Things that made me laugh today, and some that have intrigued me.
Friday, March 28, 2014
The Hidden Dinosaur of Ta Prohm Temple
Stegosaurs roamed Europe and North America during the late Jurassic period, roughly 150 million years ago. Judging from a small carving in an Angkor temple, one or two may have spent some time in Cambodia, too — in the 12th century AD.
A carving on the wall of the Ta Prohm temple, built in the late 1100s, bears more than a passing resemblance to the round-backed dinosaur. Since a 1997 guidebook first pointed out the strange carving, creationists have held up the Ta Prohm dinosaur as proof that humans and stegosauruses once co-existed in Cambodia. There is even a replica of the carving on display at the Creation Evidence Museum in Glen Rose, Texas.
While the carved animal does seem to have a row of plates along its spine, it's not the most compelling argument for revising the prehistoric timeline. The bas relief could be a depiction of a rhino or chameleon, with the "plates" forming a stylized version of foliage. But the curious carving adds another element of intrigue to the gorgeously ruined Tomb Raider temple. Visit Atlas Obscura for more on the dinosaur of Ta Prohm.