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Another Top 10 Historical Objects Ruined by Morons

VO: Joshua Karpati WRITTEN BY: Nathan Sharp

Another Top 10 Historical Objects Ruined by Morons

Well, so much for that priceless artifact. From the Nazca Lines, to Dunster’s Cobblestone Paths, A 5,000-Year-Old Rock Carving, some… ahem… idiots… never learn! WatchMojo counts down Another Top 10 Historical Objects Ruined by Morons.

Thanks to our user Shawn Mark for suggesting this idea! Check out the voting page at https://www.WatchMojo.comsuggest/Top+10+Priceless+Artifacts+Destroyed+by+Idiots.


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Script written by Nathan Sharp

Another Top 10 Historical Objects Ruined by Morons

Well, so much for that priceless artifact. Welcome to, and today we’re counting down our picks for another Top 10 Historical Objects Ruined by Morons.

For this list, we’ll be looking at more historical objects and artifacts that were destroyed by some pretty inconsiderate, ignorant, or clumsy people. We will be ranking our picks based on the importance of the site and/or artifact, and the level of idiocy involved in its destruction.

#10: The Nazca Lines

The Nazca Lines are brilliant artistic designs made in the desert grounds of southern Peru. The designs were created between 500 BC and 500 AD and range from geometric patterns to depictions of human, animal, and natural life. These can stretch over 1,000 feet in length and can clearly be seen from the air and from nearby hilltops. However, many of the lines have been damaged in recent years by squatters, construction machinery, careless Greenpeace activists who walked over the site with sneakers, off-road vehicles, and a truck driver who accidentally drove over numerous lines.

#9: Dunster’s Cobblestone Paths

Dunster, Somerset is known for being an extremely well-preserved example of a medieval English village. It houses a 1,000-year-old castle and contained beautiful cobblestone paths that dated back to the Bronze Age. However, after numerous reports of people tripping on the ancient stones, the village’s council decided to rip up the millennia-old cobblestones and replace them with smoother paving stones. The villagers, who initially supported the idea, then showed their intense hatred of the new paving stones by complaining to the media. The council then decided to rip up the slabs at significant cost and replace them with stones that fit more with the village’s aesthetic.

#8: A 5,000-Year-Old Rock Carving

Well, we suppose they had good intentions. The Norwegian island of Tro houses a 5,000-year-old rock carving depicting a man on skis. This carving is one of the world’s earliest indications of skiing, and it inspired the symbols of the 1994 Lillehammer Olympics. However, it was ruined in 2016 when two teenagers carved over it in an attempt to make it appear brighter and clearer. The teenagers, not realizing what a serious infraction they had committed, turned themselves in amidst the intense media frenzy. The two then faced criminal charges and prosecution under the country’s Cultural Heritage Act.

#7: King Tut’s Beard

Chalk this up to Tutankhamun’s curse. Tutankhamun was an Egyptian pharaoh who ruled from 1332 to 1323 BC. His tomb was finally discovered in 1922, and the mummy of Tutankhamun was uncovered three years later. While the chin was initially found broken off his death mask, it was permanently reattached in 1944. Or so everyone thought. In 2014, it was accidentally broken off and hastily glued back on, a process that caused irreparable scratches to the beard. After people began to notice the botched glue job, the mask was professionally fixed, and eight people faced criminal charges for their negligence in “repairing” the priceless mask with superglue.

#6: A 126-Year-Old Statue of Dom Sebastian I

And here we have another tragic case of a selfie ruining a beloved piece of art. A child-sized statue of Portuguese king Dom Sebastian I stood outside the Rossio railway station in Lisbon, Portugal. This statue lasted for 126 years before it literally fell to a selfie. A 24-year-old man climbed the façade outside the Rossio station to take a picture with the statue. However, he accidentally knocked the statue over, and it shattered to pieces upon contact with the ground. The man tried to run away, but he was apprehended by police and faced prosecution for destroying a century-old artifact.

#5: A Neolithic Tomb

In 2015, workers in the Spanish town of Cristovo de Cea accidentally filled in a 6,000-year-old tomb with concrete and topped it off with a picnic table. They thought the tomb’s slabs were a stone bench that had fallen into disrepair, so they wanted to erect a fancy picnic table in its place. The town’s mayor said that he wasn’t aware of the site’s historical significance, and the site wasn’t marked or protected in any way. People better have some damn good picnics on that bench, because it cost history a 6,000-year-old tomb to put it there.

#4: The Second Temple of Artemis

While the original Temple of Artemis was destroyed in a flood, it was rebuilt in a more extravagant manner around 550 BC. It stood nearly 400 feet long and 150 feet wide, contained 40-foot tall columns, and was allegedly the first Greek temple to be made from marble. It was a notable attraction for almost two hundred years, but it was burned to the ground in 356 BC by some snot-nosed punk named Herostratus, who simply wanted to be famous. He was subsequently tortured on the rack and executed, and his name was banned from being spoken or written with the intention of erasing him from history. It didn’t work.

#3: Troy

Troy is an ancient city depicted in Homer’s “Iliad,” said to be the site of the famous Trojan War. The historical city of Troy is located in modern-day Turkey and was partially excavated by Heinrich Schliemann in the 1870s. However, Schliemann was wasn’t a great archaeologist, and he proceeded to blast away the walls and layers of Troy and carved massive trenches in the ground that remain to this day. As one scholar stated, Schliemann “destroyed a phenomenal amount of material.” And this is why inexperienced archaeologists are not allowed to excavate millennia-old cities.

#2: Buddhas of Bamiyan

The Buddhas of Bamiyan were two enormous statues of buddha that were carved out of a cliffside in Afghanistan. The statues were carved in the 6th century, and they were reportedly decorated with elaborate jewelry by the year 630. The statues persisted for over 1,000 years until they were destroyed by the Taliban in March of 2001. The statues were bombarded with anti-aircraft weaponry, dynamite, artillery, and mines before the Taliban repelled down the cliff and placed explosives inside the monuments. The commander of the Taliban, Mohammed Omar, stated that, “It has given praise to Allah that we have destroyed them.”

Before we unveil our top pick, here are a few dishonorable mentions.

1870s Martin Guitar

Rock Art at Lake Mead National Recreation Area

The Colosseum

#1: Many Ancient Sites Destroyed by ISIS

Throughout the years, ISIS has destroyed many notable ancient sites with bulldozers and explosives. They’ve destroyed religious sites like the Mar Elian and Mar Behnam monasteries, and the Mosque of the Prophet Yunus. They’ve destroyed numerous historic pieces of architecture, including the Imam Dur Mausoleum. They’ve bulldozed historic cities like Nimrud, an Assyrian city that flourished between 1350 and 610 BC, and Nineveh, which was at one point the largest city in the world. Even UNESCO World Heritage Sites weren’t safe, as the site of Hatra was extensively damaged by ISIS in 2015.


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