European Bronze Age Visitors In America
fromPre-Columbian Explorations to America
Note from the University of California, Riverside (UCR) website:
This site is a not-for-profit database whose mission is to facilitate the dissemination, and generation of historical knowledge related to human exploration and migration. Particular emphasis is placed on published accounts describing prehistoric interactions of peoples of the Old World with those of the Americas. Constructive criticisms of theories are included in an effort to extend the arguments in a worldwide forum. The material included is not part of the formal Archeology curriculum in The University of California.
Photographs before 1955 were taken with an Argus camera; thereafter either with a Zeiss Icon or Nikon digital camera, unless otherwise noted. The ancient originators of the art shown herein are posthumously respectfully acknowledged.
Summary of Discoveries of Dr. Barry & René Fell
NOTE: "Old Norse" and "Old Gaelic" as used by Fell may be equivalent to a Northern dialect of the Saharan language as discussed by Nyland, and most of the inscriptions in this section may also be transcribed with the Ogam/Igbo Dictionary: see Catherine Acholonu.
As of January 2020 there have been few implements found in the Americas that date from the Bronze Age (Please see Discussion). Nevertheless, there is considerable evidence of a voyage or voyages of a Bronze Age Scandinavian king, Woden-lithi, to North America around 1700 B.C. from texts found inscribed in the rocks at Peterborough, Ontario, Canada (Figs. 18 & 19 & MAP), and other North American sites. These texts, written in Teutonic and Norse tongues, used alphabets that have survived to the present in remote parts of the world. However, in Europe Roman script became the predominant alphabet around the time of Christ as part of the general occupation. They support the belief that Europeans during the Bronze Age were literate, educated people. Harvard Professor Barry Fell (1982) has attempted to translate the inscriptions to about October 2000. Expected widespread criticism of such new ideas flooded the archeological world (see Comments). Yet by the year 2005 there has emerged a revolution in American prehistory that may finally remove antiquated biases and enable concerted efforts at learning and dispelling myths about colonization in America (please refer to Nyland's accounts). The evidence points to the certainty that European colonists and traders have been visiting or settling in the Americas for thousands of years, have introduced their scripts, artifacts, and skills, and have exported abroad American products such as copper and furs. The voyages occurred just as the Iron Age was beginning, so that the explorers might have brought with them implements of iron instead of bronze (see Fig. 114), and most could have eventually rusted away.
Edo Nyland has examined the Peterborough petroglyphs and especially what Barry Fell considered Ogam, but he failed to see Ogam writing in it. Nyland considered that Fell took some isolated characters that look like Ogam, then assigned English letters to it, but none are connected into a sentence. If one looks at the Ogam inscriptions that Nyland works with, you see that they form a series of connected characters, a lineup of them, but that's not what Fell found. Furthermore, Nyland thought that Fell was using Gaelic to translate but Gaelic did not exist until about 700 AD. The early Gnostics used Basque exclusively. Nyland wishes that he could be more positive about Fell's work. As far as he can see his true strength is in transliteration, not translation. Indeed, Fell may have believed he was viewing an early form of Ogam when indeed it was an early form of Norse. Regardless of the terminology, Fell's translations appear to be accurate, as indeed Nyland accepted.
According to Fell, Woden-lithi's main purpose for visiting America was apparently to barter textiles with the Algonquian Indians in return for metallic copper ingots (Fell 1982). He left a detailed record of his visit at Peterborough where he established a permanent-trading colony. To critics who argued that there was no writing among the Scandinavians until about the time of Christ, Fell (1982) pointed to two alphabets as shown in Fig. 1. One alphabet, "ogam consaine" was employed by the ancient peoples of Ireland and Scotland (often referred to as Celts—see Celts). They were recorded and explained in detail by Irish monks during the Middle Ages. A detailed description of this writing was given in Barry Fell's books America BC and Saga America. The other alphabet, called "Tifinag", is the special way of writing of the Tuaregs, a race of Berbers living in the Atlas Mountains of North Africa. Both ogam consain and Tifinag use only consonants in nearly all words, leaving the vowels to be inferred, as do writers of Hebrew, Arabic and other ancient scripts. Sometimes, where doubt may exist as to the word intended, a vowel sign is added, or a pictograph, to help recognize the word (Fell 1982). [Ogam Script details]
It is apparent from evidence provided in the following text that Bronze Age Irish and Norsemen colonists in America showed strong feelings about their pagan gods and the power that they had over daily events. Therefore, the numerous inscriptions found in America on rocks, implements and bone regularly connected these gods with whatever the people were trying to show, whether it be gathering wool from wild sheep or recounting their travels. With his wide knowledge about Bronze Age mythology and religions in Europe, Professor Fell noted close similarities in the American inscriptions. He interpreted these as cultural extensions from Europe, following colonization by explorers crossing the Atlantic in ancient times. (Pleases refer to Figs. 20, 21, 22, 23, & 24 for more illustrations to this section). As of 2005, we have come to recognize the ancient language as Saharan from which all other Indo-European languages were derived.
