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Dinosaurs In Literature, History and Art: Dinosaurs in the Temple; The Angkor Wat Stegosaur; the Bi-Pedal Dinosaur and Giant Creature at Umm El-Kanatir and Others ...Page 87

by Chris Parker
Copyright 2009



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Umm El-Kanatir art from 400 to 700 A.D.

In wonder we were viewing our Cambodian Stegosaur
When some guy with a monocle burst through the back door

He took out a pen with indelible ink
Said if anyone moves your precious stego's extinct

We advanced on him slowly, couldn't believe he would do-it
But then he took his pen and drew a red line clear through it

Alas, poor Stegosaurus, we knew him well
You looked like a dinosaur but now no one can tell

Before making his escape at the back of the residence
He said; Man and dinosaur didn't coexist, so I'm destroying the evidence

We've put together a selection of ancient dinosaur depictions which have in common the fact that they all appear on or within a religious "temple" or cathedral. Currently, one of the most well-known of these depictions is the alleged stegosaurus depiction at the Ta Prohm Temple near Angkor Wat in Cambodia.

This stegosaurus depiction (or so it seems to be) has been debunked in the mind of skeptics by the fairly simple measure of drawing a line through the depiction's most prominent feature-the armor plating along it's back.

One can make up their own mind about the depiction as we review it again below. Our section on Dinosaurs in History and Art is extensive enough that we can now categorize the artifacts in a number of different groupings. Although the Cambodian stegosaur may well be the most famous depiction in the world currently, we could argue that there are even more compelling dinosaur depictions at other temple, synagogue or cathedral sites, some of which we review here..



Bi-Pedal Dinosaur and Giant Creature Attack Horse


Umm El-Kanatir
Jewish Synagogue 400-700 A.D.
Excavated in 2007

"Um el Kanatir (Umm el-Kanater) is an ancient Roman town on the Golan Heights, now an archeological site being developed into an Archaeological Park. The meaning of the name is "mother of the arches".

The site is named for the water source, a spring that pours from the face of a cliff into three basins carved of stone in antiquity. Each of the basins was surmounted by a Roman monumental arch of cut basalt. It is assumed that the niches between the arches originally held pagan images of the spirit of the waters.


Two of the arches are now in ruins, but one survives intact. They, and the village site, continued to be used into the modern period not as a town but by small numbers of local farmers and shepherds living amid and atop the ruins of the ancient town, sometimes in homes constructed out of ancient blocks of building stone reconstructed into farm houses.

It is believed that the income generated by the linen industry enabled the villagers to construct the very large sixth-century synagogue. Interestingly, the synagogue appears to have been built on the site of a more modest, fifth century synagogue. The large synagogue was destroyed the catastrophic Golan earthquake of 749.

The building was 18 meters (60 feet) long by 13 meters (43 feet) wide and calculated to have been 12 meters (40 feet) high, making it one of the largest ancient synagogues in the region.

Neither the synagogue nor the town were rebuilt after the earthquake of 749. [5] The synagogue was first identified by Laurence Oliphant and Gottlieb Schumacher in 1884. The surviving elements of the ancient synagogue".


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Umm El-Kanatir art from 400 to 700 A.D. Comparison with Cryolophosaurus and Dilophosaurus, two crested theropod dinosaurs.

"Theropod dinosaurs were bi-pedal animals with two much smaller arms which they held close to their chests. They were fiercesome meat eaters like which included tyrannosaurus and giganotosaurus.

The creature depicted joining the fray here is clearly a bi-pedal dinosaur with a distinctive head crest, a terrible aspect, and two huge thighs. The tail can be discerned by those at the site if not from the photos. This depiction also shows that the dinosaur has three toes and a hind claw, just like tyrannosaurus.

The head crest on a theropod dinosaur is somewhat unusual but there are a number of known theropods with a crest, including Cryolophosaurus, meaning "cold crest lizard"). Cryolophosaurus was a large theropod dinosaur, with a bizarre crest on its head that looked like a Spanish comb. Cryolophosaurus was excavated from Antarctica's Early Jurassic Hanson Formation (former the upper Falla Formation) by paleontologist Dr. William Hammer in 1991"...........Wikipedia

Another theropod with a head crest is Dilophosaurus. Both Cryolophosaurus and Dilophosaurus are both shown here in comparison to the dinosaur depictions at Umm El-Kanatir. This depiction may not be of either of these theropod dinosaurs but it clearly is a depiction of a theropod with a distinctive crest.

