politics & history 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World

Jeff Richard
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At last count, the world contained about 7.4 billion people. That's quite a lot already, and it's impossible to say exactly how many have lived before us. With so many people in total, it's no wonder that countless stories have been left untold, objects left buried, and mysteries left unsolved. 

And as much as we know about the ancient world, there is still so much more we can't fully comprehend - and perhaps never will - about the distant past.

Symbols. Scrolls. Artifacts. Sometimes it's hard to fathom exactly what else could be out there, or even in our own backyards. Some believe there is ancient technology yet to be discovered, or even entire civilizations left to be found.

Click through below to find what some of our ancestors left behind...

The Devil's Bible

The Devil's Bible is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo: Kungl. biblioteket/via Wikimedia

Also referred to as the Codex Gigas, the Devil's Bible is a massive medieval tome, written in the 13th century by a monk who was said to have made a deal with the Devil in order to finish it. According to legend, the monk had been sentenced to be walled-up alive as punishment for breaking his vows. He promised the monastery that if they let him live, he would write a book that would contain all human knowledge - in a single day. To fulfill this promise, the monk sold his soul to Lucifer.

The real basis for this legend is likely the fact that even though the manuscript is extremely long, it appears to have been written by just one person over a relatively short period of time. 

Created using more than 160 animal skins, and requiring two people to even lift it, the Codex Gigas contains the complete Latin translation of the Bible, as well as multiple other texts, including works by Hippocrates and Cosmas of Prague - not to mention medical formulas, texts on exorcisms, and a large depiction of the Devil himself.

Twelve pages of the original manuscript are missing, and what they might have contained remains a mystery - some rumors say those pages contain secret Satanic texts, perhaps even a method for conjuring the Devil himself.

The Nazca Lines

The Nazca Lines is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo:  Diego Delso/via Wikimedia

Most people are likely aware of crop circles: sprawling, circular patterns often made in the corn fields of farmers throughout the world, and said to be created by extraterrestrials. They're possibly a form of communication, possibly a warning. But perhaps the most fascinating of these types of symbols, dubbed geoglyphs, are the Nazca Lines found across the dry, desert plains of southern Peru. 

Said to be created by the Nazca culture between 500 BCE and 500 CE, there are more than 100 of these massive glyphs, depicting everything from simple lines, to intricate designs of monkeys, humans, fish, jaguars, and birds. Although the symbols are recognizable, the true purpose of these glyphs is unknown. Some say the lines were created as a means of giving incoming sailors directions. Others say they were used for astronomical purposes, as a way to signal the stars.

The Underwater Ruins Of Japan

The Underwater Ruins Of Japan is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo:  jpatokal/via Wikipedia

Submerged just off the coast of Yonaguni Jima is Japan's own Atlantis, a sprawling underwater city believed to be at least 5,000 years old.

First discovered by a diver in 1995, the city was first believed to be nothing more than a bizarre series of natural rock formations, all of which mysteriously featured perfect right angles and straight lines. Later searches revealed everything from a large stone gateway to carved stairways and streets to vaulting towers. 

Believed to be the former city of the Jomon people, experts theorize that the city didn't exactly "fall" into the sea like the fabled Atlantis, but rather became submerged as sea levels rose over thousands of years. As scientists continue to research the underwater site, many believe this particular site could hold key information to other possible underwater cities around the world.

Roman Dodecahedrons

Roman Dodecahedrons is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo:  Itub/via Wikimedia

Unlike many other ancient artifacts, there are actually about a hundred of these mysterious objects floating around. Typically made of either stone or bronze, the hollow Roman dodecahedrons have twelve sides, with a small circle on each, and pegs jutting out from the connecting corners.

Although they resemble nautical devices, the purpose of these dodecahedrons is unknown. Historians have guessed everything from fortune tellers to candleholders. Some say they were used for astrological or religious means. Experts have dated them as far back as the 2nd and 3rd centuries CE, and suggest they were used to sow winter grains, or even to calibrate water pipes for Roman architects.

The King List

The King List is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo: Public Domain/via Wikimedia

Going all the way back to the third millennium BCE is the Sumerian King List, a listing of all Sumer kings, their respective dynasties, locations, and times in power. While this may not seem like too much of a mystery, it's what is inscribed along with the list of kings that makes it so interesting. 

There are mythological elements embedded within it. Along with a who's-who of Sumerians in power, the King List also incorporates events such as the Great Flood and the tales of Gilgamesh, stories that are often referred to as simple fables. Theorists take this to mean that the Old Testament stories were true, or that the kings listed were actually gods or demi-gods.

Easter Island's Rongorongo Writings

Easter Island's Rongorongo... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo: Public Domain/via Wikimedia

Easter Island has many strange mysteries associated with it. The large moai statues are the most famous, but some people that the entire island was once used by extraterrestrials as a means to communicate as well.

But there is still another strange mystery linked to the famous Polynesian lands - an intricate series of glyphs believed to be writing or proto-writing, an earlier form of communication based on symbols rather than characters. 

First discovered by Eugene Eyraud in 1864, the glyphs are said to go back to around 1200, and feature imagery similar to that of other religious signs found in the area. To date, scientists have not been able to determine exactly what the glyphs say, or link them to any outside cultures. The symbols were carved on wood using small obsidian flakes or shark teeth. 

Assuming that Rongorongo is indeed a form of writing, it would be a fascinating example of an entirely unique language that formed independently by itself on an isolated island.

The Sajama Lines

The Sajama Lines is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo: ufology aliens anomaly/via YouTube

Western Bolivia's Sajama lines are a series of massive drawings etched into the earth, numbering into the thousands. First discovered in 1932 by Aimé Felix Tschiffely, the lines, between 3-10 feet wide individually, connect about 8,700 square miles via an intricate web-like design. Because of this, they are not only the largest archeological site in the Andes, but possibly in the entire world.

The question remains: what is the purpose behind these mysterious lines? Scientists have deduced they were originally created by the indigenous people who lived near the Sajama volcano, but for reasons unknown. Some have speculated they were used for religious purposes.

The Hellenikon Pyramid

The Hellenikon Pyramid is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list 17 Eerie and Incredible Unsolved Ancient Mysteries from Around the World
Photo:  Schuppi/via Wikimedia

While it's fairly common to label the Egyptian pyramids the stuff of "ancient mysteries," it's something entirely new to discover similar structures all around the world. Such is the case with the Pyramids of Argolis, Greece, and their most famous structure, the Hellenikon Pyramid

The true purpose of the Hellenikon remains unknown, although experts have theorized that a battle once took place at the site, and the structure was subsequently built as a monument to those who died - although nothing has been found within the pyramid's walls to provide evidence of an actual tomb.

While the mystery of what's inside the Hellenikon is certainly intriguing, what truly fascinates theorists is the fact that it was supposedly built in 2720 BCE - making it significantly older than any of the Egyptian pyramids.