The following text reconsiders the detailed account by Professor Barry Fell in Bronze Age America, 1982,.with new knowledge accumulated since its publication. Although Fell's reference to Celts often includes peoples of both Ireland and Scotland, I have generally used the word Ancient Irish for both (Please see Celts).
The Bronze Age Alphabets
These alphabets enable an examination of the famous Bronze Age sites where rock-cut inscriptions are preserved. One famous site occurs at Hjulatorp, Sweden, the name meaning "Wheel Village." There exist numerous Neolithic or early Bronze Age rock carvings that resemble chariot wheels and others that look like disks or globes (Figs. 3). Fell (1982) discussed the significance of this site as follows:
Examine the fernlike inscription on the lower part of the rock face, beneath some circular carvings. There is little difficulty in recognizing this as ogam consain, and that the letters are as shown on Fig 3. They spell K-UI-G-L, which, as all Norse- and German-speaking readers will immediately recognize, is just an archaic way of spelling the general Teutonic root that means a ball or globe. Glance now to the upper right, where, beside the same circular images, we now find a series of engraved dots that match letters in the Tifinag alphabet. The letters are, as shown in Fig. 4, K-G-L--, again, just an archaic rendering of the same word, this time in a different alphabet. There are more of the Tifinag letters. Look at the chariot wheels ..." in Fig. 5. "Beneath them are letters that spell W-H-L-A, obviously an archaic spelling of the Old Norse <= Saharan?> word for wheel. Farther to the right we find a Tifinag word spelling K-L. Now the writer of that last word may have been an ancient Swede, already casting out from his pronunciation of kugl that internal g, for whereas Danes and Germans retain the internal consonant, the Swedes now spell and pronounce kugl as kula.
But, it may appear, there is not supposed to be any writing at all on these Bronze Age monuments! Well, that was not Fell's opinion, and he suspected that it would begin to occur to the reader that perhaps our earlier ideas may have erred on these matters. Now let us take a look at another Bronze Age carving, first recorded by Dr. G. Halldin in the 1949 volume of the yearbook published by the Swedish Sjöfartsmuseum. It shows a ship of the characteristic Bronze Age form, with the keel projecting fore and aft below the upward-turned bow and stern pieces. Along the upper and lower borders of the....ship (Fig. 6a) we see two lines of Tifinag letters, and a third line curves around the lower edge of the rock slab. In the Bronze Age (and also among the Berbers in modern times), when two or more lines of text occur, they are read as if they were a continuous "tape:": that is, with each line alternating in direction, so that no break occurs in the line of symbols. Here we read the top line from left to right, the next line from right to left. The letters prove to be K-GH H-W-L. Now take a glance at an American rock inscription, also depicting ships of the Bronze Age type (Fig. 6b). This particular carving, at Peterborough, Ontario, can be visited easily by Canadians living in that area, As can be seen, the letters K-GH occur at the beginning of the first line, too, which also is to be read from the left to right, just as in the Swedish example. Reference to any Old Norse <= Saharan?> or Old Icelandic dictionary will disclose that kuggr, often anglicized in Viking times as cog, is an Old Norse word meaning a seagoing trading ship. On the Swedish example the next word, H-WL, can readily be recognized, since it still occurs in all Norse tongues, as meaning whale, or, in the older sense, any sea monster or leviathan. Thus the Swedish example is telling us that the monument is dedicated to "The seagoing ship Leviathan." As for the Canadian examples, merely note that kuggr is only one of several Old Norse words for ships that we find represented by Tifinag letters beside carvings of Bronze Age ships.
Returning to Sweden, we now visit at Backa, Brastad, another site, considered by Swedish archaeologists, to be Neolithic (around 2000 BC). The word baca does not occur in modern speech, but in Old Norse <= Saharan?> it meant, according to the Oxford Dictionary of Old Icelandic, "a kind of blunt-headed arrow." The rock inscription that occurs at Baca depicts just such a blunt-headed arrow, together with an image of the sun god and human figure, apparently dead, plus some letters of the Tifinag alphabet (Fig. 7). These, if read from right to left, yield the words S-L B-K-S, solbakkas, translating as "of the sun's blunt arrow." The precise reference may be obscure, but it seems clear enough that the letters are indeed Tifinag, and that the subject under discussion is indeed the blunt arrow that is depicted below the letters and that gave its name to the place where the inscription occurs.
The examples cited so far come from the eastern parts of Sweden and comprise very simple texts, using only a few letters of the Tifinag alphabet. If we transfer our attention to the rock inscriptions found on the southwest coast of Sweden, immediately adjacent to Oslo Fjord and along the strip of coast to the north of Göteborg, we find much more extensive and varied inscriptions at localities in the Bohuslän region. Here the texts are longer and more interesting and, in many cases, they show the same obvious relationship to the accompanying carvings of men, animals, and ships. What have hitherto been incomprehensible "lines of dots" now assume quite clearly and unmistakably the character of commentaries in a very ancient kind of Norse language that was evidently spoken during the Bronze Age. Since there was at that time no differentiation of the ancestors of the future Angles and Saxons from the general stock of Teutonic speakers that later gave rise to the tribes that spread from Denmark to England, herein shall be used the terms Norse and Ancient Norse for the language that is represented in these Bronze Age inscriptions. it was Fell's impression that English, German, and other Teutonic languages, including the Norse or Scandinavian tongues, may all be traced back to the Bronze Age dialect that is the subject of this account.
