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Mysterious mammoth bone structure

Date: 18 March 2020 Tags: Miscellaneous


A bizarre 41-foot-wide (12.5-meter) circular structure made entirely of wooly mammoth bones was recently unearthed in Russia.



Scientists believe that the structure is 25,000 years old. Whether it served as a dwelling, a ritualistic hotspot, or some other purpose is yet unclear.



  • Hunter-gatherer societies obtained food by hunting, fishing, scavenging, and gathering wild plants and other edibles. It’s believed that before the advent of agriculture, our ancestors lived a nomadic lifestyle, moving in groups of a few dozens of people, consisting of several family units.

  • But this doesn’t mean that they mindlessly wandered the world. When food was plentiful in an area, it was common for hunter-gathers to stay put in the same place, employing techniques to store food and defending their territory against rival groups.

  • The structure was found at an archaeological site, known as Kostenki 11, which is located by the Don River, close to the Russian city of Voronezh.

  • Radiocarbon dating suggests that the site is around 25,000 years old, making it one of the oldest mammoth bone structures in history.

  • scientists have been discovering mammoth bone structures  at Kostenski 11 since the 1950s. They’re all circular and flanked by a series of large pits, which may have been used to store food or dump waste.

  • A total of 51 lower jaws and 64 individual mammoth skulls were used to construct the walls, according to the investigation carried out by the team of researchers.

  • In addition to the mammoth bones, the researchers were able to find evidence of charcoal and burnt bones, stone tool fragments, and soft plant tissue that hint at the diet consumed during those times.

  • The structure might have served as a dwelling for a small tribe or as a food stockpiling warehouse. The charcoal, for instance, suggests that fires were started inside the circular structure, providing solace against the harsh ice age nights.

  • The structure perhaps also possessed a ritualistic significance. The Russian researchers speculate that it may have served as a shrine or monument honoring woolly mammoths. There is no evidence to back this assertion, which remains speculation at this point.

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