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Mysteries

The Mystery of Kensington Runestone

The origin of the Kensington Runestone has been the subject of much controversy and speculation for well over a century now. The 200-pound rune-covered slab was unearthed in 1898 by a Swedish American farmer named Olof Ohman while he was felling a tree on his farmland near Kensington, Minnesota (roughly 15 miles west of Alexandria).

As Ohman and his 10-year-old son Edward were clearing the land, they found the stone lying face down, entangled in the roots of an aspen tree located on a small knoll. Ohman’s son was the first to notice the rune carvings on the stone, which Ohman incorrectly suspected were of Native American origin.

Little did anyone know at the time that Olof’s accidental discovery would set in motion a whirlwind of events that would ultimately change the life of Ohman and his family forever.

To say that the origin of the Kensington Runestone has been a lightning rod for debate would be a gross understatement. For more than 100 years now, the iconic stone has been studied by geologists, runologists, scientists, and linguists alike, all attempting to ascertain whether or not the rune inscriptions on the stone are indeed authentic.

The main question at the center of the debate is how a runic artifact, clearly dated 1362, could surface in North America. Several scholars and linguists have rejected the stone as a hoax, claiming that some of the runes on the stone didn’t even exist as part of the language in 1362, implying that Ohman must have carved the inscriptions himself.

Every time that this type of situation has taken place, inevitably some new series of medieval runes are discovered in Europe that correctly date the stone to the 14th century.

The old Germanic language found on the Kensington Runestone is so complex and loaded with nuances of form and structure that only a tiny handful of people with extensive training in old Germanic linguistics could even attempt to carve something of similar complexity. The likelihood of a rural farmer in 1898 being able to accomplish this type of intricate carving is essentially zero.

Within roughly twenty years of the stone’s discovery, a Minnesota-based geologist named Winton Minchell began to take an interest in the stone and performed several studies to determine its origin.

Even with the somewhat limited science of his day, he was able to conclude that the carvings in the rune stone were indeed very old, and that there was no reason to doubt that the 1632 date inscribed on the stone was accurate.

In the year 2000, another Minnesota geologist named Scott Wolter began performing scientific tests on the stone by comparing the deterioration of silicate minerals found in Colonial gravestones of similar composition and environment with the deterioration in the Kensington Runestone.

Through several rigorous tests, he was able to determine that the carvings in the stone were already centuries old by the time the stone was unearthed, and could not have possibly originated in the late 1800s.

Although Wolter’s findings do not conclusively state that the rune inscriptions were carved in the exact year of 1362, they do confirm that they could not have been carved by Ohman or anyone living during his time period.

The inscription on the rune stone has been roughly translated several times throughout the past century, and its meaning is somewhat benign; it tells the story of a group of sailors on an expedition that presumably set up camp on or close to the place where Ohman discovered the stone. The prevailing (and generally accepted) translation reads as follows:

8 : göter : ok : 22 : norrmen : po :
…o : opþagelsefärd : fro :
vinland : of vest : vi :
hade : läger : ved : 2 : skLär : en :
dags: rise: norr: fro: þeno: sten:
vi : var : ok : fiske : en : dagh : äptir :
vi : kom : hem : fan : 10 : man : röde :
af : blod : og : ded : AVM :
frälse : äf : illü.

“Eight Gotalanders (a.k.a. Geats or Goths) and 22 Northmen on an acquisition journey from Vinland far to the west. We had a camp by two shelters, one day’s journey north from this stone. We were fishing one day. When we came home, we found 10 men red from blood and dead. Ave Maria, save from evil.”

Also, on the side of the stone is the following inscription (prevailing translation):

här : (10) : mans : ve : havet : at : se :
äptir : vore : skip : 14 : dagh : rise :
from : þeno : öh : ahr : 1362 :

“There are ten men by the inland sea to look after our ships 14 days’ journey from this peninsula (or island). Year 1362.”

Many critics have accused Ohman of forging the inscriptions due to his Swedish heritage, claiming that he was looking for a way to validate the famous Swedish tales of their Viking ancestors settling in America long before Columbus.

To this end, many fame-seeking scholars, linguists and academicians have published books refuting the authenticity of the rune inscriptions, asserting that Ohman knew enough about runes to simply carve the inscriptions himself, and that he “pretended” to find the stone in order to gain notoriety.