The inscriptions in western Sweden seem to fall broadly into three main categories. These are (1) short didactic statements that appear to be school lessons for young scribes, very much resembling the Irish (noted as Celtic) school inscriptions reported from British Columbia in Fell's book Saga America, (2) prayers for the safety of ships at sea and for victory in impending attacks upon foes, and (3) narrative material depicting and identifying important events, such as the pagan festivals with their associated rituals and entertainments. In deciphering these Tifinag texts, from which the vowels, of course, are usually lacking, Fell used as his reference the known vocabulary of Old Norse and Old Icelandic. However, in many cases dialects such as Old English or Old High German could equally well be used as the reference guide, with the same translation resulting, and with little more than the substituted vowels to distinguish the various dialects. Since the vowels are lacking we are left without any certain indication as to which of the Old Teutonic tongues is the closest to the speech of these ancient Norsemen people, and it is possible that all are equally related, as was suggested above. But to provide a uniform nominal vocabulary Fell selected Old Norse or Old Icelandic as the base.
Any literate community has to provide a means of instructing the young in the arts of reading and writing; otherwise, the skills would die out. It appears that in Bronze Age times the schoolmasters used much the same kind of didactic material for their lessons as did teachers in later ages. The subject matter ranges from simple identifications of depictions of objects of daily life to more sophisticated proverbs and adages, each illustrated by appropriate pictorial carvings.
Fig 8 illustrates two inscribed petroglyphs from the Bohuslän district that suggest that they were intended for younger readers. The first imparts a moral lesson on cooperation; the second is of the familiar grade-school type, in which people are related to their daily environment, in this case two fishermen who are "on the water." Fig. 9 shows more of the same type of illustrated statement, in which a warrior holds his buckler in such a manner as to show how the word is spelled. A bull and a cow are introduced, each illustrating how its name is spelled; and the sun god carries the image of the sun, thus showing how the letter s (for sol, sun) originated.
Fig. 10 could also be used in teaching youngsters, though the context from which these ship details are taken suggests that it is a record of a naval episode. The ships' names are given, sometimes (as in the upper example) with a helpful hieroglyph added-- the vessel is called the Serpent, and a serpent is shown between the letters that spell the word.
Prayers for Ships at Sea
Fig. 11 shows part of an inscription at Vanlös, Bohuslän, in which a winding strand of Tifinag letters weaves through a series of carvings of Bronze Age ships. The decipherment, as given in the caption, shows that the work was intended as some kind of charm to enable seagoing cogs to remain together, with a fair wind, and to arrive at their destination all at the same time. Fig. 12 shows two charms or prayer inscriptions intended to cause fish to take the hook. The upper illustration has the Tifinag letters laid out in a vertical column; it is a rebus simulating a fishing line with a hook at the lower end. Analogous inscriptions in Irish (noted as Celtic) dialects commonly form rebus arrangements of ogam letters, so we must conclude that texts of this type were part of the whole Norsemen culture during the Bronze Age and were by no means confined to Scandinavia.
Figs. 13, 14, 15, & 16 illustrate a portion of a series of petroglyphs that occur on one rock face at Fossum, Bohuslän, all depicting various aspects of the events that occurred during the celebration of the Thorri festival, held during January and February. Fig. 13 shows the symbol of the festival, a sign made up of reduplicated letters of the name Thorri, resembling a thunderbolt symbol. There follows a scene in which the trumpeters, the lur-blowers, hold these curved instruments to their mouths, and an appropriate text tells us that this began the day's ceremonies. Below, in Fig. 13 we see a scene from what appears to be a hockey game appropriately labeled "ball game." Dueling with maces is the subject of Fig. 14, the competitors each wearing a sword, all as usual in this period displaying their phalluses. Fig. 15 shows petroglyphs of sorcerers performing feats of juggling, the balls that they throw into the air being the letters of the inscription itself. Fig. 16 depicts hunting with the bow and arrow and an archery contest held in connection with the Thorri festival. Notable in these texts is the use of ship symbols to provide punning words that suggest the actual word intended by the consonants or even that replace spelled-out words. The captions to these figures explain the points of interest.
With these introductory examples, it is now appropriate to leave the Swedish scene, where our readers have perhaps some questions to pose to the archaeologists of Stockholm. As for us here in the Americas, we too have matters to settle with our own archaeologists.
