The day of December 17, 1903 will be remembered as the date of the first successful airplane flight. But were they really the first modern humans to build a flying machine?
No. The Montgolfier brothers had already built the hot air balloon and it flew over the skies of Paris in November 1783. And before them, Leonardo da Vinci had experimented with winged aircraft and one of his sketches shows the model for a helicopter. He also drew designs for a parachute and he might have thought up even more but some of his papers have been lost to history or are being kept secret.
But the origin of manned flight could be pushed even further back. This claim is supported by the discovery of several artifacts that have puzzled many mainstream historians. One of these artifacts is the Saqqara Bird.
It was discovered in 1898 during the excavation of the Pa-di-Imen tomb in Saqqara, Egypt and it has been dated to around 200 BCE. It definitely looks like a hawk, but its shape is also reminiscent of a modern airplane. It could have served a ceremonial role or it could be the toy of an elite child. Even if it is a scaled-down version of an airplane, no full-size one has ever been discovered in Egypt.
Discovered, however, were strange carvings in the Temple of Seti I at Abydos, Egypt. These carvings were discovered on a panel hidden under a newer one that had crumbled. They show what appears to be a helicopter viewed from the profile. When the photographs of these carvings surfaced, they caused a stir and some people became convinced that the carvings were evidence of ancient people possessing flight technology. Archaeologists have dismissed this theory, stating that the carvings were the result of the overlapping of two hieroglyphs and that the panel had been carved before.
Egypt is not the only area to have yielded artifacts of this kind. Strange golden sculptures have been found in Central America and along the coastal region of South America. Gold cannot be carbon-dated but the context of their discovery places them somewhere around 500-800 CE. Since their discovery, archaeologists have maintained that they are zoomorphs, sculptures that mimic animals.
However, some people have found this explanation unacceptable. The sculptures possess distinctly mechanical features such as delta wings, rudders and stabilizing fins, they even have a pilot seat. Coupled with the strange lines ( Nazca and others) that are only visible from above, this counts as evidence in the books of those who oppose conventional history.
The ruler of the Mayan city of Palenque, K’inich Janaab’ Pakal had an astonishing engraving on the lid of his sarcophagus. Surrounded by cosmological signs, he is seated in what appears to be a spaceship, operating controls with both his hands and feet. The image speaks for itself:
Another artifact is the Headless Spaceman, a small stone sculpture that has been kept hidden in the Istanbul Archaeology Museum. Ancient Astronaut Theory proponent Zecharia Sitchin managed to convince the Museum that this artifact is indeed genuine and just because our current view of ancient history does not include rocket-ships, we shouldn’t dismiss it as a forgery.
The sculpture looks like a cone-nosed rocket-ship with four engines in the back. In the middle sits a pilot, wearing what could be described as a “ribbed pressure suit” that also includes boots and gloves. Since the figure is missing its head, we can only speculate as to whether it had a helmet or not.
The artifact was found during excavations in Toprakkale, known in ancient times as Tuspa. Around 2,500 years ago, it was part of the Urartu Kingdom, better known as the biblical Kingdom of Ararat.
Last but not least, we have the vimana aircraft described in various Sanskrit epics. Some of them are described in great detail and were piloted by the gods. Are all these ancient airplane figurines just allegorical representations that served no purpose beyond metaphor? Are they nothing but hoaxes? Or did the ancients possess technology that modern society has only been using for a century? Maybe time will tell.