One of the world’s most famous yet least visited archaeological sites, Easter Island is a small, hilly, now treeless island of volcanic origin.
It is famous for its giant Moai stone statues. Moai are statues carved by the Polynesian colonisers of the island begging by about AD 1000–1000 from compressed volcanic ash on Easter Island.
Although usually identified as “heads” only, the moai are actually heads and truncated torsos. The statues are all monolithic, that is, carved in one piece. With over 1000 of them standing staring out to the ocean, the Moai have always been shrouded in mystery.
It is thought that they symbolically represented the different tribes that lived on the island and construction began as early as the 8th century before ceasing abruptly in the 17th century.
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