But the epigraphers, who study ancient inscriptions, have some explaining to do. How is it that a Berber alphabet can occur in Scandinavian Bronze Age contexts? Why does an Irish (noted as Celtic) script also occur there? Why do both scripts (and may others) occur as rock-cut inscriptions in the Americas? These are matters that have been the topic of Fell's earlier books and research papers. A few brief answers may be inserted here, for readers new to the subject.
In regard to ogam, it is easy to demonstrate the untruth of the claim mentioned above that it is a local London invention dating only from the fourth century AD. If those who make this claim (British archaeologists) should take the time to visit the numismatic department of the British Museum they would see examples of the silver coinage of the Aquitanian Gauls, struck in the second century BC and lettered in ogam consaine. They would also see Iberian and Basque imitations of these, lettered in ogam. If they should look at the artifacts excavated from the Windmill Hill site occupied around 2000 BC by the builders of Stonehenge, they would see ogam consaine engraved on these, too.
As regards the Tifinag alphabet of the Berbers, ..... Fell's thesis was that Tifinag is in fact an Ancient Norse script, and that it was taken to North Africa, probably in the twelfth century BC, when the pharaoh Ramesses III repelled an attack by Sea Peoples (who appear in his bas-reliefs) to be Norsemen (See Nyland's account). The invaders took refuge in Libya, and it is suspected that the Old Norse <= Saharan?> runes went with them, and survived as the Tifinag. During Fell's work in North Africa he met Berbers who had no tradition of the origin but who were obviously Europoid, with fair hair, blue, gray, or hazel eyes, and typical European features.
And as for how European skippers could have reached the Americas in the early Bronze Age, their own spokesman, King Woden-lithi himself, may be left to handle that question. he does so in the words he had inscribed on limestone in Canada 3,500 years ago, during the five months he spent in Ontario. And so for why Europe chose to forget about America, that is a matter primarily for European historians to explain, but it should be pointed out that the earth's climate became colder at the end of the Bronze Age, when the north polar icecap came into being [See Climate]. Sailing westward by the northern route became hazardous until the amelioration of climate that took place just before the onset of the Viking period.
Perhaps, when the study of rock inscriptions in Scandinavia is pursued more widely, new evidence may be discovered that could help to fill in some of the missing pieces of the record of humans upon the high seas. The increasing frigidity of the North Atlantic as the warm Bronze Age ended would not have been the only factor that might have tended to discourage transatlantic trading.
There were also changes occurring in the pattern of commerce in Europe, as the Bronze Age advanced, and these, combined with gradual exhaustion of available upper-level deposits of metallic copper in Canada, probably turned the attention of Scandinavian skippers more to the south and less to the remote lands across the Atlantic.
By 1200 BC, when the Scandinavian Bronze Age was reaching its peak, traders from the Carthaginian settlements in Spain and Tunisia were reaching the Baltic lands. They brought with them another alphabet, the Iberian, itself a development of the Phoenician way of writing. .Scandinavian inscriptions now assumed the character of commercial documents, engraved on small pieces of bone, written in the Iberian script, and recording business transactions. It was probably at this epoch that Scandinavian leaders decided that the time had come to discard the old Tifinag letters of King Woden-lithi's day and to modernize their business records by adopting the new Iberian script. So only, the religious inscriptions preserved the Tifinag in the northern lands. On the southern shores of the Mediterranean, roving Norsemen raiders also preserved their Tifinag, which ultimately became the inheritance of the Berber peoples.
The alphabet may not have been the only bequest these Norsemen made to their successors who settled in the Atlas Mountains. When Fell was working in Libya he noticed among Berbers some words still in use that had familiar Norse sound, made even more recognizable now that we can see how King Woden-lithi would have written these same words." (see Table I (Fig. 17) for examples).
