Talk:Effigy mound

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Effigy[edit]

TriNotch: I respectfully disagree with your assertion that effigy mounds need to represent "a stylized animal, symbol, or human figure." Thousands of effigy mounds have survived modern encroachment, but only a fraction of them fit your definition. From the Wisconsin Historical Society:"Some effigies are recognizable as birds, animals such as bear or deer, spirit animals, or people. Other mounds are abstract, including long linear embankments or combinations of embankments with the dome-shaped mounds favored by earlier peoples."[1] Hence, I'd like to re-add the caveat explaining that only some of the subject matter includes depictions of animals, etc.--Appraiser 01:01, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

Hmm, this is interesting. For me, long linear and/or abstract embankments, as well as small dome or round mounds, could be (admittedly stretching the definition a bit) described as stylized symbol effigies, so I don't see the conflict. However, now I think I understand your perspective. How shall we resolve this? I think it is advisable to make it clear that effigy mounds are 1. a type of mound, and 2. generally act as effigies of something, although we may not recognize what that is. I also think it is desirable to be clear that "mound" has more variability than "effigy mound." Perhaps we should distinguish between "mound," "effigy mound," and "non-effigy mounds built by the Effigy Mound cultures" or something like that. Do you have any other ideas? TriNotch 04:04, 29 August 2007 (UTC)

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Statement moved from the article text to the talkpage, as it belongs here Yoenit (talk) 17:05, 22 June 2011 (UTC)

I believe the statement above: "Effigy mounds were only built during the Late Woodland Period (AD 350-1300)" is incorrect. There is a famous effigy mound in the Greater Cincinnati area that is beleived to be from the Adena Period (800BC -AD100) http://ohsweb.ohiohistory.org/places/sw16/index.shtml Atop a plateau overlooking the Brush Creek Valley, Serpent Mound is the largest and finest serpent effigy in the United States. Nearly a quarter of a mile long, Serpent Mound apparently represents an uncoiling serpent.

In the late nineteenth-century Harvard University archaeologist Frederic Ward Putnam excavated Serpent Mound and attributed the creation of the effigy to the builders of the two nearby burial mounds, which he also excavated. We now refer to this culture as the Adena (800 BC-AD 100). A third burial mound at the park and a village site near the effigy's tail belong to the Fort Ancient culture (AD 1000-1550).

A more recent excavation of Serpent Mound revealed wood charcoal that could be radiocarbon dated. Test results show that the charcoal dates to the Fort Ancient culture. This new evidence of the serpent's creators links the effigy to the elliptical mound and the village rather than the conical burial mounds.

The head of the serpent is aligned to the summer solstice sunset and the coils also may point to the winter solstice sunrise and the equinox sunrise. Today, visitors may walk along a footpath surrounding the serpent and experience the mystery and power of this monumental effigy. A public park for more than a century, Serpent Mound attracts visitors from all over the world. The museum contains exhibits on the effigy mound and the geology of the surrounding area. LuvToRead3 (talk) 15:01, 22 June 2011 (UTC)