By Jamie Rivera Published 11/04/2015 06:41:00 | Views: 2731
The mysterious Steppe Geoglyphs of Kazakhstan. Picture: DigitalGlobe/ NASASource:Supplied

The space agency has released arresting satellite images of ancient geoglyphs in northern Kazakhstan, revealing patterns of squares, crosses and rings visible only from far above.

The oldest of the enormous designs, spotted by a Kazakh economist Dmitriy Dey on Google Earth in 2007 and now illuminated in sparkling detail, is thought to be 8000 years old.

After Dey spotted the first pattern, archaeologists visited the Kostanai region and found many more of the so-called Steppe Geoglyphs.

Ushtogaysky square, which is 287 metres on each side, is composed of 101 mounds, with a 400m line running diagonally through the square, Kazakhstani archaeologists recorded. They dated the nearby “Torgay swastika” to some time between the Bronze Age and Middles Ages, named another “Shiliysky square”, and noted many circles, squares and lines similar to the Nazca Lines in Peru scattered around the area.

After Neolithic artefacts were excavated close by, Dey suggested the older patterns could be linked to the Mahandzhar culture of 7000-5000BC. But scientists did not previously believe a nomadic population would stay in place long enough to create such complex structures, the New York Times reported. Their understanding of ancient societies could be set to unravel.

By Jamie Rivera 11/04/2015 06:41:00

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