A Royal Visitor
On the basis of evidence gained from translations of Ogam script in North America, Fell (1982) proposed the following hypothesis: "Some seventeen centuries before the time of Christ a Norse man king named Woden-lithi sailed across the Atlantic and entered the St. Lawrence River. He reached the neighborhood of where Toronto now stands, and established a trading colony with a religious and commercial center at the place that is now known as Petroglyphs Park, at Peterborough. His homeland was Norway, his capital at Ringerike, west of the head of Oslo Fjord. He remained in Canada for five months, from April to September, trading his cargo of woven material for copper ingots obtained from the local Algonquians (whom he called Wal, a word cognate with Wales and Welsh and meaning "foreigners."). He left behind an inscription that records his visits, his religious beliefs, a standard of measures for cloth and cordage, and an astronomical observatory for determining the Norsemen calendar year, which began in march, and for determining the dates of the Yule and pagan Easter festivals. having provided his colonists with these essentials, he sailed back to Scandinavia and thereafter disappears into the limbo of unwritten Bronze Age history. The king's inscription gives his Scandinavian title only and makes no claim to the discovery of the Americas nor to conquest of territory. Clearly, he was not the first visitor to the Americas from Europe, for he found that the Ojibwa Algonquians were already acquainted with the ancient Basque syllabify. When Woden-lithi set sail for home, an Ojibwa scribe cut a short comment into the rock at the site, using the ancient Basque script and a form of Algonquian still comprehensible today, despite the lapse of time (See Nyland's account)
Fell (1982) then continued with evidence supporting such sweeping claims. He suggested, "The primary physical evidence comprises a series of inscriptions cut in the Tifinag and ogam consaine alphabets, using an early form of the Norse tongue, scattered around the outer margins of the petroglyph site at Peterborough [Ontario, Canada] (Fig. 18 & Fig. 19). Except for the central sun god and moon-goddess figures and certain astronomical axes cut across the site, the numerous inscriptions are the work of later Algonquian artists, who used King Woden-lithi's inscription as a model for their own, more conspicuous, carvings. The site has been since 1972 under official government protection, and instructions for reaching it are given by the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources in various guide booklets and pamphlets available to the general public. Readers of this book will find most helpful the ministry's book Petroglyphs Provincial Park, Master Plan; also valuable for its treatment of the Algonquian art at the site is the work by Joan M. and Romas K. Vastokas entitled Sacred Art of the Algonkians (Mansard Press, 1973). The latter work is meticulous in the accurate portrayal of the inscriptions, in their present eroded state, though the authors did not then recognize the inscribed alphabets or record them as such. The important fact is that professional anthropologists such as the Vastokas team found and recorded the inscriptions and reported that they must date back to a period before the historical occupation of the region by the Hurons and later by Iroquois. In other words, the inscriptions could not be modern features, and must date back to the era of Algonquian occupation, which came to an end some five centuries before 2017.
Joan and Romas Vastokas recognized apparent Scandinavian and Bronze Age features in the art style. They pointed out that the ships depicted in the inscription are shown in the European manner, with animal figure heads and stern tailpieces, features totally unknown to Algonquian, or indeed in any American Indian, art. They, and other archaeologists, noticed the strange similarities of the central sun-god figure. and associated motifs to corresponding solar deities of Europe, especially the Bronze Age petroglyphs of Scandinavia. Other characteristic Scandinavian features that their photographs and drawings record are such elements of Norsemen mythology as the maiming of the god of war by the Fenrir wolf....., the conspicuous short-handled hammer, Mjolnir, of Thunor (Thor of the ), and Gungnir, the spear of Woden....., both of which were imitated many times over by the Algonquian artists who later occupied the site. Thus, the purely objective reports made by the Vastokases who sought only to record what they discovered, without attaching any interpretation other than that appropriate for Algonquian art, have an added value and importance for us now, for they observed the material as it was uncovered from the soil and placed it on permanent record in their photographs, charts, and descriptions. As a result of the initial discoveries, the whole site was set aside as a public part and protected by an enclosure.
Thus, the primary evidence still exists and is open for public inspection under circumstances that prevent the possible vandalization of the site. The only disturbing feature is that, since the inscriptions were exposed to the air, after removal of the covering soil that had protected them, the action of frost and acid rain has caused a gradual deterioration of the surface of the limestone. Unless steps are taken to impregnate the bedrock with a stabilizer, such as silicone, the precious record may soon melt away into unreadable markings, as part indeed already had before the site had been found.
The actual discovery should be noted here. It occurred on May 12, 1954, and was made by three geologists, Ernest Craig, Charles Phipps, and Everitt Davis, in the course of fieldwork on mining claims. The following day, "Nick" Nickels, a photographer-journalist of the Peterborough Examiner, visited the site, and so began the first modern records of it. Paul Sweetman of the University of Toronto undertook the first research at the site in July 1954, recording nearly a hundred petroglyphs. Sweetman's report indicated a possible age as great as 3,500 years or as young as 400 years. His upper limit, 3,500 years, is in agreement with the epigraphic evidence as given in this book. Tens of thousands of visitors now come to the site each year, using the access road and other facilities that have been erected for their benefit. it has become a major center of archaeological interest for the whole of North America, and all Americans are grateful to the Canadian authorities for having seen to it that the ancient petroglyphs are protected yet open to all visitors.
The Vastokases, like most archaeologists in North America, felt obliged to explain all American petroglyphs as being the work of native Amerindian artists. Despite their, and others' perception of the similarities to Scandinavian petroglyphs of the Bronze Age, the idea that any connection might have existed between North America and Scandinavia in the Bronze Age, some 3,500 years ago, seemed preposterous. So they were faced with remarkable parallels, yet they elected to explain them as no more than chance similarities brought about by a shamanistic view of the sky as a kind of sea on which the sun and the moon sailed their ships to cross the heavens each day.
In treating the inscriptions in this way, they were following the example of other distinguished anthropologists and archaeologists who had investigated North American petroglyphs. The leading researcher during the last several decades had been Professor Robert Heizer of the University of California. He was vehement in his rejection of all theories that America had been visited in pre-Columbian times by voyagers from Europe, Africa, or elsewhere, and he chose to view all American petroglyphs as the products of Amerindians. He did take account of age-determination techniques, such as those dependent on carbon-dating of materials found in caves where petroglyphs occur and the evidence provided by the oxidation of rocks, especially in dry climates such as eastern California, Nevada, and Arizona. These methods enabled Heizer to set dates of up to five thousand years ago for some petroglyphs. As for me, at the time when the Ontario petroglyphs were discovered, Fell had just completed a comprehensive Scandinavian journey and had visited many of the famous inscriptions of Sweden and Denmark, though he was still a long way from recognizing the Tifinag alphabet at any Bronze Age petroglyph site beyond the shores of North Africa.
