Lost Civilizations


Multiple ancient civilizations have vanished seemingly overnight, often at their height of power. There have been various explanations offered as to why this occurred, such as environmental factors or internal conflicts. Discover the best info about Historical Secrets.

Minoan civilization in present-day Crete collapsed following a volcanic eruption in 1500 BCE, and many experts speculate that internal pressures may have led to its decline over time.


Cahokia was home to an extraordinary Mississippian mound-building culture characterized by hundreds of large earthen structures, an expansive town center, and a two-mile-long palisade; Monk’s Mound served as its central building and hosted religious leaders during ceremonies held there. To maintain such an elaborate urban center, all its mounds, plazas, woodhenges, and other public works needed regular repairs or reconstruction, or else whole neighborhoods might have had to be demolished to make way for new development projects.

Archaeologists know that Cahokians had an exquisite religious and spiritual understanding of their world despite having no written records to go by. Their city precinct was planned around calendrical and cosmological referents such as the sun, moon, earth, water, and netherworld; particularly striking was sunrise during an equinox when visiting their central plaza was particularly stunning.

Cahokia residents cultivated an early version of maize as their staple crop, along with squash, sunflower, and other domesticated plants; fished for wild birds, deer, and turtles to eat meat; yet by 1200 A.D., Cahokia had already seen its population begin to dwindle and two centuries later its collapse was complete; archaeologists don’t yet understand why; some experts speculate climate changes, war or disease might have played a part.

Easter Island

Easter Island in the Pacific stands as a testament to one of humanity’s great mysteries: islanders created a number of gigantic stone statues known as Moai that remain unexplained as experts speculate over when and why these moai were made or even how they may have been transported and assembled.

One theory suggests that these statues were an act of religious protest or self-mutilation by their creators; their intention may have been to represent mortality symbolically through these statues; however, this doesn’t account for why the statues were moved and erected, nor does it explain why so many died shortly after Moai were completed.

Another theory suggests that island residents were adversely impacted by environmental change, losing the capacity to produce food due to changes in climate. Furthermore, scholars believe they became susceptible to diseases brought in by European visitors.

Historians and archaeologists have spent decades trying to make sense of Easter Island’s mysterious changes, with mixed results. Historians have examined accounts written by first European visitors while archaeologists excavate buildings from ancient settlements; scientists study its plants, animals, geology, and geography, while linguists believe there exists a written language known as Rongorongo that historians and archaeologists cannot yet decipher.

Khmer Empire

The Khmer Empire covered much of what is today Cambodia and was centered on the city of Angkor, which eventually developed into a vast temple complex (6.50). Khmers were predominantly agricultural people who worked their land to grow rice as well as sugar palm trees, fruits, and vegetables – often living near waterways in villages near waterways where irrigated fields would flood during wet season floods – for which their agriculture produced rice paddies on irrigated fields that often became inundated.

The Empire was led by several kings who united various smaller kingdoms into one entity. Of particular note was Jayavarman VII, widely recognized as one of history’s great builders who oversaw the construction of both Angkor Wat and Bayon temples as well as creating an extensive network of canals and roadways across his kingdom.

Khmers were an extremely literate people; however, they did not keep any written records of their history. What historians know of Khmer culture comes mostly from inscriptions and relief carvings placed on temples, as well as accounts from Chinese travelers who visited this region.

The Khmer Empire flourished for nearly 600 years until its defeat by Ayuthaya of Thailand in 1431 CE. Their decline could be attributed to shifting religious beliefs from Hinduism to High Buddhism or ecological factors like floods and drought that damaged large irrigation systems that kept Angkor productive.

Ancestral Puebloan

Ancestral Puebloans lived for millennia in stone and adobe villages built along canyon walls, often at higher elevations for defensive purposes, from tiny family pit houses to grand pueblos situated at higher elevations for defensive reasons. Furthermore, apartment-like complexes of multistory multipurpose buildings with open plazas and viewsheds were constructed – supporting hundreds to thousands of people at any one time. Engineers created water reservoirs that collected both groundwater and runoff to meet their needs; furthermore, they possessed extensive knowledge of celestial science, which would allow them to understand cosmic science better.

At first, Ancestral Puebloans engaged in hunting and gathering. But as farming became more widespread, these people began living in more permanent communities with permanent pit houses or grander stone and adobe structures such as those seen today at Mesa Verde National Park (in southwestern Colorado), Chaco Culture National Park in Utah (southeastern Utah), Kayenta National Park and Hovenweep (north Arizona). These structures eventually culminated into cliff dwellings, which can still be seen today at these national parks (Mesa Verde National Park) and Chaco Culture Kayenta National Parks). These structures can still be seen today at Mesa Verde National Park (southwestern Colorado), Chaco Culture Kayenta National Park (southeastern Utah), Kayenta National Park (Utah), Kayenta National Park (Utah), Kayenta and Hovenweep National Parks) (in Colorado), Kayenta (Utah), Kayenta (Utah), Hovenweep). These can still be seen today at Mesa Verde Mesa Verde Chaco Culture Kayenta Hovenweep National Parks within these regions: southwestern Colorado Colorado, southeastern Utah, Kayenta (Kayenta), Kayenta (Kayenta), Kayenta (Uta), Kayenta)and Hovenweep) National Parks(in Arizona), Hovenweep)and Hovenweep). These can still be seen today). Hovenweep National Parks can still be visited. Hovenweep National Parks to Hovenweep, as well as Hovenweep, still exist today!). HovenWeep) Hovenweep) Hovenweep); and Hovenweep) amongst Verde, Colorado/ Utah/Kyenta/HovenWeep National Parks as, well as Hovenweep as well as Hovenweep National Parks are seen today and Hovenweep in north Arizona/ Arizona, which contain Hovenweep National Parks so many, of course. Hoven Weep! P, which offers National parks today. Hovenweep/Hovenweep national ParksVERDE!P!. Hovenweep national Park. Hovenweep national Park!Weep! Hovenweep, both National parks provide. Hovenweep for National parks to Hovenweep, which host these present within HovenWeep! Hovenweep/ ChaCO culture KayENTAlv WeeP!. HovenweeP in Colorado/ Utah/ Hovenweep etc…

While Ancestral Puebloans shared certain cultural traits, such as their heavy dependence on cultivable foods and the construction of pueblos, each culture displayed unique features from west to east. Anthropologists use the terms Ancestral Puebloan, Hohokam, Patayan, and Mogollon to designate archaeological cultural units; these units do not refer to prehistoric sociocultural entities or peoples but instead define similarities and differences among architecture, ceramics, social organization systems, and religion in material culture.

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