The Influence of Stonehenge on Minoan Navigation and Trade in Europe
How Michigan Copper Arrived in the Mediterranean During the Bronze Age
by Capt. Richard deGrasse
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|History History Transportation
AbstractThis book presents a plausible account of how thousands of tons of unusually pure copper ore from Isle Royale in northern Michigan's Lake Superior was mined and shipped to Europe by the Minoans 4500 years ago during the Bronze Age, and how Stonehenge in England was used as an aid to Minoan celestial navigation back and forth across the Atlantic Ocean. The author proposes that Minoan ocean navigators used stone circles, particularly Stonehenge, to advance the science of celestial astronomy of Bronze Age navigation and trade.
Words of Praise and Reviews
Richard De Grasse has written a book about the Minoan (people from Crete) exploration of the copper mines of Isle Royale in Lake Superior, Michigan during the Bronze age. While this is an original, as yet unproven theory, De Grasse makes a good case, which certainly increased my knowledge. He also draws in the stone circles such as Stonehenge and explains how they could have been used to help with early navigation. Much of the Minoan theory comes from the discovery of a wreck off Uluburun, Turkey in 1985. The wreck was carefully explored by the Turks, and the artifacts placed in a nearby museum in Bodrum. The copper ingots on board were found to be 99.5% pure, a number much higher that the copper being mined in Europe at the time. An explanation here: bronze is composed of 90% copper and 10% tin.
The Bronze Age lasted from roughly 3300 to 1200 B.C., ending abruptly with the near-simultaneous collapse of several prominent Bronze Age civilizations and ushering in the Iron Age, when humans figured out to use iron in implement and weapons. That Stonehenge was used to map the skies and teach navigators is also not part of a mainstream accepted thought. But here again, De Grasse makes an excellent case, and teaches some celestial navigation to boot. The book is an amusing and easy read for someone interested in ancient history and navigation. The author’s enthusiasm is infectious, and will no doubt keep the reader engaged.
--Peter Willcox, author of Greenpeace Captain: My Adventures in Protecting the Future of Our Planet
About the AuthorRichard de Grasse is a Professional Engineer and lifetime mariner. Beginning with a tour of duty in the United States Coast Guard he became a Licensed Merchant Marine Officer a Power and Sail Squadron Navigator and member of the esteemed Ocean Cruising Club. He and his mate Kathleen sailed a small boat all around the oceans for thirty years. He has written numerous short stories and six novels mostly dealing with the sea. This nonfiction work is dedicated to those extraordinary ancient mariners who sailed the oceans thirty-five hundred years before Columbus.
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