Fell's subsequent work on Tifinag led to the gradual decipherment of the ancient language of Libya and, after various Libyan scholars visited me at Harvard, Fell was invited to lecture on the Tifinag inscriptions at the universities of Tripoli and Benghazi. Just before leaving for North Africa in 1977, Fell had received from Otto Devitt the first of what were to be a continuing series of photographs he made for me of the petroglyphs at Peterborough. Although he could see that the site included Tifinag letters, the words they formed seemed to have no discernible connection with the language of ancient Libya, and he was forced to put the slides aside while undertaking other assignments.
In the interim Fell read some of Heizer's reports on the petroglyphs of eastern California and Nevada, and recognized that they included Tifinag and Kufi (early Arabic). A particularly striking case is the petroglyph in Owens Valley, California, that depicts the entire zodiac, in the form it had before the third century BC, together with a Kufi inscription explaining that the New Year is determined at the time of the vernal equinox, when the sun enters the constellation of the Ram. One of Dr. Fell's former Harvard students, Dr. Jon Polansky, was now doing research at Berkeley, and he made the acquaintance of Professor Heizer and showed him the decipherment Fell had done on his Owens Valley petroglyphs. Consequently Professor Heizer invited me to visit him; this came about in May 1979. We became friends and, putting aside his former opposition to the notion of pre-Columbian visitors, Bob Heizer now carefully checked each element of the decipherment and confirmed that Fell had rendered his original published diagrams correctly tin the version in which In inserted the sound values of the Kufi signs. We planned a joint publication, but illness prevented him from accompanying me into the desert that year. Instead, he arranged for one of his former Berkeley students, Dr. Christopher Corson, to take me to some of the inscription areas. Dr. Corson, an archaeologist in the Bureau of Land Management, ahs the best knowledge of petroglyph sites in northern California and northwest Nevada. He led a party that included John Williams, Jon Polansky, and me, together with Wayne and Betty Struble and their son Peter. Bob Heizer planned to take part in Fell's next field trip, but to his great regret he passed away, struck down by the illness that had already prevented his participation in the 1979 fieldwork. Fell was obliged to publish the Owens Valley zodiac without the benefit of his contribution, though the illustrations of the paper had been checked by him for accuracy and had his approval.
Dr. Heizer's contribution to American petroglyph studies had been immense, and Fell's colleagues and he knew that a significant point had been reached when Heizer recognized the true nature of the Owens Valley zodiac and opened his mind to a new view of American prehistory in which pre-Columbian visitors and colonists would now play a role. Heizer, an archeologist and anthropologist, filled an intermediate position between those archeologists who devote their research to excavation of ancient sites and epigraphers, those linguists who give their energies to the decipherment of ancient inscriptions.
By 1979, the same season in which Heizer and Fell had begun to influence each other, the epigraphers of Europe had already begun to analyze by work on ancient inscriptions in America, and soon authoritative publications began to appear, giving strong support and conformation. Professor Pennar Davies, a leading Welsh scholar, and in America, Professor Sanford Etheridge, editor of Gaeltacht (an Irish-language publication), had both written in support of Fell's finding ogam inscriptions in America. In Spain, the leading Basque scholar, Dr. Imanol Agiŕe, advised me that he too confirmed Fell's reports on Basque inscriptions in Pennsylvania, dating from about the ninth century before Christ. In 1980 the volume he contributed to the Gran Enciclopedia Vasca (Great Basque Encyclopedia) contained letter-by-letter analyses of Fell's papers, and in a technical paper published in 1982 Agíre acknowledged that his decipherment of the ancient Basque syllabary was correct. These and other published papers, such as those of the Swiss linguist Professor Linus Brunner, provided competent scholarly approval of our American studies on the alphabets and syllabaries that are represented at the site in Peterborough. Their opinions, therefore, together with the detailed analyses that they have published, must be taken into account when some archaeologists, both in America and Britain, attempt to discredit the research on American inscriptions. The claims of the latter that epigraphers in America are deluded by forgeries, or even forge the alleged inscriptions themselves, have to be dismissed as ignorant remarks made without personal knowledge of the scripts or the language involved, and generally without any knowledge of the sites at which the inscriptions occur.
From the information given herein it is obvious that the petroglyphs at Peterborough cannot be forgeries, and that they are ancient. From the information given previously and those that follow, it is easy for any person who so desires to check the statements and conclusions, and as in previous books that Fell has written. Only by such methods can we eventually persuade Americans to realize that American history extends far into the past, and that America and Europe interacted through trade and cultural contact for over three thousand years before Columbus made his first voyage.
