Geoglyphs in the Middle East are the subjects of an article by Owen Jarus at LiveScience titled:
Visible Only From Above, Mystifying 'Nazca Lines' Discovered in Mideast
reporting on the research work of David Kennedy, professor of classics and ancient history at the University of Western Australia.
As Jarus writes initer alia in his article:
"Kennedy's main area of expertise is in Roman archaeology, but he became fascinated by these structures when, as a student, he read accounts of Royal Air Force pilots flying over them in the 1920s on airmail routes across Jordan. "You can't not be fascinated by these things," Kennedy said.
Indeed, in 1927 RAF Flight Lt. Percy Maitland published an account of the ruins in the journal Antiquity. He reported encountering them over "lava country" and said that they, along with the other stone structures, are known to the Bedouin as the "works of the old men.""I have deciphered one of these geoglyphs in the country of Jordan as ASTRONOMY, and it is in fact very clearly astronomy.
The geoglyphs are known as "kites", and archaeologists have ventured the theory that they were built on this desolate, barren landscape -- a surprising theory -- for the practical purpose of corralling herds of wild animals which purportedly roamed this region in prehistoric days. Indeed, as reported by Larry O'Hanlon at Discovery News in Mysterious Desert Lines Were Animal Traps, Uzi Avner of Ben-Gurion University-Eilat, in Israel is quoted as saying:
"We have no doubt at all that the kites were built for hunting, not for any other suggested function."The certainty of that statement was a shocker, for, as O'Hanlon writes further:
"Interestingly, the walls of the kites are not high enough to actually block the animals. Rather, they just seem to channel herds in the right direction. Modern wildlife managers in the same region have used a similar approach by laying pipes on the ground to direct gazelles into a corral, Avner reports."The idea of herds of wild game in this region in some previous era is no doubt enticing to some, but we are not aware of too many successful catches recently via these kinds of "hunting channels". On the other hand, we do not know enough about hunting or ancient game populations in this region to be certain about this matter, so we leave the issue open for comment by others, although we are very skeptical.
Our astronomical theory here explains clearly the circles of stones that irregularly mark the lines of the kite that we decipher, which the hunting theory does not, and can not.
The "kite" that I have deciphered (you can view the original aerial photograph at APAAME) is really quite splendid and clearly shows primarily the constellation Auriga, surprisingly portrayed as an anatomical "heart" -- so my original interpretation, which is flanked left and right by lines marking the Milky Way. I date this Jordan kite to ca. 3450 BC, presuming that Auriga at that time marked the Vernal Equinox point at the middle line of the heart.
The depiction of Auriga as a heart is very ancient, found to my knowledge only in ancient India, where it was Brahma Ridaya, "the heart of Brahma". See the direct free link at Richard Hinckley Allen, Star Names, p. 88.
There are also additional figures drawn on the ground near the heart, including Ursa Minor above it as a human head in profile, the front of Cepheus is depicted as the beak of a bird, and Cassiopeia is a bird of some kind.
To the right is an eagle-like bird of some kind either representing the stars of what we today call Camelopardalis (a modern constellation though of course the stars were always there) viz. Perseus, though the latter is unlikely because it is in the Milky Way and almost below it. On the other hand, the Milky Way is drawn quite thin on this Jordan Kite.
In the course of the years, confusion via the passage of time may have led the name of Perseus to be assigned to neighboring Auriga, for in ancient Hebrew (Parash) and also in ancient India (Parasiea), Perseus was the horseman, which became Auriga the charioteer in the West.
I have not drawn in all the figures I see on the ground, as the ones I already have drawn are the major ones.