Human history is quite an enigma. We know so little, and much of what we think we know is always subject to change since information constantly emerges that challenges our current understanding of the world.
Our world is also no stranger to unexplained mysteries, and there are numerous examples of verified phenomena, ancient monuments, books, teachings, understandings, and more that lack any explanation and counter what we’ve already been taught. We are like a race with amnesia, as author Graham Hancock once said, able to put together small bits and pieces of our history yet unable to fit it all together. There are still many missing pieces to the puzzle.
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One great example is the Piri Reis map, a genuine document and world map that was copied at Constantinople in AD 1513 from older documents and discovered in 1929. A German theologian named Gustav Adolf Deissmann was cataloguing items in the Topkapi Palace library in Istanbul when he happened across a curious parchment located among some disregarded material. The original is at least 5000 years old. Unfortunately the full map in its entirety was never found.
It was drawn by Admiral Piri Reis of the Ottoman era, a well-known historical figure. He made a copy of the map, which was originally drawn based on documents that date back to at least the fourth century BC, and on information obtained by multiple explorers. Reis was well known for his interest in geography and navigation.
“The Piri Reis’ Maps, presumed to have been made over 5,000 years ago, give startling evidence of a lost civilization that may have been more advanced than anyone could have imagined. There has been much controversy about them in recent years, and there is much more to be discovered.”
Carris S. Astronomy A20, Northwestern University, 1968. A Paper written by one of Dr. J. Allen Hynek’s students.
Piri Reis had a pilot who was a salve, this slave had been with Christopher Columbus on three of his voyages. When captured, the pilot was found to possess maps used by Columbus. Reis used this and eight other Greek maps that were handed down from Alexander the Great to make his world map.
In one of his notes, Piri Reis personally explains the manner in which the map came into existence:
“This section shows in what way this map was drawn. In this century there is no other map like this in anyone’s possession. The hand of this poor man has drawn it and now it is constructed. From about twenty charts and Mappae Mundi – these are maps drawn in the days of Alexander, Lord of Two Horns, which show inhabited quarter of the world; the Arabs name these charts Jaferiye – from eight Jaferiyes of that kind and one Arabic map of Hind, and from the maps just drawn by four Portuguese which show the countries of Sind, Hind, and China geometrically drawn and also from a map drawn by Columbus in the western region, I have extracted it. By reducing these maps to one scale this final form was arrived at. So that the present map is as correct and reliable or the Seven Seas as the maps of these our countries are considered correct and reliable by Seamen.”
“Piri Reis’ Map,” Maps Division, The Library of Congress.
Why The Map Is So Compelling
One of the most compelling facts about the map is that it includes a continent that our history books tell us was not discovered until 1818. Again, the map is at least 5000 years old.
The map shows the coast of South America, Africa, and Antarctica with precise detail. This means that there were competent explorers and map makers thousands of years before Columbus.
“For instance, the drawn coast line of the Antarctic shows the line which is now under the ice cap, but must have been surveyed twenty centuries ago. It has been said that the cartographers who prepared these maps were members of survey teams who had visited almost the entire earth. They were not adventurers, but competent scientists skilled in the art of determining astro-positions and traverses.”
Carris S. Astronomy A20, Northwestern University, 1968. A Paper written by one of Dr. J. Allen Hynek’s students
In the 1950’s, the Head Engineer of the Hydrographic Office of the US Navy gave Arlington H. Mallery, author of “Lost America” and a well known authority on ancient maps, along with M. I. Watlers, a cartographer formerly with the United States Hydrographic Office, a copy of the map. They found that, with precise accuracy, the various land and water areas in their exact location. According to them, the maps “bring home to us the fact that the oldest human records that we have that are absolutely authentic are navigational charts.”
“They found, after much intensive examination, that Columbus had a map with him that showed accurately the Palmer Peninsula in the Antarctic Continent. The problem of how they could have been so accurate so many thousands of years ago, when the scientific methods of mapping have just recently come to be known was puzzled over by them both. They said that there was very little ice then, but the map had a record of every mountain range in North America and Canada, some of which were not known to the Army Map Service. They have since found them. Mr. Mallery said: “Just how they were able to do it – you will probably recall the tradition of the Greeks of the airplane – maybe they had the airplane.” (This idea could even be brought so far as to consider the idea of UFO’s, or a superior being from another part of the universe, producing the maps, as well as an advanced civilization inhabiting our own Earth.) Also, they knew their longitude absolutely correctly – something that we did not know until about two centuries ago.
Carris S. Astronomy A20, Northwestern University, 1968. A paper written by one of Dr. J. Allen Hynek’s students
Mallery goes on, emphasizing the fact that these explorers and map makers were, as already mentioned, clearly well before the time of Columbus, and that they were:
“Not only explorers, but that they must have had a very competent and far flung hydrographic organization, because you can’t map as large as a continent as Antarctica as they have, half of it, or as extensive an area as Greenland or half of the continent of North America, as we know they did do, probably 5,000 years ago, it can’t be done by any single individual or small group of explorers. It means an aggregation of skilled scientists who are familiar with astronomy as well as the methods required for topographic surveying.”