Since Fell's first book on ancient voyages to America, some important advances have been made to archaeological research bearing out that topic. In New England James P. Whittall and members of the Early Sites Research Society have discovered and excavated a site (a disk barrow) that was first occupied seven thousand years ago. Some of the skeletons show the characteristics of Europeans, yet their age by carbon dating is at least 1,600 years. One of the skulls matches closely the skulls of the ancient Irish. These facts have been determined by an anthropologist, Professor Albert Casey, whose research has been devoted to skull and bone characteristics of Old World peoples. His computer is programmed to recognize Old World characteristics in New World skulls not being discovered. The tumuli of northeastern America show great similarities to those of Europe. The radiocarbon dates indicate similar ranges to time. The artifacts excavated from American burial sites, sometimes in actual contact with the skeletons of their presumed former owners, have been discovered in some cases to have inscriptions carved upon them, in ogam and Basque script; to Dr. William P. Grigsby we owe this observation, based on his own extensive collections of artifacts from the southeastern states.
We are faced, therefore, with what amounts to conclusive evidence that the artifacts (including written inscriptions) of European peoples of the Bronze Age are found at American archaeological sites, and with these artifacts skeletons are occasionally found that conform to Europoid criteria. The recognition and confirmation of the inscriptions are due to epigraphers who have published their findings and who, in most cases, teach courses in linguistics or epigraphy at reputable universities. Thus, whether or not we can comprehend the sailing techniques of Bronze Age peoples, the fact seems inescapable that Bronze Age Europeans reached North America. Fell's personal view was that the mild climate of the Bronze Age permitted navigation to take advantage of the westward-flowing currents and westward-blowing winds of the polar regions, and thus made the natural northern route to North America much easier to use than is the case today, when polar ice intrudes and savage weather occurs [See Climate]. Fell had sailed that route and appreciated its discomforts. They would have been much less severe in the Bronze Age, while the attraction of North America for Scandinavian skippers would have been much enhanced by the availability of copper in metallic form, at a time when Europe was demanding copper for bronze alloys on a larger scale than ever before or since......
Agiŕe, Imanol. Vinculos de la Lengua Vasca
Allen. Derek 1978. An Introduction to Celtic Coins. British Museum Publ., London. 80 p.
de Azukue's, Resurrección María. 1969. Diccionario Vasco-Español-Frances, Bilbao
de Retana, José María Martín. 1966. Gran Enciclopedia Vasca, Bilbao [Editorial La Gran Enciclopedia Vasca]
Engler, H. Rudolf. 1962. Die Sonne als Symbol; der Schlüssel zu den Mysterien. Küsnacht, Helianthus-Verlag. 302 p., illus. 26 cm.
Epigraphic Society's Occasional Publications. 1981. Epigraphy Confrontation in America
Fell, Barry. 1974. Life, Space and Time: A course in Environmental Biology. Harper & Row, NY. 417 p.
Fell, Barry. 1974. An Introduction to Polynesian Epigraphy with Special Report on the Moanalla Stele known as Pohaku ka luahine. Polynesian Epigraphic Soc.
Fell, Barry. 1976. America BC. Ancient Settlers in the New World. Pocket Books, NY. 312 p.
Fell, Barry. 1982. Bronze Age America. Little, Brown and Co., Boston, Toronto. 304 p.
Fell, Barry. 1983. Saga America. A Startling New Theory on the Old World Settlement of America before Columbus. Times Book, NY. 392 p.
Fell, Barry. 1985. Ancient Punctuation and the Los Lunas text. The Epigraphic Society. p. 35-43.
Fell, Barry. 1989. America B.C.: Ancient Settlers in the New World, Revised Edition. Pocket Books, NY. (revised ed.)
Geir, T. Zoega. 1932. English-Icelandic Dictionary. Bokaverslun Sigurdar Kristjanssnar, Reykjavik. 712 p.
Gran Enciclopedia Vasca
Heizer, R. F. & M. A. Baumhoff. 1962. Prehistoric Rock Art of Nevada and Eastern California. Univ. of Calif. Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London. 412 p.
Oxford Dictionary of Old Icelandic
Vastokas, Joan M. & Romas. 1973. Sacred Art of the Algonkians: A study of the Peterborough Petroglyphs. Mansard Press. 1694 p.
Vastokas, Joan M. 1984. Native and European Art in Ontario 5000 BC to 867 AD. Toronto, Canada, and Gallery of Ontario. 48 p.
Zoega's, Geir T. 1910. Dictionary of Old Icelandic. Oxford University Press
Some material presented will contain links, quotes, ideologies, etc., the contents of which should be understood to first, in their whole, reflect the views or opinions of their editors, and second, are used in my personal research as "fair use" sources only, and not espousement one way or the other. Researching for 'truth' leads one all over the place...a piece here, a piece there. As a researcher, I hunt, gather and disassemble resources, trying to put all the pieces into a coherent and logical whole. I encourage you to do the same. And please remember, these pages are only my effort to collect all the pieces I can find and see if they properly fit into the 'reality aggregate'.
