Skip to comments.New Mexico's Mystery Stone
Posted on 01/09/2006 6:45:23 PM PST by Muleteam1
It is a mystery in the desert hills near Los Lunas, New Mexico. It has puzzled experts for more than 50 years. It has been referred to by many different names -- Ten Commandments Rock, Mystery Rock, The Los Lunas Decalogue Stone. It is most commonly known as the Mystery Stone.
Mystery Stone is located at the base of Hidden Mountain, on New Mexico state trust land, about 16 miles west of Los Lunas. It is a boulder weighing an estimated 80 to 100 tons and is about eight meters in length. Nine rows of 216 characters were chiseled at a 150 degree angle into the north face. The characters resemble ancient Phoenician script. Like the rest of Hidden Mountain, the boulder is volcanic basalt. The site was first documented in 1936, when visited by Anthropology Professor Frank Hibben, from the University of New Mexico. Any other reported visits prior to that year are unconfirmed.
See remainder of story at the Source URL above.
(Excerpt) Read more at nmstatelands.org ...
this is the original recipe for Twinky's
I thought it was the Colonel's chicken recipe.
The inscription has been translated by the Epigraphic Society as follows:
I (am) Jehovah [the Eternal] Eloah [your God] who brought you out of the land of Mitsrayim [Mizraim or the two Egypts] out of the house of bondages. You shall not have other [foreign] gods in place of (me). You shall not make for yourself molded (or carved) idols [graven images]. You shall not lift up your voice to connect the name of Jehovah in hate. Remember you (the) Sabbath to make it holy. Honor your father and your mother to make long your existence upon the land which Jehovah Eloah [the Eternal your God] gave to you. You shall not murder. You shall not commit adultery (or idolatry). You shall not steal (or deceive). You shall not bear witness against your neighbor, testimony for a bribe. You shall not covet (the) wife of your neighbor and all which belongs to your neighbor.
Are you serious or Joking?
Are ya sure it's not part of the Madrid Crystal Crowd ?
Good point, lol, this is the first I had seen of it.
Quick before this ends up in chat with the burning mouse
That's where I lost my homework!!!!
I will get there some day
The letters look like backward and upside down and laying
on their side English characters. It also seems odd that a serious carver wouldnt use straight lines create a quality carving. All the phonecian tablets Ive seen the characters
were set on a line and there was no separation between the
characters. This looks like a hoax!
Yawn. another one like the Heavner,Ok runestones and the Minnesota runestones.
Possibly a drunk norwegan wrote it about 100 years ago. probably says something like this in rune writing...
Here lies the body of Lester Moore.
Four shots from a .44
And no Moore.
I used to live in Los Lunas and I never heard about it. In fact, the only thing I did hear were gun shots every night. LOL I only lived there for a year and as soon as my lease was up I moved 150 miles away. I'm soooo glad to be out of that town! Too many gangs and illegals for me.
I ain't no see no mystery. I see a rudimentary prank.
I don't know about dating rock's, but some people said my first wife was as dumb as a rock
Anyway, have you ever dated a rock?
Unless those very clear inscriptions are somehow protected from the weather (overhgang, cave, etc.), I'm inclined to think the same.
It's an older code, skipper. I can't make it out.
Not much doubt it is a hoax or just someone enjoying themself. It just doesn't look that old.
Nope but in my younger days I have rocked on a date.
I smells a hoax, an old one, but a hoax nevertheless. Comparison to the phoenician alphabet shows a decided lack of some of the more difficult to write characters and an abundance of the easy ones. Perhaps the good professor Frank Hibben was a self-styled expert on ancient Phoenicia looking for a legacy? At any rate, it's not far from here, so I may take a little day trip down there. Or as has been mentioned earlier, it may very well be the elusive original recipe.
Hat Creek Cattle Company & Livery Emporium.
Captain Augustus McCrae and Captain W. F. Call Proprietors.
For Rent Horses -- For Sale Cattle.
We Don't Rent Pigs -- Goats Neither.