It makes me wonder, perhaps they had assistance from the indigenous at the time, again, more than 5000 years ago. Another quote comes to my mind here by Richard Wagamese when Mallery mentioned assistance from elsewhere, I thought it was somewhat fitting. Wagamese was a well known Ojibway author and journalist from the Wabaseemoong Independent Nations in Northwestern Ontario, Canada. He once wrote,
“My people tell of Star People who came to us many generations ago. The Star people brought spiritual teachings and stories and maps of the cosmos and they offered these freely. They were kind, loving and set a great example. When they left us, my people say there was a loneliness like no other.
“Star People” by Richard Wagamese
The Piri Reis map depicts what is known as “Queen Maud Land,” a 2.7 million-square-kilometer (1 million sq mi) region of Antarctica, as it looked many years ago. This region and other regions shown on the map are thought to have been covered completely in ice at the time, but the map tells a different story, showing them free of ice, which suggests they passed through a long ice-free period that may not have ended until around six thousand years ago. This conflicts with current research on these areas. Today, geological evidence has confirmed that this area could not have been ice-free until about 4000 BC.
The map shows that the ice age took place at a much later time than thought. The ice glacier that was shown on the map of North America was in existence 15,000 years ago and disappeared, presumably. But this map shows that glacier only 5,000 years ago. Other maps indicate that the glaciers had disappeared or else had not appeared at the time these maps were made, or had only begum to appear..
Basically, the official science has been saying all along that the ice-cap which covers the Antarctic is million years old. The Piri Reis Antarctica map shows that the northern part of that continent has been mapped before the ice did cover it. This is unexplainable, and it’s unfathomable to think that this map actually originated millions of years ago.
The map, again, is also precise and exact with longitude, and the location of everything is precise with what we know today. There are several examples showing this. The map also contains details of the terrain, the mountains, perfect coast lines, with rugged and numerous mountain ranges.
Professor Charles Hapgood, who was a university history professor, wrote to the United States Air Force Reconnaissance Technical Squadron (SAC) and they also confirmed that “this indicates the coastline had been mapped before it was covered by the ice-cap.” They also went on to state that “we have no idea how the data on this map can be reconciled with the supposed state of geographical knowledge in 1513.”
Here’s what Hapgood had to say about it in his book Maps of the Ancient Sea Kings:
“It appears that accurate information has been passed down from people to people. It appears that the charts must have originated with a people unknown and they were passed on, perhaps by the Minoans and the Phoenicians, who were, for a thousand years and more, the greatest sailors of the ancient world. We have evidence that they were collected and studied in the great library of Alexandria (Egypt) and that compilations of them were made by the geographers that worked there.”
Furthermore, the map is very detailed and includes mountain ranges in the Antarctic and other parts of North America that were not even discovered until 1952.
“His idea is original, of great simplicity, and – if it continues to prove itself – of great importance to everything that is related to the history of the Earth’s surface.”
Einstein on Hapgood’s interpretations of the map.
Hapgood and mathematician Richard W. Strachan have also provided more interesting information. For example, a comparison with modern day photographs taken from satellite images shows remarkable similarities; the originals of Piri Reis’ maps might well have been aerial photographs taken from a very high height. How is this possible for a map that was made 5000 years ago, or perhaps even earlier?
“A spaceship hovers high above Cairo and points its camera straight downward. When the film is developed, the following picture would emerge: everything that is in a radius of about 5,000 miles of Cairo is reproduced correctly, because it lies directly below the lens. But the countries and continents become increasingly distorted the farther we move our eyes from the center of the picture. Why is this? Owing to the spherical shape of the earth, the continents away from the center ‘sink downward.’ South America, for example, appears strangely distorted length-ways, exactly as it does on the Piri Reis maps! And exactly as it does on the photographs taken from the American lunar probes.”
– Erich von Däniken, Chariots of the Gods
Changing Our View of The Past
The fact that this map could have been made with some sort of aerial technology is quite a thought, isn’t it? Even if this isn’t an option, who had the ability to undertake such an accurate geographical survey in Antarctica and other parts of the world so professionally such a long time ago? How would they have known to detail the map as if it were taken from above, with knowledge about the Earth’s shape and more? How would they be able to determine their longitude?
There are so many unanswered questions.
The Piri Reis’ Map. A Paper written by one of Dr. J. Allen Hynek’s students at Northwestern University. 1968. You can access the paper in its entirety here.
Hancock, Graham. Fingerprints of the Gods: Canada: Anchor Canada, 2005.
Daniken, Erich. Chariots of The Gods. New York: Berkley Books, 1970.