanding of ancient Aboriginals.
The Indigenous Aussies did have elders but these structures suggest there was a much bigger hierarchy in place for the elite members of each group.
Featured Image Credit: Virtus Heritage