Stegosaur In Angkor Wat?

TVgeek

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Check out the article with photos:
http://www.cryptomundo.com/cryptozoo-news/dino-cambodia

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What real evidence exists for dinosaurs having survived into more contemporary times? What are we to make of the carving of a Stegosaur Stegosaur stenops) on an ancient Cambodian temple at Angkor Wat?
<-----snip------->

The reader input at the bottom has some very interesting
for/against arguments.

Enjoy!
TVgeek
 

evilsprout

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Great link.

To me it looks much more like a Sumatran Rhino...

http://www.ultimateungulate.com/Images/ ... nsis1.html

Maybe the lumps are depictions of clumps of fur (as shown in the photo), or some stylised feature such as leaves or mountains in the background.

Anyone got any bigger pictures of the other carvings on the wall? Squinting, they hardly look like zoological diagrams, making the "the tail looks more like a dinosaur than a rhino" argument a bit daft.
 

Hieru

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A couple of points really.

As an artist I always find these kinds of topics interesting. Similar 'evidence' crops up all over the world, but to be honest; I think that it is almost impossible to decipher stylised depictions of any subject. Artists regularly exaggerate certain features on their subjects and also embellish images with elements and abstractions that do not exist.

I've seen people try to decipher my own work only to find that most can't pick out details that seem obvious to myself. I can only imagine the confusion that might be caused by artworks that are not only thousands of years old, but originate from another culture.

My second point relates to the accuracy of non-western art. Quite often, whether anyone realises it or not, westerners view so-called primitive art as being naive; the connotation being that representations of actual objects are usually childlike and inaccurate. Drawing from a life-long interest in non-European art, I have found the opposite to be true. Granted, most 'primitive' art is highly stylised, but if you look beyond that, most representations of animals etc are usually highly anatomically accurate. You just have to learn how to read the images and set aside unnatural exaggerations and culturally influenced additions.

So where does this leave the Cambodian Stegosaur? Well, you can look at it two ways. The carving is either a rhino, surrounded by unknown stylised features, or..........................an unrecorded species. It's certainly not a Stegosaur (it would genuinely look like one if it was); but could it perhaps be a previously unseen species of Rhino that once sported skeletal platelets running down its back. If they served a Darwinian function for the Stegosaur, mightn’t they be just as useful to some offshoot of the Rhino family?
 

Hieru

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I hope the Links were intended as amusing distractions. Otherwise I would dispair at the idea of a Creationist contributing to a Fortean Times forum.

If I used the language I would like to use when refering to Creationism, I would probably be banned from this Forum, so I'll keep my opinions to myself on this issue.
 

Pietro_Mercurios

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Hieru said:
I hope the Links were intended as amusing distractions. Otherwise I would dispair at the idea of a Creationist contributing to a Fortean Times forum.

If I used the language I would like to use when refering to Creationism, I would probably be banned from this Forum, so I'll keep my opinions to myself on this issue.
It's almost tempting to portray myself as a Creationist, just to be extra annoying. :)

However, watching Dr Carl Baugh, of Creation Evidence.Org's programmes on TBN (Creation in the 21st Century), about the continued existence of dinosaurs, can be very entertaining. ;)
 

Hieru

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DougalLongfoot

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Hmm...can't be a stegosaur.
The Thagomizer is missing.
I only just found out that has been adopted as a genuine scientific term!
fs_thagomizer.jpg
 

Kondoru

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Come off it.

when did you see Dinosaurs round here?????

<digs into her kentucky fried chicken.>
 

ramonmercado

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Might be some saurs in these paintings.

The Invisible Graffiti of Angkor Wat

By Lizzie Wade Tuesday, May 27, 2014 - 8:15pm

Angkor Wat may be covered in graffiti—but don’t worry, it’s invisible. Built in the early 12th century, Cambodia’s architecturally iconic temple is known for its intricate carvings, some of them stretching nearly a kilometer in length. But most archaeologists believe that parts of the temple were once painted as well. So when scientists noticed faint traces of red and black pigment on the walls of several rooms in Angkor Wat, they snapped pictures with a bright flash and used a tool called decorrelation stretch analysis to digitally enhance the images.

Previously used to highlight subtle color differences in images of the martian landscape taken by NASA’s Opportunity rover, this type of analysis can reveal colors too faint or faded to be seen with the naked eye. When the researchers applied it to their photos of Angkor Wat, they found more than 200 images of boats, deities, buildings, and animals—like the elephants above (inset)—drawn on the walls throughout the temple, they report today in Antiquity. Most of the paintings are haphazardly arranged and appear to be graffiti left by visitors after Angkor Wat was first abandoned in 1431.