This is a flimsy argument, especially in light of the rune stone’s linguistic complexities, as mentioned earlier. These accusations have been leveled at Ohman over and over again over the past century, although there is absolutely no concrete evidence that Ohman ever attempted to leverage his discovery of the Kensington Runestone for personal gain, financial or otherwise.

The Ohman family has never denied that the Kensington Runestone is a genuine medieval artifact, and they have staunchly maintained that stance ever since Ohman’s discovery in 1898.

The Kensington Stone now rests in a small museum in Alexandria, MN. Time and time again the academic or scholarly publications that have questioned or dismissed the authenticity of Ohman’s story have been refuted by way of new scientific findings.

Unfortunately, many scholarly skeptics and naysayers have allowed their own personal agendas to interfere with objective research, publishing biased findings that inevitably have to be retracted later.

Equally unfortunate is the negative toll that this protracted controversy has taken on many members of Ohman’s family. It is hard to believe that an innocent finding by a Swedish farmer in 1898 could be the source of a century-plus long battle rife with controversy, manipulation, deceit, and contention.

Two of the most repeated critiques against the stones authenticity are an out of time word and a claimed hidden cipher.

The criticism of an out of time word concerns the signal use of the of the word opþagelsefardþ (journey of discovery). Skeptics contend that is this is a relatively new word and did not exist in the 14th century.

Those supporting the the rune stone’s authenticity hold that the runes can also be translated as uptagelsefart (acquisition expedition). Critics argue that this would be inconsistent with how similar runes were used elsewhere on the stone. This criticism seems to assume a well educated rune smith created the stone.

The hidden cipher was first claimed by Mats G. Larsson in a paper in Saga och Sed 2010. Larson suggested that the numbers taken in sequence as they appear on the stone when reversed revealed a hidden cipher for Ohman’s signature.

8 – 22 – 2 – 10 – 10 – 14 – 13 – 62 reversed gives 8 – 22 – 2 – 10 – 10 – 14 – 13 – 62

Larsson counts the words from the left on odd-numbered lines and from the right on even-numbered lines to obtain the following:

62: öh
13: mans
14: fan
10: vi
10: ved
2: hade
22: ved
8: sten

“Öh mans fan vi ved hade ved sten”, or in English, “The Öhmans found. We kept/collected firewood at the stone.”

Note: The above is Larsons published translation and requires a mixture of Danish and Swedish. The unfiltered translation is “Ohmans found we by wood stone”

On face value this sounds pretty damming but for some reason has not been widely circulated by Bad Archeology websites. Maybe this is why. If one is allowed to mix Danish and Swedish as Larson did then you can also arrive at:

Öh mans fån(Swedish) vi ved hade ved sten(Danish) or in English “Ohmans idiot we hate the stone”

Why would Ohman call himself an idiot? Also if Larson’s alleged secret signature is correct it’s an odd one. The message, if real, seems more about finding fire wood than taking credit for the creation of the stone. Larson’s cypher may be a form of pareidolia or finding meaning based on ones personal bias.

The nuances of the accusations have changed a little over time as more evidence has surfaced supporting the genuineness of the Kensington Runestone; critics now claim that although there is no evidence that Ohman carved the stone, they still dismiss its historical authenticity. Their big argument? “It may not have been Ohman, but it was ‘someone else’.”

It almost seems as if many skeptics are willing to accept just about any other possibility except that the 1362 party actually did carve the inscriptions. Although there are many that would still attempt to refute the validity of the Ohman family’s claims, the authenticity of the Kensington Stone has stood the test of time.

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Mysteries

The origin of gold turned out to be a cosmic mystery

Astronomers calculated the origin of all chemical elements and wondered: where is there so much gold in the universe? The fact is that there are not enough known processes to explain the observed abundance of this precious metal.

Details are set out in a scientific article published in the Astrophysical Journal.

Astronomers believe that the earliest atomic nuclei appeared in the era of primordial nucleosynthesis, which began in the first seconds after the Big Bang and lasted several tens of minutes. At the same time, almost all the hydrogen available in the Universe was formed, a significant part of helium, a certain amount of lithium and an insignificant amount of beryllium and boron. All these chemical elements are light and are located at the very beginning of the periodic table.

The appearance of all the other atomic nuclei is somehow connected with the stars. New nuclei are formed in the bowels of all the stars without exception, as well as in the atmospheres of red giants, during supernova explosions and collisions of neutron stars.