The "horse" is being directly attacked by a very large creature, possibly a reptile; possibly a feline.


Ceratopsian Dinosaur Depiction at Muktinath Temple


Site of 108 "Dragon Headed" Fountains

The Muktinath Temple was consecrated in 1815 A.D by Queen Subarna Prabha, the wife of Rana Bahadur Shah. This temple is built in a Tibetan pagoda style and contains huge brass idols of Lord Vishnu, Shiva, Brahma and Kali. The local name for Muktinath is Chumig Gyatsa....Source: Pilgrimage Tours

On a wall of the temple are 108 "dragon headed" fountains which pilgrims seek out to "cleanse" themselves. Actually, the heads are variously described as; dragons or bulls.


At least one of the heads, as seen here on the left in this photo, is not a dragon or a bull, but instead is an excellent likeness of a ceratopsian dinosaur.



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Umm El-Kanatir art from 400 to 700 A.D. Comparison with Cryolophosaurus and Dilophosaurus, two crested theropod dinosaurs.

The temple was "consecrated" in 1815. The 108 fountains has been a pilgrimage site for many number of years. Ceratopsian dinosaurs were not really understood in their present form until the late 1800's to the early 1900's, some years after the temple was consecrated. In 1887, a pair of ceratopsian horns were identified as horns of an extinct bison.

When was the ceratopsian depiction created? If in or around 1815, how was such an accurate depiction of a ceratopsian dinosaur created more than 60 years prior to the accurate depiction of these dinosaurs by science-unless someone had actually seen one alive?




Bishop Bell's Brass Behemoths!


Carlisle Cathedral Dinosaurs
by Philip Bell

�In June 2002, my family and I visited Carlisle Cathedral (UK) specifically to look under a rug! Underneath a protective carpet along a main aisle of the Cathedral (actually the main "gangway" between the choir stalls) lies a rather large tomb, inlaid with brass. The tomb belongs to my namesake (although not related, as far as I know!), Richard Bell, bishop at Carlisle until shortly before his death in 1496.


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Two sets of etchings at the tomb.

To the casual visitor, a look at this large brass, set in stone, would reveal nothing out of the ordinary (see Figures 1 and 31 [due to copyright restrictions, Figure 3 is only available in Creation magazine]).

But, on closer inspection, one can see engravings of creatures that any 21st century child would instantly recognize as dinosaurs!

With the permission of the Canon Warden of the Cathedral, the carpet was removed so that I could take photographs. Due to the fact that the brass is very worn, I was not allowed to take a brass rubbing, but the Warden very kindly supplied me with reproductions.

Born in 1410, Richard Bell entered monastic life at Durham at 16 years of age. He remained a monk for the next 50 years, during which he was ordained a priest and earned a degree at Oxford University. Following a period as Prior of Durham (1464-1478), he was promoted to the office of bishop at Carlisle in 1478.

As a monk he was unable to make a will, but historians accept that he died in 1496, hence the date assigned to his tomb.5 The brass shows Bishop Richard Bell (1.44 m or 4 ft 8� inches long) under a Gothic canopy (2.9 m or 9 ft 5 in long), dressed in his full vestments, with his mitre (bishop's cap) and crosier (hooked staff).

But it is the narrow brass fillet (2.9 m or 9 ft long), running around the edge of the tomb, that contains the items of particular interest. Owing to the passage of time (and countless thousands of tramping feet!) parts of the fillet have long since been lost, including the entire bottom section.

However, in between the words of the Latin inscription, there are depictions of various animals. Most of these are unremarkable, various fish, an eel, a dog, a pig, a bird, a weasel/stoat but a few of the engravings depict unusual creatures.

On one engraving the creatures have an unmistakable resemblance to certain dinosaurs Yet how could that be, since the bishop's tomb was sealed and decorated over three centuries before the fossil bones of such creatures were systematically dug up, described and named? �

AIG; Behemoths at Carlisle

"Perhaps we should have a brief review of what we've learned.