But one group of carefully drawn scenes, located in the highest tier of one of Angkor Wat’s towers, might be the remains of a 16th century restoration program, when the complex was transformed from a Hindu temple into a Buddhist shrine. The previously lost images could give archaeologists new insight into this little-known period in Cambodia’s history.
http://news.sciencemag.org/archaeology/ ... angkor-wat
 

Swifty

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I visited the ruins of Knossos in Crete a about 10 years ago and bought a reproduction coin in the gift shop because it had a trilobite on it .. well, it looked exactly like a trilobite anyway .. sadly I don't know where the coin is now ..

.. Some random pictures of Knossos:

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=knoss ... e&tbm=isch
 

blessmycottonsocks

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As for depictions of dinosaurs, has the Angkor Wat stegosaurus carving been debunked yet?
 
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Xanatic*

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It has. When you see it in context it's clear that it's back plates are some kind of foliage in the background and the creature itself likely a small hippo. There are other similar carvings with other animals.
 

PeteByrdie

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As for depictions of dinosaurs, has the Angkor Wat stegosaurus carving been debunked yet?
I don't think it's debunkable. It doesn't really look like a stegosaur in the head region, and it's been convincingly suggested the creatures back plates are just foliate filling of a blank space as can be seen elsewhere on the site, meaning this creature too is more likely to be a stylised representation of known animals (I believe chameleon was suggested for this one, too) than a stylised representation of a prehistoric beast (or why not some animal undiscovered by science?) Nevertheless, it's striking, and I've always liked it.

But if we're going to speculate about ancient peoples observing animals thought long extinct, the addition of feathers to dinosaurs opens up some lines. Could quetzelcoatl be a forest dwelling theropod? Some dinosaurs had beaks. Could the griffin have originated from people struggling to grapple with the appearance of a feathered quadruped (perhaps something like the protoceratops whose fossils are implicated in the myth's origin already)? Some dinosaurs had horse-like heads in general shape. Could they be responsible for the hippalectryon, about which we know so little? This is if we assume that, to ancient people, feathers were so closely associated with wings that it wouldn't have occurred to them such creatures couldn't fly. A couple of bonus suggestions, since they're clearly of more recent folkloric origin, the cockatrice, and those resplendent flying serpents that supposedly inhabited the woods around Penllyne Castle in Wales.

This is all nonsense, of course.
 
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oldrover

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No chameleons in S.E. Asia. So I doubt that'd be an explanation. But as has been said, it could be anything.
 
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PeteByrdie

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No chameleons in S.E. Asia. So I doubt that'd be an explanation. But as has been said, it could be anything.
I see from a quick Googling you're right. I don't know where I've heard that theory, but knowing chameleons probably evolved in Madagascar in the Indian Ocean clearly didn't think to question whether they'd spread to Southeast Asia.
 

oldrover

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Pete, I too came across the Angkor Wat chameleon explanation today. It's quite prominent. Albeit not likely.
 
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PeteByrdie

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Oh. I hadn't heard of that. I'm going to see if it's any different to Google. Thanks.

And Pete, I too came across the Angkor Wat chameleon explanation today. It's quite prominent. Albeit not likely.
It might be based on the idea that the people of Cambodia imported exotic creatures. As much of a stretch as it being an unknown animal which may now be extinct, without corroborating evidence, if you ask me.
 

lordmongrove

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None of the carvings remotely look like any kind of dinosaur. I'm with oldrover in that I think they look like chameleons (the lizards not the new wave band). The article itself is infantile bollocks of the first order. I've written a fair bit on supposed nneo-dinosaurs. There aren't any, except for ones that go 'tweet'. All down to mistaken identity and BS.
 
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Brig

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From pictures that I have seen of the so called Stegosaur carving, The plates do not appear to be any type of foliage. If its a coincidence it is a remarkable one. It was determined some time ago to be as old as other carvings in the vicinity. So it is not a recent construction. On the other hand how could anyone explain it? It looks remarkably like the Stegosaur, but that beasty went extinct over 70 million years ago. You can always argue the Coelacanth, but that was a fish. On the other hand if a brontosaurus type dinosaur (mokele mbembe) may still exist why couldn't a Stegosaur have existed long enough to empress the builders of Angkor Wat?
Of course we could just chalk it all up to overly romantic imaginings and the desire to see, some day, a real dinosaur.
 

oldrover

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From pictures that I have seen of the so called Stegosaur carving, The plates do not appear to be any type of foliage. If its a coincidence it is a remarkable one. It was determined some time ago to be as old as other carvings in the vicinity. So it is not a recent construction. On the other hand how could anyone explain it? It looks remarkably like the Stegosaur, but that beasty went extinct over 70 million years ago. You can always argue the Coelacanth, but that was a fish. On the other hand if a brontosaurus type dinosaur (mokele mbembe) may still exist why couldn't a Stegosaur have existed long enough to empress the builders of Angkor Wat?
Of course we could just chalk it all up to overly romantic imaginings and the desire to see, some day, a real dinosaur.

