Who would have known that Syria hid under its deserts a mystery city? Archeologists have found near the ancient monastery of Deir Mar Musa, 50 miles north of Damascus, fragments of stone tools, stone lines and circles on the ground, and even tombs. Unfortunately the war-torn area prevents archeologists from bringing to light this diamond in the rough.
“What it looked like was a landscape for the dead and not for the living,” declared archaeologist Robert Mason of the Royal Ontario Museum.
The discovery was made back in 2009, during a trip in the country and he is eager to go back and further explore the site, but he is aware of the fact that this is an impossible dream until the regional conflicts stop.
“It’s something that needs more work and I don’t know if that’s ever going to happen.”
The Monastery of Saint Moses the Abyssinian is also an amazing ancient construction dating back in the 4th-5th century, also featuring some frescoes from the 11th and 12th century depicting Judgment Day and Christian Saints. Robert Mason believes that the monastery was initially a Roman watchtower, which was partially destroyed by an earthquake and then rebuilt.
But the mysterious city is the one that puzzles the archeologist, since tools discovered nearby make him believe the city is much older than the monastery, dating back to the Neolithic Period or early Bronze Age, 6,000 to 10,000 years ago. This would be an amazing discovery taking into consideration the fact that the oldest pyramid, the Great Pyramid of Giza, is 4,500 years old.
Mason also discovered ‘desert kites’, which are corral-like stone formations used to trap gazelles and other animals. This means that the current rocks and sand were once beautiful green pastures thousands of years ago. He also believes that if he begins to excavate under the monastery he will find an entrance to underground tombs there. Unfortunately, what he calls “Syria’s Stonehenge” will only remain a mystery due to the unstoppable regional conflicts.