Video: Scientists Make Easter Island Statue Walk

Easter Island is a remote and mysterious place best known for the iconic and other worldly stone faces that dot its landscape. More than 880 of those statues, known as moai, are spread out across the island, some of which weigh in excess of 80 tons and stand more than 10 meters in height. One of the enduring mysteries of the moai is just how they were carved and then moved miles away from the stone quarry. Now two archaeologists believe that they have come up with the answer, which you can see demonstrated in the video below.

Terry Hunt and Carl Lipo believe that the inhabitants of Easter Island used ropes to rock the statues back and forth. This built forward momentum could then be used to “walk” the stone figures to their permanent sites. The duo put their theory to the test with a moai replica last year and was able to maneuver the large statue with as few as 18 people. As you can see from the video, which comes to us from National Geographic, this seems to be an efficient and quick way to move heavy objects.

So what do you think? Is this how the moai were moved about the island? Have Hunt and Lipo solved one of the great archaeological mysteries of all time?