What contribution does each of these processes make to the formation of certain chemical elements? This remains a matter of controversy.

The authors of the new study were the first to calculate the process of formation of all stable nuclei from carbon to uranium from first principles. This means that they solved the equations of nuclear physics in all their complexity, without resorting to simplifying assumptions.

These calculations made it possible to find out how much of this or that element is formed in a typical small star, in one supernova explosion, and so on. Based on this, scientists calculated the role of various celestial bodies and the events occurring with them in the huge chemical complex of the Universe.

The origin of various chemical elements in the periodic table according to a new study.  Illustration by Chiaki Kobayashi et al., Sahm Keily.

It turned out, for example, that small stars that do not explode like supernovae produce half of all carbon in the universe. The second half falls on massive luminaries that end their lives in a supernova explosion.

It is supernovae, according to the authors, that supply the universe with iron. Moreover, half of it falls on explosions of massive stars, and another half – on type Ia supernovae, that is thermonuclear explosions of white dwarfs .

However, the most unusual result concerns gold. In previous studies, the origin of the noble metal was attributed to collisions of neutron stars. Now scientists have questioned this.

“Even the most optimistic estimates of the neutron-star collision rate simply cannot explain the apparent abundance of this element in the universe,” says co-author Amanda Karakas of Monash University in Australia. “It came as a surprise.”

However, astronomers already have their own version of the origin of gold. They speculate that the problem is in supernovae of an unusual type. Explosions of very massive stars with strong magnetic fields could provide space with the observed amount of gold, experts say.

At the same time, the authors do not deny the contribution of collisions of neutron stars to the synthesis of other chemical elements .

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Mysteries

Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi desert

Is this part of China’s classified space program or another Chinese surprise?

For the first time, mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert, which is located in China, near the border with Mongolia, were seen in 2011. Seen, as is often the case in this century, using Google Earth. The program does not comment on the signs in any way, and no official reports from the Chinese government about exercises or tests in the Gobi Desert have followed.

There are several mysterious patterns, and each next one is even more mysterious than the previous one. Judge for yourself.

City models?

These two patterns resemble streets, only without houses, cars and shawarma stalls – in general, without everything that we are used to on the streets. Perhaps these street models were made in order to test weapons “in the city”. Then why not build houses? Or have the weapons already been tested, and this is all that remains of the “cities”?

Photo # 1 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert
Photo # 2 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert

Destroyed car park?

In this picture, those with an inquisitive mind and keen eyesight will make out destroyed cars. But why are they here? Perhaps they participated in weapons tests. Or is it just a warehouse of disused vehicles? But then why do we need large squares in the picture?

Photo # 3 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert

Runways?

Of course, this is the first thing that comes to mind. And the most logical thing, even if there is no hint of airplanes in this picture. Okay, let’s say these are really runways. But why then is the right stripe so defiantly glowing?

Photo # 4 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert

Chinese Stonehenge?

The most mysterious pattern of all. A circular one, consisting of stones or small structures, in the center of the pattern at the time of shooting there are three planes. Anyone who has flown an airplane at least once cannot help but wonder: where is the runway? Indeed, if this is a kind of air base, then where is the runway?

After the images were released, The Telegraph spoke with defense expert Tim Ripley. He authoritatively stated that the circular pattern resembles a test site for jet weapons, something similar he saw at Area 51 in Nevada.

Photo # 5 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert

Since the images with the mysterious signs were published, the Chinese government has not bothered to reveal the purpose of these objects. (It did work to block Google Earth in China, but it did not work.) Moreover, in 2018, another mysterious pattern was discovered not far from the patterns listed above.

The new pattern was studied in detail in a video with the explanatory title “No one can still explain what was found in the Gobi Desert.” This time we are talking about cross “runways” surrounded by incomprehensible glowing circles, vaguely resembling an infinity sign.

Photo # 6 - Mysterious signs in the middle of the Gobi Desert

According to the author of the video, if these are runways, then they have never been used. In addition, there are several dozen structures next to the runway that look abandoned. And here is the video itself:

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Mysteries

What secrets are kept by the stones of pharaohs and kings

One of the most beloved topics of the yellow press of the last century was the scary tale of precious stones, a typical example of which is the story of the “curse of the Hope diamond.”