Brig, as far as we know the stegosaur went extinct 150 million years ago, it was a Jurassic animal. So, survival into the Cretaceous would be a significant find.

As to the dating of the carving, I'm not sure how you'd do that. I'm not sure there's a way to date engraving, other than wear patterns etc, but they can be reproduced I'm sure. Plus, who dated it?
 
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Brig

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Seventy Million or 150 Million years is rather moot is is not. ... That's a very long time for an animal to exist. However the Alligator dates back to the dinosaurs. ... The alligator is recognizable from his ancestor but considerably different. That's another factor against the Stegasaurus. The carving looks very much like the most common adaptation of the beast; however, one would think that after that long of a period it would be much changed. Still you have to wonder where the artist came up with the model. Did someone dig up a fossil Stegasaurus and surmise the rest? You do have to consider the time these carvings were made. Dinosaurs just weren't yet known] at least not for what they actually were.
 
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Xanatic*

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No, that 80 million year difference is important. Did you look at the other carvings?
 

Brig

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Actually, yes. The others I saw were typical of beasties, etc. Whether you're dead for 70 or 150 million years is really of no consequence because you've been dead one heck of a long time. Actually when I wrote 70 million years it was simply a reference to a very long time. Had we been discussing T-Rex or Triceratops the figure would have been closer to right. Yes I realize both of those dinosaurs lived up until 65 million years ago though I read recently that Triceratops may have survived the asteroid and gone a couple million years further. But like I said, when you're talking such huge expanses of time, in general conversation, what difference does it make?
 

EnolaGaia

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... Did you look at the other carvings?

That's one of the keys to determining just how remarkable the alleged 'stegosaur carving' may be. Those who tout the carving as a dinosaur typically only refer to the single carving in isolation, and the vast majority of photos posted on the subject show no more than that.

Here's a wider photo of the facade within which the pseudo-stego appears:

TaProhm-Carvings.jpg

The pseudo-stego is one of multiple figures within a vertical array, all of which are individually encircled and collectively interlinked by a sinuous belt- or ribbon-like form. These figures are components of a single set or array, as indicated by the rectangular border.

All the figures were clearly carved in 3D relief. The others in the photo pretty clearly present their central figure in front of some sort of background objects. The only way one may consider the apparent dorsally-located objects as stego-like plates is to 'collapse' them from the background onto the foreground figure - i.e., to treat the pseudo-stego's figure as a figural component conflicting with the overall array's otherwise consistent format.

The pseudo-stego isn't even the sole figure with a set of background objects following the line of the foreground figure's margin. Look at the figure directly beneath the famous one, and you'll see a similar line of more squared-off objects along the underside of the animal. Which prehistoric beast had blade-like plates extending from its belly?

Beyond that, it's only by taking a step back that you see a series of whatever-they-are lobed objects arranged along figural boundaries are found throughout the overall carving, including the background field within which the figures are carved.

In any case, the pseudo-stego doesn't look like any stegosaur or stegosaur fossil. The proportions and shape of the head are all wrong. Stegosaurs all had long, narrow, tapered heads that were notably small in relation to the body. No known stegosaur (or fossil thereof ... ) had the sort of large, bulky head depicted in the pseudo-stego figure.

IMHO the figure is a stylized mammal - most probably a rhinoceros (a beast actually living in the region at the time the carving was created). I've seen suggestions it may be a chameleon. Whatever its sculptor had in mind, it pretty clearly wasn't a stegosaur or an extrapolation from a stegosaur fossil.

Edit: Originally posted image now MIA; no archived version found. Equivalent image found and posted to replace it.
 
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oldrover

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As to a fossil being the inspiration, so far stegasours are only known from the U.S and Portugal, so it's unlikely I'd say

IMHO the figure is a stylized mammal - most probably a rhinoceros (a beast actually living in the region at the time the carving was created). I've seen suggestions it may be a chameleon. Whatever its sculptor had in mind, it pretty clearly wasn't a stegosaur or an extrapolation from a stegosaur fossil.

I doubt it's a chameleon, it's quite away out of their distribution range. And good point about the size of the head.

I agree it's a mammal of some sort, or a creature inspired by one. I have to say though, due to the depth of the carving and the way the 'plates' are distributed along its back, I think they are supposed to be part of the animal. Whatever it is.
.
 
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EnolaGaia

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...As to a fossil being the inspiration, so far stegasours are only known from the U.S and Portugal, so it's unlikely I'd say.

The genus specifically labeled Stegosaurus is known from North America and Europe, but ...

The more or less identically-structured stegosaurid genus Wuerhosaurus is known from East Asia (mostly China).
 
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