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Ivan Van Sertima's They Came Before Columbus Theory
Transcript of Ivan Van Sertima's They Came Before Columbus Theory
By Kate Peaquin
The Olmec Heads
Claims of the Theory
The Theory claims that Africans came to Mesoamerica bewteen 900 and 800 BC and then returned in 1311. While in Mesoamerican, the Africans interacted with the natives.
Ivan was born in Guyana, South Africa
He was a news broadcaster, literary critic, linguist, and anthropologist as well as a renowned poet
Ivan was a Professor of African Studies at Rugers University
Ivan has lectured at more than 100 universities and in Canada, the Caribbean, South America, the United States, and Europe
Ivan Van Setima
The braids seen here are consistent with Ethiopian braids of the time.
The helmet on the stone heads is distinctly Egyptian
The Olmec stone heads have vividly African features such as a broad nose and full lips and these similarities were noted by many scholars and researchers
The heads are estimated to have been made at around 948 to 780 BC which is the time period in which van Sertima calims that the African came.
How Did the Africans travel to Mesoamerica?
Egyptian and Ethiopian boats would have been able to cross oceans due to the way that they were built
A boat made from Ethiopian and Egyptian descriptions and it was able to successfully cross the Atlantic Ocean.
Their are three major currents that flow from Africa to the Americas and these currents would have guided the Africans directly to the Americas.
120 recorded small boats have crossed the Atlantic successfully and they have all done it faster than Columbus.
Why would the Africans go to Mesoamerica?
In the 900s and 800s the Egyptians were at war with Syria and this caused many sea and trading ports to be closed to Egyptians so it is probable that they would look to the Atlantic to expand their trading network.
Another reason could be that the Egyptians were looking for more sources of purple dye as their were few left in Europe and Northern Africa.
In 1311, 400 Mali ships supposedly sailed to Mesoamerica and Prince Abubkari heard of their findings and abdicated the throne to explore this new land.
Evidence that Supports the Theory
An Egyptian Step Pyramid
A Mayan Temple