1. The creatures were portrayed next to known, living animals
2. The neck of the sauropod was held horizontally, not raised aloft
3. The tail of the sauropod was suspended, not lying on the ground

Could they, in the 15th century, have known of such creatures from fossils, and decided to portray them on their tombs, walls, etc? Although it is possible, it is highly improbable. Until Richard Owen invented the name "dinosaur" in 1841, only a few scientists were aware of their existence.

True, large bones had been found before the 19th century, but they were never scientifically categorized. Furthermore, how could they have known to place the neck of the animal horizontally, or suspend the tail above the ground? Lucky guesses? Most unlikely. Rather, the evidence suggests that they were eye-witnesses.

It is interesting to note that males of some long-necked animals, such as the giraffe, engage in tests of strength by "necking." They do so to establish dominance, whereby they have access to breeding females.

As we can clearly tell from the brass engravings, these creatures were engaged in something very similar. Amazingly, Bell's tomb isn't the only artifact that shows two long-necked creatures vying for dominance in this manner. An ancient Roman mosaic, dated around the 2nd century A.D. portrays the exact same behavior. Coincidence? You be the judge......"



Stegosaurs Depiction at Ta Prohm, Angkor Wat



Angkor wat is in northwest Cambodia.The initial design and construction of the temple took place in the first half of the 12th century, during the reign of Suryavarman II (ruled 1113�c. 1150). Dedicated to Vishnu, it was built as the king's state temple and capital city.

As neither the foundation stela nor any contemporary inscriptions referring to the temple have been found, its original name is unknown.

It is located 5.5 km north of the modern town of Siem Reap, and a short distance south and slightly east of the previous capital, which was centred on the Baphuon. Work seems to have come to an end on the king's death, with some of the bas-reliefs unfinished.

In 1177 Angkor was sacked by the Chams, the traditional enemies of the Khmer. Thereafter the empire was restored by a new king, Jayavarman VII, who established a new capital and state temple (Angkor Thom and the Bayon respectively) which lie a few kilometres to the north.

"After wandering through the temple and marveling at the twisting fig trees for over an hour, I finally located the glyph I was searching for near the exit to the complex.

Before me, enclosed in a round circle, was a clear depiction of what could only be a stegosaurus.

Photo Left: Stegosaurus Depiction from Ancient Caria

The creature had a small neck and four short legs with a long tail. Along its humped back, a series of plates were clearly carved.

As I stared in a wonder, a guide leading two American tourists approached the spot and casually asked them if they believed dinosaurs lived 800 years ago? He then proudly showed them the stegosaurus carving to their utter amazement.

Stylistically similar circular carvings can be found all over Ta Prohm, but none of them show this same creature.

While to my knowledge reputed sightings of a living stegosaurus have not been made, other saurians have been glimpsed.

In 1999, Papua New Guinea's The Independent newspaper reported that a "dinosaur-like reptile" was witnessed near Lake Murray."

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Dinosaurs in Literature, Art & History


Man and Dinosaur Co-existence

"In the end of November and beginning of December last, many of the country people observed dragons (probably Pterosaurs) appearing in the north and flying rapidly towards the east; from which they concluded, and their conjectures were right, that...boisterous weather would follow" ....1793 European Newspaper comment on the Weather"..

What Recorded History Tells Us About Dino's and Man

"So God created the Great Dragons"
...Genesis 1:21 The Latin Vulgate; 5th Century

Everyone agrees that stories of world wide floods similar to the Biblical Flood of Noah exist in virtually every culture. The same can be said for stories, descriptions, legends etc. concerning dragons. Evolutionists have no trouble with either of these stories, because they feel that there is a good rationalization for them.(Image: More about the Palestrina Mosaic on Page 2 of this section and the Anasazi petroglyph on Page 3)

On the other hand, those of us who do believe the Bible, and thus would expect that man and dinosaur (or dragon) co-existed in the past, would expect; and find it strange if stories concerning the flood and dinosaurs did not abound in most cultures of the past. If dinosaur and man co-existed, where there was writing, art, literature and artifacts, among them should be indications of this interaction. Dinosaurs (or dragons) would not have been very discreet neighbors.

