Paracas is located in the Pisco Province in the Inca Region on the Southern coast of Peru. Home of the ground breaking discovery in 1928 by Julio Tello of a massive graveyard containing tombs filled with the remains of individuals with elongated skulls, now known as the famous Paracas Skulls.
They are approximately 3000 years old, and initial DNA analysis of them has revealed that they may not have come from humans, but from a completely new species, according to Paracas Museum assistant director, researcher and author Brien Foerster. Here is the apparent quote from the geneticist who did the testing
“Whatever the sample labeled 3A has came from – it had mtDNA with mutations unknown in any human, primate or animal known so far. The data are very sketchy though and a LOT of sequencing still needs to be done to recover the complete mtDNA sequence. But a few fragments I was able to sequence from this sample 3A indicate that if these mutations will hold we are dealing with a new human-like creature, very distant from Homo sapiens, Neanderthals and Denisovans. I am not sure it will even fit into the known evolutionary tree. The question is if they were so different, they could not interbreed with humans. Breeding within their small population. they may have degenerated due to inbreeding. That would explain buried children – they were either low or not viable”
It’s always been thought that the skulls were a result of cranial deformation, where the head is bound or flattened to achieve the shape. Many authors state that the time period to perform this shaping was approximately 6 months to 3 years, but the practice is no longer performed, which makes it hard to really know. According to Forester:
“From the doctors that I have spoken to, they have said that you can alter the shape of the skull but you cannot increase the size of the skull. The skull is genetically predetermined to have a certain volume.”
This is why these skulls are such a mystery, because of their cranial volume, which in some cases is 2.5 times larger than a conventional human skull. Again, it’s well known that cranial deformation changes the shape of the skull, it’s been done by ancient cultures before by binding the head between two pieces of wood, or binding in cloth, but this does not change the volume and cause elongation like we see with the Paracas skulls.
“As I have said, deformation can alter shape, but not the volume of bone material, and certainly not twice as much. We are dealing with 2 different phenomena: elongation through binding, and elongation via genetics. The Paracas skulls are the largest found in the world, but from what root race stock would they have originated? To suggest that natural elongation was the result of hydrocephaly or some other clinical condition is ridiculous.”
Brien Foerster has just revealed the preliminary results of the analysis. He reports on the geneticist's findings:
It had mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA) with mutations unknown in any human, primate, or animal known so far. But a few fragments I was able to sequence from this sample indicate that if these mutations will hold we are dealing with a new human-like creature, very distant from Homo sapiens, Neanderthals and Denisovans.
The implications are of course huge. “I am not sure it will even fit into the known evolutionary tree.”
Enter David Hatcher Childress, a well known promoter of some very Bad Archaeology indeed. In a 2012 book, The Enigma of Cranial Deformation: Elongated Skulls of the Ancients, co-written with Brien Foerster (described as a “Canadian-Peruvian anthropologist” by Amazon, although it would be more accurate to describe him as a tour operator)
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