By Derek Olson
A small village in southern Italy is home to an incredible prehistoric enigma. For centuries, perhaps millennia, a mysterious monolith (or should I say megalith?) has dominated the landscape and been waiting for its rightful place in the archeological world.
Defying time and weather, “The Elephant of Campana” stands over sixteen feet tall. Despite the horrific erosion it has endured, the shape of a massive elephant appears quite obvious with the trunk, tusks and ears clearly marked.
And the elephant appears to have something on its back… is that the lower extremity of a rider from the waist down to the ankles?
Some archaeologists claim that this is a depiction of “Elephas Antiquus” from the late Pleistocene period, which would have been of similar size and featured the same straight tusks in prehistory. Fossils of this ancient elephant have been discovered in the Pollino Massif mountains, proving that southern Europe was once inhabited by this direct decedent of this Asiatic elephant. Some even wonder if this weathered “statue” is actually a fossilized Elephas Antiquus.
Underneath the elephant, caves have been excavated, sparking theories that an ancient subterranean civilization may have lived underneath it, and possibly even carved it.
I find it interesting that in Plato’s “Critias” text, which describes the incredible natural attributes of the golden age city of Atlantis, there is this curious passage…
“There was an abundance of wood for carpenter’s work, and sufficient maintenance for tame and wild animals. Moreover, there were a great number of elephants in the island; for as there was provision for all other sorts of animals, both for those which live in lakes and marshes and rivers, and also for those which live in mountains and on plains, so there was for the animal which is the largest and most voracious of all.”
The use of the word “abundance” here helps to illuminate the idea that Atlantis was like a type of paradise – at least in the sense of nature. It is as if Plato is telling us that it was through this paradise of natural wonders that elephants were able to thrive in this environment. Although Plato does not go into great detail about the elephants themselves, it is obvious that they hold immense power and are animals to be respected when he writes that they are “the largest and most voracious of all.”
In the last twenty years, Dr Robert Schoch and others have put forth compelling evidence that the Great Sphinx of Giza could be at least 12,000 years old. And that due to the intense erosion that would have especially impacted the head, the Dynastic Egyptians of 3000 BC re-carved the head, which is why it is so much smaller than the rest of the body today.
With the being said, are we looking here at another severely weathered zoomorphic monument from the golden age of Atlantis that is hidden in plain site?
Special thanks to Gianluca Riggi for providing information about this amazing enigma & most of these original photographs.