As it turns out, there is plenty of such evidence of interaction between man and dinosaur in history, art and archeology, as believers would expect.

As late as the sixteeth and seventeenth centuries, many serious scholars were studying animal life, recording what they saw, and claiming personally to have seen dragons (dinosaurs).

Johann Johnston (1693-75), a doctor of medicine, published the celebrated: De Serpentibus et Draconibus in 1653. It featured many animals which are now extinct, all - according to the author,`carefully drawn from living models.

This in and of itself does not prove anything, however, their absence would be difficult to explain.

How many artifacts are needed to prove that man and dinosaur co-existed? It would seem to present a major difficulty for evolutionists to explain the representation in art or literature--or in artifacts of recognizable species of dinosaurs--- by ancient men who supposely had never seen one alive.

One could surmise that perhaps they had merely come across fossils, but surely, they would not have had the necessary skills to assemble them, and then to draw them or describe them as in life?

Modern scientists have themselves occasionally placed the wrong heads on skeletons or combined the bones of more than one specimen. This presents a problem if you believe in uniformism and evolution.

There is way too much "evidence" to place on one page, so deciding what proofs to represent is difficult. Textual evidence, like stories, accounts, newspaper articles and the like are plentiful, but perhaps not as persuasive as are physical evidences such as physical artifacts or pictures. There is an abundance of each, some very interesting ones on this page and the pages following.

The above quote from Jerome's Latin translation of the Bible,(Genesis 1:21) uses the word dragon, where others have used the word whales, or sea monsters.

The Hebrew word; Tanniyn is the same word that is variously translated as whales, sea monsters and jackals at various points in the new and old testaments.

It seems likely that in Jerome's time, great dragons did exist, so he could believe that that was a correct translation in Genesis and other places where the word is used. More modern translators, believing dragons to be a myth, but Genesis to be factual, have substituted other close meanings of the word--except where it obviously would not make sense contextually.

"A rather simple strategy to find Dinosaurs in history: Look for pictures, statues, carvings, or written descriptions. Attempt to associate names with them. Try to find the names in other places.

Try to obtain more descriptive material. Realize that, even as today, local names will vary. But, if you are genuinely interested, you will find dinosaurs everywhere! Europeans called them "Dragons," Chinese and Japanese called them "Lung," Scandinavians even had species names for them, including, apparently, for Tyrannosaurus Rex.

You will find the Apatosaurous/Diplodicus (they are likely the same) unmistakably described in the Bible book of Job 40 (Behemoth), as well as a large marine or carnivorous dinosaur in Job 41 (Leviathan).

Leviathan is mentioned several other times, but, ... not described again.

When you look at the problem of dinosaur extinction this way, you quickly learn, if you really want to, that large creatures with reptilian characteristics, some flying, some two-legged, some four-legged, some marine, appear in the art, sculpture, literature, chronicles, and legends of virtually every culture in world history. But none of them were called "Dinosaurs" because the word wasn't invented until the early 1800's!"..Tom Willis, CSA

The Stones of Ica"

"In widely separated areas of North and South America, construction of earth mounds and artificial shaping of hills and cliffs show familiarity on the part of the ancient artisans with animals SUPPOSEDLY EXTINCT in the Americas for thousands, and in some cases, MILLIONS OF YEARS. A great mound in Wisconsin is shaped like the outline of an elephant or mastodon . . .

Some pre-Incaic people carved the rock cliffs of the Marcahuasi Plateau of Peru into huge representations of lions, camels, and something resembling a STEGOSAURUS.

"In a small town near the Nazca lines, the narrow Ica River was eroded away along the banks, revealing several hundred carved stones that had been buried in subterranean chambers. As the water receded, the carved stones were left on the Ica's banks.

As the locals began to collect these stones, a particular image of a fish caught the eye of Dr. Javier Cabrera, the town's physician. Dr. Cabrera recognized the outlined image as that if an extinct species of fish. His curiosity peaked, he sought more of these stones. Gradually, the villagers knew that he was interested in these strange objects and so they gave him what is now his collection-- something Cabrera calls his "library"-- of stone enigmas.

