Easter Island shock: Archaeologists make stunning discovery about mystery heads- NASA News
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Almost 1,000 stone carvings of heads are littered throughout Easter Island, in the Pacific Ocean, but researchers have been unsure of their purpose. The purpose and relevance of the statues known as ‘moai’, which were build by Pacific Islanders who inhabited the island until they dies out around the 16th century, has never been understood, but now experts believe they have made a major breakthrough. Up to 90 percent of the statues were produced in a quarry called Rano Raraku – a volcanic crater which makes up just one percent of the island’s area. An international team of researchers collected soil samples for chemical analysis and found the region to be extremely fertile. The quarry region was not only used to create the moai, but it was also used to grow crops such as banana, taro, sweet potato, and paper mulberry. As a result of the quarry’s fertility, the team of researchers believe the statues could have been built to represent fertility and prosper. Building on that, some 400 statues were left in the quarry, suggesting they were there as the islanders could have believed they simulated and boosted fertilisation in the area in the hope they would yield better crop results. Geoarchaeologist Sarah Sherwood from the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee,…