Uva Uvam Vivendo Varia Fit.
"I used to live in Los Lunas"
You did right for coming back to the States.
'Once was man from Nantucket...'
The last line clearly says you can "Biggie Size" any order for 99 cents.
Just a guess.
I never attended UNM but that name sure sounds familiar. There was a UNM prof. who investigated the supposed Roswell crash site but I don't think this was him.
Photo Dan Raber, Loudon TN
The Los Lunas Inscription is an abridged version of the Decalogue or Ten Commandments, carved into the flat face of a large boulder resting on the side of Hidden Mountain, near Los Lunas, New Mexico, about 35 miles south of Albuquerque. The language is Hebrew, and the script is the Old Hebrew alphabet, with a few Greek letters mixed in. See Cline (1982), Deal (1984), Stonebreaker (1982), Underwood (1982), and/or Neuhoff (1999) for transcriptions and translation, and Deal (1984) for discussion and photographs of the setting.
George Moorehouse (1985), a professional geologist, indicates that the boulder is of the same basalt as the cap of the mesa. He estimates its weight at 80 to 100 tons, and says it has moved about 2/3 of the distance from the mesa top to the valley floor since it broke off. The inscription is tilted about 40 degrees clockwise from horizontal, indicating that the stone has settled or even moved from its position at the time it was inscribed. (The above photograph was taken with a tilted camera.)
In 1996, Prof. James D. Tabor of the Dept. of Religious Studies, University of North Carolina - Charlotte, interviewed the late Professor Frank Hibben (1910-2002), a retired University of New Mexico archaeologist, "who is convinced that the inscription is ancient and thus authentic. He reports that he first saw the text in 1933. At the time it was covered with lichen and patination and was hardly visible. He was taken to the site by a guide who had seen it as a boy, back in the 1880s." (Tabor 1997) At present the inscription itself is badly chalked and scrubbed up. However, Moorehouse compares the surviving weathering on the inscription to that on a nearby modern graffito dating itself to 1930. He concludes that the Decalogue inscription is clearly many times older than this graffito, and that 500 to 2000 years would not be an unreasonable estimate of its age.
The inscription uses Greek tau, zeta, delta, and kappa (reversed) in place of their Hebrew counterparts taw, zayin, daleth, and caph, indicating a Greek influence, as well as a post-Alexandrian date, despite the archaic form of aleph used. The letters yodh, qoph, and the flat-bottomed shin have a distinctively Samaritan form, suggesting that the inscription may be Samaritan in origin. See Lidzbarski (1902), Purvis (1968).
Cyrus Gordon (1995) proposes that the Los Lunas Decalogue is in fact a Samaritan mezuzah. The familiar Jewish mezuzah is a tiny scroll placed in a small container mounted by the entrance to a house. The ancient Samaritan mezuzah, on the other hand, was commonly a large stone slab placed by the gateway to a property or synagogue, and bearing an abridged version of the Decalogue. Gordon points out that prosperous Samaritan shipowners were known to live in Greek communities at the time of Theodosius I circa 390 A.D., and proposes that the most likely age of the Los Lunas inscription is the Byzantine period.
If Los Lunas is indeed a Byzantine Samaritan inscription, it may be significant that the sixth century historian Procopius reports that the Byzantine Emperor Justinian I (r. 527-565 A.D.) undertook a massive persecution of the Samaritans in particular, which
... threw Palestine into an indescribable turmoil. Those, indeed, who lived in my own Caesarea and in the other cities, deciding it silly to suffer harsh treatment over a ridiculous trifle of dogma, took the name of Christians in exchange for the one they had borne before, by which precaution they were able to avoid the perils of the new law. .... The country people, however, banded together and determined to take arms against the Emperor ... For a time they held their own against the imperial troops; but finally, defeated in battle, were cut down, together with their leader. Ten myriads [100,000] of men are said to have perished in this engagement, and the most fertile country on earth thus became destitute of farmers. ( Chapter 11, and in particular screens 52-54.)