The stones come in all sizes. There are small ones that can easily fit your palm and there are rocks as large as a dog. All of the stones have images that have been carved with continuous lines etched into the rock surface. The etching reveals a lighter color than the original dark varnish of age, yet the etched grooves also bear traces of this varnish, indicating that the carving was done in ancient times"....DAN EDEN

"In the vicinity of the village of Ocucaje and Ica, in Peru, a collection of rounded stones totaling perhaps 16,000 and weighing from five pounds up to huge boulders of 800 pounds has been amassed by Dr. Javier Cabrera, who has about 11,000 of them in his museum. What is unusual about these 'stones of Ica' is that they are covered with incised drawings ostensibly made by carvers of past civilizations.

The engraved drawings show people, extant and extinct animals, star maps, the star ring of the zodiac, and maps of unidentified land areas. The people are shown hunting or struggling with a variety of monsters that resemble Brontosaurs, Click and drag photo to resize.  See Also: Ica Stones Revisited

Triceratops, Stegosaurs, and Pterodactyls, . . .

Even more surprisingly, human beings are portrayed as having domesticated animals that appear to be DINOSAURS and are using them for transportation and warfare. People are shown using telescopes, looking at the stars, and performing surgery" (ibid., p.193-194).Berlitz

..... these stones cannot be so easily dismissed because early Spanish reports tell that some of the stones were sent back to Spain by Spanish explorers in 1562 -- proving they are not of recent origin.

There is no rhyme or reason for them to have been "fabricated" so many centuries ago. Furthermore, the fact that they are at least several centuries old is attested to by the oxidation produced by the aging of the minerals covering the incisions of the drawings.

Click and drag photo to resize. Script from The Java Script Source

"In addition to the stones, Cabrera, right, also had a collection of minature clay figures from the same period which also showed humans interacting with dinosaurs. More about these clay figures at OMNIOLOGY.COM. See Also The Interactive Bible


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The "Leviathan"


Engraving by Gustave Dore

Job 41--The Bible

Can you pull in the leviathan with a fishhook or tie down his tongue with a rope? Can you put a cord through his nose or pierce his jaw with a hook? Will he keep begging you for mercy? Will he speak to you with gentle words? Will he make an agreement with you for you to take him as your slave for life? Can you make a pet of him like a bird or put him on a leash for your girls? Will traders barter for him?

Will they divide him up among the merchants? Can you fill his hide with harpoons or his head with fishing spears?

If you lay a hand on him, you will remember the struggle and never do it again! Any hope of subduing him is false; the mere sight of him is overpowering. No one is fierce enough to rouse him. Who then is able to stand against me?

Who has a claim against me that I must pay? Everything under heaven belongs to me. "I will not fail to speak of his limbs, his strength and his graceful form. Who can strip off his outer coat? Who would approach him with a bridle? Who dares open the doors of his mouth, ringed about with his fearsome teeth? His back has rows of shields tightly sealed together; each is so close to the next that no air can pass between.

They are joined fast to one another; they cling together and cannot be parted. His snorting throws out flashes of light; his eyes are like the rays of dawn. Firebrands stream from his mouth; sparks of fire shoot out. Smoke pours from his nostrils as from a boiling pot over a fire of reeds. His breath sets coals ablaze, and flames dart from his mouth.

Strength resides in his neck; dismay goes before him. The folds of his flesh are tightly joined; they are firm and immovable. His chest is hard as rock, hard as a lower millstone. When he rises up, the mighty are terrified; they retreat before his thrashing. The sword that reaches him has no effect, nor does the spear or the dart or the javelin.

Iron he treats like straw and bronze like rotten wood. Arrows do not make him flee; slingstones are like chaff to him. A club seems to him but a piece of straw; he laughs at the rattling of the lance.

His undersides are jagged potsherds, leaving a trail in the mud like a threshing sledge. He makes the depths churn like a boiling caldron and stirs up the sea like a pot of ointment. Behind him he leaves a glistening wake; one would think the deep had white hair.

Nothing on earth is his equal-- a creature without fear. He looks down on all that are haughty; he is king over all that are proud."




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