It was a beautiful blue diamond with a purple tint and looked something like this: The modern history of the stone began in the 17th century in India, where it was somehow obtained by the jeweler Jean Baptiste Tavernier. He brought the stone to France, where he sold it to King Louis XIV, after which Louis fell from the slope, injured his leg, got sepsis and died, and Jean Bastist himself had been eaten by dogs before that.

The next owner of the stone was Louis XV, who presented it to Madame de Montespan. After a couple of months, the king lost interest in Madame and she moved to a monastery, where she died. The king returned the gift and passed it on to Marie Antoinette, who was soon executed by fiery French revolutionaries. With this pebble in the pendant, she ascended the scaffold.

What happened to the revolutionary Jacques who stole the stone is unknown, most likely he died or was eaten alive by lice, but in 1813 the stone appeared in a jewelry store in London, where the Englishman Henry Francis Hope bought it – he began to show everyone the diamond, so he entered into history as the “Hope Diamond”.

But, as you might expect, Hope glued the flippers together and gave the diamond to his heir, Lord Francis Hope, who presented it to his bride. After that, the lord went bankrupt and was forced to descend to the plebeian hotel business, but his very first hotel burned down with his wife.

Then the stone was sawed and sold to new owners. One of them was American Evelyn Wolls McClynn. After that, her son died in a car accident, her husband ended up in an insane asylum, and Evelyn herself also went a little crazy and died. The second owners made it to America unsuccessfully, because they chose the Titanic as a means of travel.

Approximately the same fairy tale surrounds many famous stones. The balance with the bulldo in these fairy tales does not always converge, since the tales are invented by journalists for the money of jewelers: when the public learns that someone died from the stone, this leads to incredible enthusiasm and everyone rushes to look at the miracle, allowing the jeweler to make money out of thin air. However, these tales are based on the truth.

In particular, Hope’s diamond was stolen from the temple of the Indian goddess Sita, where it somehow decorated a statue. The energy of the stone was monstrous – sensitive people who took it in their hands sometimes fainted and then they were tormented by nightmarish visions for months.

But Sita was definitely out of business there. The topic was Indian priests who used temples and statues to collect energy from the flock: pilgrimage went to the temple for decades, prayed to one or another deity, and as a receiving matrix, the deity had a stone in its forehead or two stones in its eyes.

Then, when the stone was pumped up, it was replaced with a new one, and the old one began to be used in rituals. In particular, it could be presented to your own or a neighboring king in order to vacate the throne as soon as possible – the ruler who accepted such a gift would immediately die under certain circumstances.

In general, the magic of stones is a complex and poorly studied topic. Some people seem to be doing it, blowing some “secret knowledge” into the ears of adepts. Nevertheless, there seem to be some very interesting developments in the topic.

We will not compose an introduction to modern and, most likely, not very correct views of quantum mechanics, but in general terms we will recall and clarify. An electron in an atom rotates in two directions, as it were: on the one hand, it rotates around the nucleus (orbital angular momentum), on the other, around its axis (spin).

Therefore, if, in theory, you learn to change either the spin of an electron of a single atom, or the angular momentum, then the atom can be used as a cell for storing a unit of information.

The idea, of course, is quite crazy, but, as scitechdaily writes with reference to the just published scientific work, researchers from the Delft University of Technology managed, using a scanning tunneling microscope, to first capture an individual iron atom, then plant it astride a nitrogen atom, after what the orbital angular momentum of some of the electrons of the outer cloud has changed for the iron atom. Thus, an eternal unit cell of information was created:

Of course, experimenters are still quite a long way from creating a full-fledged storage ring – nevertheless, the direction of work is interesting. Most likely, they will not be able to write data to the atoms of crystals soon, but the technology for reading them already exists. And this opens up interesting perspectives.

If the guys from the Delft University of Technology came up with the idea of ​​writing data into the atoms of the crystal, then the guys who lived long before them probably came to the same idea, and given the antediluvian technologies of the builders of magalitic structures, the idea was most likely implemented in practice. Therefore, many stones may turn out to be something like ancient flash drives that contain a lot of information about the ancient world. Perhaps that is why all the rulers collect stones with terrible power.

In addition, pebbles around which jewelers have created aura of horror stories, pebbles from places of worship of various kinds, and so on are also of interest. All these objects carry some kind of information that is inaccessible to analog devices. But now, when the technology appears that allows us to consider various rubies and diamonds as a digital massif, pebbles can tell a lot about the real story, and about the role of people in this story, and about the outside world in general.

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