Procopius elsewhere states that Justinian was responsible for the deaths of no less than three trillion (sic!) persons, so perhaps his estimate that 100,000 Samaritans were killed in this uprising may be a little inflated. Nevertheless, a persecution such as this, and perhaps this very one, may have been the impetus behind the Los Lunas Inscription. Pummer (1987, p. 4) reports that the uprising in question occurred in 529 A.D., and that "after the Muslim conquest of Palestine from 634 A.D. on, the Samaritan swere reduced even further in their numbers through massacres and conversions. Particularly under the Abbasids [750-1258 A.D.] their sufferings increased greatly." Although the Samaritans have survived into the 21st century, they were clearly more numerous and prosperous in the first millenium A.D. than the second. Further evidence of a Hellenistic or Byzantine influence on Los Lunas is provided by Skupin (1989). He analyzes the orthographic errors of the Los Lunas text itself, and concludes that it appears to have been written by a person whose primary language was Greek, who had a secondary, but verbal, comprehension of Hebrew. He writes of the inscriber,
He used the consonant [aleph] as if it were a vowel, like the Greek alpha, even though this clashes with the Hebrew orthographic system .... He confounded [qoph] and [caph] as a Philhellene who only knew kappa might do, and was sufficiently removed from Hebrew to be unaware that he had made an irreverent slip thereby. Most amazingly, he 'heard' macrons, the drawling long vowels that are structurally and semantically important in Greek ... and felt compelled to indicate them even if he was not exactly sure of how it's done (and rightly so, since in Hebrew they're insignificant).... His word order suggests a scriptural tradition related to a Greek version produced in Alexandria, Egypt, as does his spelling; and finally, he gives inordinate prominence to the words 'brought you out of Egypt.'
None of this proves anything. Until confirmation comes from another quarter, all we can really do is provide a clearer idea of the stone's contents for those who are intrigued by it, and give those who reject the inscription's authenticity ... a deeper appreciation of what they have rejected.
Yet more evidence of Greco-Samaritan interactions is provided by Prof. Reinhard Pummer (1998, p. 29), who reports that "Ancient literature hints that Samaritan synagogues may have been located in Rome and Tarsus between the fourth and sixth centuries C.E. Short inscriptions in Samaritan and Greek script found in Thessalonica and Syracuse may have come from Samaritan synagogues in these cities during the same time period. Apparently, the Samaritans flourished in the Diaspora." One Samaritan synagogue in Palestine, at Sha'alvim, in Judea N.W. of Jerusalem, simultaneously bears religious inscriptions in Samaritan letters and secular inscriptions in Greek. Another at Tell Quasile in Tel Aviv shows considerable Greek architectural influence. (Ibid., p. 30.) In his book, Pummer reports that the Samaritan wedding service even today contains a few words of Greek, and that a Samaritan deed of divorce from Egypt, dating to 586 A.D., is written in Greek (1987, p. 19). A Samaritan inscription in the nethermost diaspora might therefore well exhibit some Greek attributes.
It should be noted, however, that Pummer himself (personal communication, Aug. 31, 1998) does not believe that the Los Lunas inscription could be Samaritan. First, in Verse 8, the Los Lunas text follows the Masoretic (standard Jewish) text by saying "remember the Sabbath day to keep it holy," whereas the Samaritan text always says "preserve the Sabbath day to keep it holy." Second, the Samaritans added a clause to the tenth commandment calling for a temple to be built on Mt. Gerizim, but this clause is absent in Los Lunas. And third, although an inscription in Greek language written in Samaritan letters is known, he is not aware of Greek-style letters ever appearing in Samaritan inscriptions.
Sure does look like a hoax. I chiseled 1787 into a huge boulder and added the initials of a famous pioneer who would have been in the area at the time. Should have buried some indian trinkets. That always grabs the historians.
It's Jive writing giving directions to an after hours club in Detroit.
about 10-15 minutes south of Albuquerque.
That is true with ancient Greek and Hebrew also.
This looks like a hoax!