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With the palm and the toromiro virtually gone, there was considerably less rainfall as a result of less condensation. [39] From that point on, the island's population slowly recovered. For other uses under the name, see, Articles and topics related to Easter Island, List of resources about traditional arts and culture of Oceania. Officially, Chile purchased the nearly all encompassing Mason-Brander sheep ranch, comprised from lands purchased from the descendants of Rapa Nui who died during the epidemics, and then claimed sovereignty over the island. [41], Following the 1973 Chilean coup d'état that brought Augusto Pinochet to power, Easter Island was placed under martial law. However, as in the rest of mainland Chile, the official language used is Spanish. Live Science is part of Future US Inc, an international media group and leading digital publisher. Despite numerous attempts, the surviving texts have not been deciphered, and without decipherment it is not certain that they are actually writing. Anywhere from 180 to 250 men were required for pulling, depending on the size of the moai. [33], One of the highest-quality examples of Easter Island stone masonry is the rear wall of the ahu at Vinapu. Easter Island statues are known for their large, broad noses and strong chins, along with rectangle-shaped ears and deep eye slits. [14], According to Barthel (1974), oral tradition has it that the island was first named Te pito o te kainga a Hau Maka, "The little piece of land of Hau Maka". Although Easter Island is famous for the large monumental Moai statues which adorn Easter Island, often called the Easter Island heads, Rapa Nui is also home to highly sophisticated rock art carvings and paintings with unique motifs. The drug is also known as rapamycin, after Rapa Nui. A 5 ton replica was moved by a group of 30 people. According to legend, a chief named Hotu Matu’a, having learned of Rapa Nui from an advance party of explorers, led a small group of colonists, perhaps no more than 100 people, to the island. Approximately 100 meters away from the great ahu lay the remains of a much more rustic ahu that does not have any statues. Moai statues are massive megaliths at Easter Island, and these are what this island is famous for. The mountain is part of the Sala y Gómez Ridge, a (mostly submarine) mountain range with dozens of seamounts, formed by the Easter hotspot. The god responsible for creating humans, Makemake, played an important role in this process. With this technique, brute force could be applied and rapid, safe moai statue transportation would be possible. Though, according to oral legends the Rapa Nui people made the statues. Out of these 111 Rapa Nui, only 36 had descendants, and all of today's Rapa Nui claim descent from those 36. Like its Chilean counterpart it probably took close to 100 years to reach adult height. This is what my grandfather Tori 'a Papaveri said to me: Pē nei i kī mai ai tō'oku tupuna ko Tori 'a Papaveri: To make the moai hat reach its place, a pile of rocks was built. The island got its name from a Dutch explorer, Jacob Roggeveen. A series of devastating events killed or removed most of the population in the 1860s. [46], In 2018, the government decided to limit the stay period for tourists from 90 to 30 days because of social and environmental issues faced by the Island to preserve its historical importance. The lowest temperatures are recorded in July and August (minimum 15 °C or 59 °F) and the highest in February (maximum temperature 28 °C or 82 °F[59]), the summer season in the southern hemisphere. Initially, these ceremonial platforms were not to exceed a length of 20 meters, but during the most classical period of Easter Island’s history, some ahu were over 100 meters long and held more than 10 statues from different periods. Some 50 of the statues were re-erected in modern times. The island's Polynesian name is Rapa Nui, and the indigenous people are also known as Rapa Nui. The western and northern portion of the island belonged to the Tu'u, which included the royal Miru, with the royal center at Anakena, though Tahai and Te Peu served as earlier capitals. According to Carl Friedrich Behrens, Roggeveen's officer, "The natives presented palm branches as peace offerings." In 1871 the missionaries, having fallen out with Dutrou-Bornier, evacuated all but 171 Rapa Nui to the Gambier islands. By the 18th century, islanders were largely sustained by farming, with domestic chickens as the primary source of protein.[31]. Famine followed the burning of huts and the destruction of fields. By 1838, the only standing moai were on the slopes of Rano Raraku, in Hoa Hakananai'a in Orongo, and Ariki Paro in Ahu Te Pito Kura. The idea that they were disembodied heads may have come from the fact that some of the statues have gotten buried up to their necks in soil. The Rapa Nui carved the heads and front side of the statues while they were lying on the ground, then completed the backs after uprighting the stone statues. An English translation of the originally Dutch journal by Jacob Roggeveen, with additional significant information from the log by Cornelis Bouwman, was published in: Andrew Sharp (ed. [102], Makemake with two birdmen, carved from red scoria. When the slave raiders were forced to repatriate the people they had kidnapped, carriers of smallpox disembarked together with a few survivors on each of the islands. The Maunga Orito obsidian was used to make the "mataa" spearheads. NY 10036. The island was first scouted after Haumaka dreamed of such a far-off country; Hotu deemed