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Zorats Kar

Zorats

Zorats Kar (Power Stone) believed to be an ancient observatory quite similar to Stonehenge in England. The columns sit like soldiers on a hill, huddled in formation. The 204 stones near Sisian have been ascribed with mystical, fertility and cosmic powers, but rarely have ancient monuments caused such a sensation in astronomical circles. These simple stones stretched out along the crest of a hill overlooking the Sisian River challenge the very dating of early astronomy and the answer to the question, “Who were the first astronomers?” If proven true, a current controversial dating of the stones at Sisian predate England’s Stonehenge, they predate the Babylonian’s claim to being the first astronomers, and they confirm what some people already suspect: that Armenia is the birthplace of the zodiac, and perhaps the beginning of navigation and the concept of time. Scholars can’t agree on their age, or purpose, or function. Some say they are at least 7000 years old and have served as an observatory. Others believe it was a pagan temple. Still others dismiss it as nothing more than a natural formation of stones. In 1998, archeological digs unearthed mass tombs as well as clay jars; household items and unique burial and ceremonial items are on display at the Sisian History Museum. The rest are being studied at the Archeology Institute in Yerevan. Researchers are leaning towards an approximate age of 3800-4000 years for this complex, which may have been a temple to the sun. The position of the rocks and the holes on each stone lead the scholars to believe that Zorakar served as an observatory where solar and lunar eclipses were predicted, and a calendar was created. Western scientists are quick to say that this is a copy of similar stone formations, which have been found in France, Ireland, Scotland and elsewhere in Europe.

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