I've come to realize that 'truth' boils down to what we 'believe' the facts we've gathered point to. We only 'know' what we've 'experienced' firsthand. Everything else - what we read, what we watch, what we hear - is what someone else's gathered facts point to and 'they' 'believe' is 'truth', so that 'truth' seems to change in direct proportion to newly gathered facts divided by applied plausibility. Though I believe there is 'truth', until someone celestial who 'knows' all the facts parts the heavens and throws us a scroll titled "Here Are ALL The Facts And Lies In The Order They Happened," I can't know for sure exactly what "the whole truth' on any given subject is, and what applies to me applies to everyone.
~Gail Bird Allen
Never in your long ascendancy will you lose the power to recognize your associates of former existences. Always, as you ascend inward in the scale of life, will you retain the ability to recognize and fraternize with the fellow beings of your previous and lower levels of experience. Each new translation or resurrection will add one more group of spirit beings to your vision range without in the least depriving you of the ability to recognize your friends and fellows of former estates.
Princess Bride 1987 Wallace Shawn (Vizzini) and Mandy Patinkin (Inigo Montoya)
Vizzini: HE DIDN'T FALL? INCONCEIVABLE.
Inigo Montoya: You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.
And here is mystery: The more closely man approaches God through love, the greater the reality -- actuality -- of that man. The more man withdraws from God, the more nearly he approaches nonreality -- cessation of existence. When man consecrates his will to the doing of the Father's will, when man gives God all that he has, then does God make that man more than he is.
"And do you not remember that I said to you once before that, if you had your spiritual eyes anointed, you would then see the heavens opened and behold the angels of God ascending and descending? It is by the ministry of the angels that one world may be kept in touch with other worlds, for have I not repeatedly told you that I have other sheep not of this fold?"
But we know that there dwells within the human mind a fragment of God, and that there sojourns with the human soul the Spirit of Truth; and we further know that these spirit forces conspire to enable material man to grasp the reality of spiritual values and to comprehend the philosophy of universe meanings. But even more certainly we know that these spirits of the Divine Presence are able to assist man in the spiritual appropriation of all truth contributory to the enhancement of the ever-progressing reality of personal religious experience—God-consciousness.
When you are through down here, when your course has been run in temporary form on earth, when your trial trip in the flesh is finished, when the dust that composes the mortal tabernacle "returns to the earth whence it came"; then, it is revealed, the indwelling "Spirit shall return to God who gave it." There sojourns within each moral being of this planet a fragment of God, a part and parcel of divinity. It is not yet yours by right of possession, but it is designedly intended to be one with you if you survive the mortal existence.
And the greatest of all the unfathomable mysteries of God is the phenomenon of the divine indwelling of mortal minds. The manner in which the Universal Father sojourns with the creatures of time is the most profound of all universe mysteries; the divine presence in the mind of man is the mystery of mysteries.
To every spirit being and to every mortal creature in every sphere and on every world of the universe of universes, the Universal Father reveals all of his gracious and divine self that can be discerned or comprehended by such spirit beings and by such mortal creatures. God is no respecter of persons, either spiritual or material. The divine presence which any child of the universe enjoys at any given moment is limited only by the capacity of such a creature to receive and to discern the spirit actualities of the supermaterial world.
Paradise is the eternal center of the universe of universes and the abiding place of the Universal Father, the Eternal Son, the Infinite Spirit, and their divine co-ordinates and associates. This central Isle is the most gigantic organized body of cosmic reality in all the master universe. Paradise is a material sphere as well as a spiritual abode. All of the intelligent creation of the Universal Father is domiciled on material abodes; hence must the absolute controlling center also be material, literal. And again it should be reiterated that spirit things and spiritual beings are real.
Culture presupposes quality of mind; culture cannot be enhanced unless mind is elevated. Superior intellect will seek a noble culture and find some way to attain such a goal. Inferior minds will spurn the highest culture even when presented to them ready-made.
True liberty is the associate of genuine self-respect; false liberty is the consort of self-admiration. True liberty is the fruit of self-control; false liberty, the assumption of self-assertion. Self-control leads to altruistic service; self-admiration tends towards the exploitation of others for the selfish aggrandizement of such a mistaken individual as is willing to sacrifice righteous attainment for the sake of possessing unjust power over his fellow beings.
How dare the self-willed creature encroach upon the rights of his fellows in the name of personal liberty when the Supreme Rulers of the universe stand back in merciful respect for these prerogatives of will and potentials of personality! No being, in the exercise of his supposed personal liberty, has a right to deprive any other being of those privileges of existence conferred by the Creators and duly respected by all their loyal associates, subordinates, and subjects.
There is no error greater than that species of self-deception which leads intelligent beings to crave the exercise of power over other beings for the purpose of depriving these persons of their natural liberties. The golden rule of human fairness cries out against all such fraud, unfairness, selfishness, and unrighteousness.