it a worthwhile place to flee from a neighboring chief, one to whom he had already lost three battles. [19]:60–64, Four years later, in 1774, British explorer James Cook visited Easter Island; he reported that some statues had been toppled. Easter Island (Rapa Nui: Rapa Nui, Spanish: Isla de Pascua) is an island and special territory of Chile in the southeastern Pacific Ocean, at the southeasternmost point of the Polynesian Triangle in Oceania. [3] This was exacerbated by the loss of land birds and the collapse in seabird populations as a source of food. Matā, or obsidian (volcanic glass) tools, is by far the most common archaeological trace of the Rapa Nui culture. Easter Island is served by Mataveri International Airport, with jet service (currently Boeing 787s) from LATAM Chile and, seasonally, subsidiaries such as LATAM Perú. Theorists have supported this through the agricultural evidence of the sweet potato. A pukao of red scoria stone from the quarry Puna Pau would in later years sometimes be placed on the head of the statue to represent the long hair the desceased had, which was a sign of mana; a kind of mental power. [61] There is significant temperature moderation due to its isolated position in the middle of the ocean. The northwest sector of Rano Raraku contains reddish volcanic ash. However, most married a Rapa Nui spouse. [52], In January 2011, the UN Special Rapporteur on Indigenous People, James Anaya, expressed concern about the treatment of the indigenous Rapa Nui by the Chilean government, urging Chile to "make every effort to conduct a dialogue in good faith with representatives of the Rapa Nui people to solve, as soon as possible the real underlying problems that explain the current situation". These events enveloped the statues and gradually buried them to their heads as the islands naturally weathered and eroded through the centuries. Salmon sold the Brander Easter Island holdings to the Chilean government on 2 January 1888, and signed as a witness to the cession of the island. O te korohu'a ko Huhu Kahu i vānaŋa ai ki tō'oku matu'a poreko: To put the hats on top of the head of the moais, men would pile rocks and pushed the hat over the piled rocks until it reached the head. When a ceremony took place, "eyes" were placed on the statues. [citation needed] Before the arrival of humans, Easter Island had vast seabird colonies containing probably over 30 resident species, perhaps the world's richest. Poike and Rano Kau exist on the east and south slopes of Terevaka, respectively. There are around 1000 statues, up to 86 tons tons in weight and 10 m in height, though average is around half of that. The most visible element in the culture was the production of massive moai statues that some believe represented deified ancestors. Easter Island shares with Juan Fernández Islands the constitutional status of "special territory" of Chile, granted in 2007. Receive news and offers from our other brands? Moai, or mo'ai are the name of the Easter Island statues. In 1995, UNESCO named Easter Island a World Heritage Site, with much of the island protected within Rapa Nui National Park. Tuberculosis, introduced by whalers in the mid-19th century, had already killed several islanders when the first Christian missionary, Eugène Eyraud, died from this disease in 1867. Easter Island, together with its closest neighbour, the tiny island of Isla Sala y Gómez 415 kilometres (258 mi) farther east, is recognized by ecologists as a distinct ecoregion, the Rapa Nui subtropical broadleaf forests. Easter Island is considered part of Insular Chile. There the marae is the unpaved plaza before the ahu. [99] Other notable ahu with moai are Ahu Akivi, restored in 1960 by William Mulloy, Nau Nau at Anakena and Tahai. Easter Island is one of the world's most isolated inhabited islands. The Hanga O Teo embayment is interpreted to be a 200 m high landslide scarp. The closest inhabited land is the Pitcairn Islands, located about 1,200 miles (1,900 km) to the west. This hot spot produced the Sala y Gomez ridge which spans East of Easter Island as the Pacific Ocean opened through the East Pacific Rise. According to some theories, such as the Polynesian Diaspora Theory, there is a possibility that early Polynesian settlers arrived from South America due to their remarkable sea-navigation abilities. In the case of Rapa Nui, recovered plant seed shells showed markings of being gnawed on by rats. The Moai got their names from their native dinosaurs. They used smaller statues such as the half-built ones on the top part of the Rano Raraku, and more rustic ahu, which are testimonies of a time of decadence. The houses at the ceremonial village of Orongo are unique in that they are shaped like hare paenga but are made entirely of flat basalt slabs found inside Rano Kao crater. First they only dragged a statue on the ground, one side at a time. [citation needed] The nearest continental point lies in central Chile near Concepción, at 3,512 kilometres (2,182 mi). None were left standing by the time of the arrival of the French missionaries in the 1860s. The validity of this treaty is still contested by some Rapa Nui. The statues found mounted on ahu do not have wide bases, and stone chips found at the sites suggest they were further modified on placement. EY & Citi On The Importance Of Resilience And Innovation, Impact 50: Investors Seeking Profit — And Pushing For Change. A large extinct palm, Paschalococos disperta, related to the Chilean wine palm (Jubaea chilensis), was one of the dominant trees as attested by fossil evidence.

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