The Great Pyramid of Giza is the sole survivor of the Seven Wonders of the World. An Arab proverb says that: "Man fears time, yet time fears the Pyramids", a reference to the fact that the pyramid has survived for about 4,500 years and, in that time, has lost a mere 10 metres off its incredible 145 metre height.
Composed of two million blocks of stone, each weighing more than two tonnes, this was not erected by George Wimpey and Co in a fortnight. For approximately 43 centuries it was the world's tallest man-made structure.
Or so we thought. Reports are emerging from Bosnia-Herzegovina of structures that make the pyramid of Giza look like a scale model (see http://www.bosnianpyramids.org/, http://www.bosnianpyramid.com/, and http://www.bosnian-pyramid.com/).
At 267 metres tall, the Pyramid of the Sun blows the Egyptian opposition into the weeds. If that wasn't enough, it is simply one of a number of pyramids located in the same region - there are also the Pyramids of the Sun, the Dragon and, most recently discovered, Love.
These revelations are not simply about who has the biggest bragging rights for historic civil engineering projects. Structures like these take colossal man power to create – estimates for a single Egyptian pyramid run into tens of millions of man hours.
Such a workforce means, in turn, huge logistical organisation – land cultivation, food transport, housing, water, waste disposal etc. The simple existence of these gigantic man-made structures in Europe means the entire history of the development of human civilization will have to be rewritten with Bosnia-Herzegovina at its centre.
All of which appears to be just fine by Semir Osmanagić who is at the centre of these discoveries. He is referred to on bosnianpyramid.com as "Bosnia's Indiana Jones" which is either a reference to the hat and boots that he affects or his extraordinary archaeological discoveries. Not a man who appears to eschew modesty, he is quoted as saying: "My discovery will change human history".
As might be imagined, this is a very big deal in Bosnia-Herzegovina where it forms the focus of a nightly reality TV show. We strongly recommend that you visit the web sites and that you examine the other evidence that is accumulating daily on the web, such as this video, where you can see, and weigh, for yourself the evidence that this is a man-made structure.
Of course, the cynical sceptics amongst you may feel that claims like these are so fantastic as to be unbelievable, but that is not the case. We believe the reason the claims are unbelievable is more simple; they are wrong.
How can we be so sure? We have been talking to Professor John Parker of Cambridge University, the director of the Botanic Garden and also Professor of Botany at St Catharine's College. He's actually travelled there and seen the evidence first hand.
El Reg: How did you come to visit the site?
Professor Parker: I visited the site in August this year as part of a visit to Sarajevo with one of the professors there. My colleague in Sarajevo invited me to come and see this phenomenon so we made our way to the site and climbed to the top of one of the hills which was being referred to as the Pyramid of the Sun. As we climbed the hill we passed, as you would expect, Nefertiti's café and stalls selling little models of the pyramids. I must admit I began to wonder where we were.
The top of the hill was being cleared and they were digging away the surface to the depth of about a metre, exposing what looked for all the world like concrete spilling down the slopes of the hill. These inclined, flat sheets consisted of aggregate in a matrix and I gathered that these were being put forward as a man-made phenomenon. It was quite impressive: large slabs, some of them up to 50 or 60 metres long. It was explained to me as man-made concrete that had been cast as slabs with shuttering between them. This is exactly the way in which, today, we cover large areas with concrete. We use shuttering to limit the size of the slabs and the spaces left when the shuttering is removed allow for expansion.
So, having seen that, we went across the valley to the Pyramid of the Moon, a slightly lower hill, and again we went through a mass of little stalls selling this time, Mayan step pyramid models.
In contrast to the Pyramid of the Sun, where the slabs of concrete lie parallel to the side of the hill, the material that makes up the Pyramid of the Moon lies in horizontal sheets. The flat sheets of exposed material have a sort of ripple effect on the top and the whole surface broken by regular lines into what looks like crazy paving with most of the fracture lines of the crazy paving roughly parallel to each other. It is broken up into rough rectangular blocks but laid so closely together that they look just as if they have been laid by human hand.