Atacama Desert, Chile
A geoglyph is a drawing on the ground, or a large motif, (generally greater than 4 metres) or design produced on the ground, either by arranging clasts (stones, stone fragments, gravel or earth) to create a positive geoglyph (stone arrangement/alignment, petroform, earth mound) or by removing patinated clasts to expose unpatinated ground (negative geoglyph).
Some of the most famous geoglyphs are the Nazca Lines in Peru. Other areas with geoglyphs include Western Australia. Hill figures, turf mazes and the stone-lined labyrinths of Scandinavia, Iceland, Lappland and the former Soviet Union are types of geoglyph. The largest geoglyph is the Marree Man in South Australia.
Mysterious 2,000-year-old rock art of mythical beasts and ancient rituals in Venezuela is revealed in unprecedented detail Daily Mail - December 7, 2017
They're thought to be some of the largest rock engravings in the world, and now scientists have mapped stunning carvings in Western Venezuela for the first time. The engravings, known as petroglyphs, are around 2,000 years old and include depictions of animals, humans and cultural rituals. Researchers hope that mapping the petroglyphs will shed new light into their archaeological and ethnographic context.
Jesuit priests described the area as home to the native Adoles people and the rapids were a key meeting point on trading route. Eight groups of engraved rock art were recorded on five islands within the Rapids. The largest panel is 304 square metres, and contains at least 93 individual engravings, the largest of which measure several metres across. Another engraving of a horned snake measures more than 30 metres in length. The team used drones to photograph the engravings, some of which are in highly inaccessible areas.
Mysterious Elk-Shaped Structure Discovered in Russia Live Science - October 11, 2012
A huge geoglyph in the shape of an elk or deer discovered in Russia may predate Peru's famous Nazca Lines by thousands of years. The animal-shaped stone structure, located near Lake Zjuratkul in the Ural Mountains, north of Kazakhstan, has an elongated muzzle, four legs and two antlers. A historical Google Earth satellite image from 2007 shows what may be a tail, but this is less clear in more recent imagery. Excluding the possible tail, the animal stretches for about 900 feet (275 meters) at its farthest points (northwest to southeast), the researchers estimate, equivalent to two American football fields. The figure faces north and would have been visible from a nearby ridge.
Marree Man in South Australia
Nazca Lines of Peru
Andean Rock Art Pointed to Festival Sites in 300 B.C. National Geographic - May 5, 2014
Ancient residents of Peru laid down lines of rocks in the coastal desert that may have pointed to the sites of trade fairs, a new study suggests. The features date to around 300 B.C., centuries ahead of the famed Nasca lines. The Paracas people of southern Peru were some of the earliest settled villagers on the Andean coast. They're known for building two striking features: ceremonial mounds near their homes on the coast and lines of piled rock, or geoglyphs, in the overlooking highlands. Some of the lines stretch for more than 1.9 miles (3 kilometers). Other ancient Andean cultures, most famously the Nasca farther south, also built sizable geoglyphs. The Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences report, co-authored by Charles Stanish of the University of California, Los Angeles, offers a new explanation for the lines.
Stunning Astronomical Alignment Found at Peru Pyramid Live Science - May 6, 2013
An ancient astronomical alignment in southern Peru has been discovered by researchers between a pyramid, two stone lines and the setting sun during the winter solstice. During the solstice, hundreds of years ago, the three would have lined up to frame the pyramid in light. The two stone lines, called geoglyphs, are located about 1.2 miles (2 kilometers) east-southeast from the pyramid. They run for about 1,640 feet (500 meters), and researchers say the lines were "positioned in such a way as to frame the pyramid as one descended down the valley from the highlands."
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