Easter Island Was Not Destroyed By Warfare

Posted: Feb 17 2016, 8:13am CST | by , Updated: Feb 17 2016, 9:51pm CST, in News | Latest Science News

Easter Island Was Not Destroyed by Warfare
A map of the Pacific Islands showing Rapa Nui. Credit: Carl Lipo, Binghamton University
  • Easter Island Inhabitants weren’t Wiped out due to Warfare

It has been discovered that the inhabitants of Easter Island weren’t wiped out due to warfare.

Artifacts found on the beaches of Rapa Nui, Chile, were once thought to have been the pointed weapon-like spare parts of spears. Now though they have been identified as everyday all-purpose tools that were used by the ordinary citizens.

Thus it seems that the ancient civilization of Easter Island did not face a decline due to internecine battles. Other reasons were operating behind the scenes. The standard explanation has sort of fallen flat on its face.

Traditionally historians had written in textbooks that before the arrival of the Europeans, a scarcity of resources took place and so civil wars began among the Easter Island natives.

This was thought to have led to the breakdown of their culture and civilization. The evidence for this is the thousands of obsidian arrowheads stranded on the beaches.

These are like sharp glass and may have been used in warfare. A technique known as morphometrics was employed to gauge the obsidian objects that were thought to have been weapons of warfare. The result was that these so-called weapons turned out to be useful tools only.

Compared to European tools and weapons, these obsidian objects of interest are a wholly different bunch of material goods. While anything may be employed as a weapon under certain circumstances, in real life conditions of warfare, weapons have to fulfill certain criteria.

They have to be purpose-built and fashioned to kill or maim. The objects found on Easter Island are not qualified to be used as weapons. That is the end of the story.

The natives never resorted to any in-fighting. That they decimated each other was a European fabrication that was invented later on to cover certain gaps in the historical record.

These tools were actually used for tattooing purposes or for plant processing. This here was a civilization way ahead of its time and its inhabitants didn’t self-destruct.

The fact that we see rocks and desolate plains today is not sufficient evidence to state that internal war led to the collapse of the society. Such fake explanations simply have no place in modern history.

The truth is very hard to gauge and discover and needs patient analysis. By making things up, historians are doing their field great dishonor. If one does not know anything about something, one must observe silence instead of generating rumors.

The study has been published in the journal Antiquity.

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<a href="/latest_stories/all/all/20" rel="author">Sumayah Aamir</a>
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