An extremely odd prehistoric artifact found in a Chalcolithic (Aeneolithic, Copper Age) settlement from 5,000 BC near Telish in Northwest Bulgaria, which has conditionally been known as a clay model of a “rocket" or a “space ship", has no archaeological analogies at least in Southeast and Eastern Europe, according to renewed research by its finder, archaeologist Ventsislav Gergov.
Nobody knows what the weird clay artifact actually represents, nor what it was really used for by the people of the Copper Age, so Gergov, a long time researcher of the prehistoric civilization from the Chalcolithic in today’s Northwest and North Central Bulgaria, has conditionally named it after what it seems to resemble the most, a “rocket".
For lack of a better description, the mysterious artifact is listed in the official catalog of the Regional Museum of History in Pleven, Central North Bulgaria, which owns the find, as a “clay model of a rocket".
Ventsislav Gergov discovered the prehistoric “rocket from Telish" back in 1983 during the excavations of the Telish – Redutite Chalcolithic settlement. After decades of research, he claims that the site in question is the only completely researched Copper Age settlement in Southeast Europe.
In addition to the mysterious “rocket" artifact, the most famous finds from the Telish – Redutite Settlement are dozens of clay statuettes of sitting mother goddesses, the largest number of such goddesses to have been discovered at any Chalcolithic site.
In an interview (Part 1; Part 2) for ArchaeologyinBulgaria.com, Gergov has revealed that decades after the original discovery, he has renewed his research on the “spaceship" artifact by trying to locate any similar finds from other prehistoric sites in Southeast and Eastern Europe. However, he discovered no analogies whatsoever, at least in this part of the world.
“I continue to refer to it as a clay model of a “rocket" or a “space ship", as in a human-made space ship or an alien-made space ship, if you wish – but in quotes!" Gergov has said.
“Neither I, nor anybody else knows what this small clay figurine actually represents so as a working title we, including the Pleven Regional Museum of History, refer to it as a “rocket" model or a “space ship" model,” he adds.
A replica of the mysterious prehistoric clay amulet resembling a spaceship rocket from the 7,000-year-old Telish – Redutite Chalcolithic settlement in Telish, Northwest Bulgaria. This is a replica shown by archaeologist Ventsislav Gergov on his kitchen table in his home in Telish. The catalog of the Pleven Regional Museum of History, which owns the original artifact, describes it as a “Model of a ‘Rocket’, painted red, worn as amulet”. Photo: ArchaeologyinBulgaria.com
“This is not to say that it was brought or made by aliens or anything else of the sort – this is just an artifact which looks like a space rocket or a space shuttle, and since we have no explanation of its shape and function, we have assigned this conditional name to it,” the archaeologist elaborates.
He emphasizes that neither he, nor any of his colleagues have any idea what the artifact really stood for, or whether in some bewildering way it might be a representation of an actual space ship.
“Whenever I have presented this odd artifact at archaeological conferences or symposia, nobody has really challenged or disputed its conditional name because nobody knows what it really is. This is just a conditional name after what the model looks like,” Gergov explains.
“I have just completed my renewed research into the matter, and no records from Central, Eastern, and Southeast Europe show any prehistoric find that is even remotely similar to this “rocket" model from Telish. I wouldn’t dare speak of the entire world but I’ve never read or heard of anything similar from elsewhere,” he adds.
A photo from an official calendar of the Bulgarian Telegraphic Agency (BTA) from 1998 shows archaeologist Ventsislav Gergov holding the prehistoric “space rocket” artifact from the Telish – Redutite settlement. Nobody really knows what the artifact depicts, and renewed research into prehistoric finds from Central and Eastern Europe has found nothing comparable to it. Photo. BTA
The long time researcher of the Chalcolithic civilization which existed in Southeast Europe ca. 5,000 BC points out that he has always tried to stay away from sensantionalism and to expose pseudo-scientific claims.
“I would like to underscore that sensational “archaeology", so to say, is on the rise in Bulgaria in recent years, and I would like to steer clear of that. So in this particular case with the prehistoric “rocket" model from Telish we have an artifact that nobody can explain, and which appears to resemble a modern-day space ship more than it resembles anything else. Again, I am not saying that it means that it belonged to aliens, or that the prehistoric people were visited by aliens – just that it looks like a rocket,” Gergov elaborates.
One of the reasons he quickly decided the mysterious artifact looks like a rocket is the fact that back in his young age he served in a missile unit of the Bulgarian military.
“This clay artifact has a conic shape with a rounded top. On the sides, it has six semi-spheres with openings. The bottom isn’t round but elliptical, and has three holes in a line. The entire model is polished, and decorated with red paint. It has a hole in on the sides of its top which means that it was worn on a string as an amulet,” the archaeologist explains.
“It resembles a modern-day space rocket not just in its shape but also because of the holes in the six semi-spheres in the top part, which could be construed to depict stabilizing engines or auxiliary engines used to get a rocket beyond a planet’s atmosphere, and the three holes in the oval bottom could depict the main engines of the space ship. This artifact is certainly of great interest to ufologists, but then, again, a “rocket" model is just a conditional working title of an artifact with an unknown function. My renewed research has now shown that nothing of the sort has been discovered in the Chalcolithic sites in Central and Eastern Europe,” Gergov continunes.
“As an archaeologist, I don’t believe in anything before I’ve seen it. I do think that humans are not alone in the universe as far as intelligent life is concerned. And I do think that this artifact is really interesting, but I certainly don’t think it is any kind of evidence of alien presence on Earth,” he adds.
He does concede, however, that the “rocket" model is especially intriguing against the backdrop of the prehistoric people’s lack of abstract thinking, namely, the presumption that in order to depict anything, they must have seen it beforehand.
One of the sitting goddesses and the original of the mysterious “spaceship” or “rocket” artifact discovered by Ventsislav Gergov in the 7,000-year-old Telish – Redutite Chalcolithic settlement in Telish, Northwest Bulgaria, as displayed at the Pleven Regional Museum of History. Photo: Pleven Regional Museum of History
“They never did anything abstract. They didn’t have that kind of thinking, abstract thinking hadn’t developed yet as evidenced by everything that is left of their material and spiritual culture. So I think that whatever this weird artifact represents, it is something that its creator had seen in some form in order be able to reproduce it as a clay figurine,” the archaeologist says.
“Of course, our modern-day imagination can go really far. So I’ve been asked if the triangle-shaped heads of the sitting goddesses from Telish shouldn’t be considered as further evidence of the presence of aliens in human Prehistory, alongside the “rocket" model – you know, if the prehistoric humans didn’t actually meet aliens with triangular heads, and decide to worship them as gods,” he recalls.
Gergov stresses that there have been no plausible hypotheses about this “rocket” or “space ship” model discovered in one of the prehistoric settlements in Telish, Northwest Bulgaria.
“The only thing some of my colleagues have ventured as a guess is that it represents a phallus. My reply in such cases is somewhat cynical but it boils down to the fact that this artifact looks nothing like a phallus,” he adds.
“Whenever I’ve presented this artifact with its conditional name at archaeological conferences, my colleagues listen carefully, and nobody knows what it is. They don’t dispute the “rocket” (in quotes) title. Nobody has offered any other plausible explanation. So anybody is free to offer another explanation of this artifact, I will be thrilled if anybody comes up with anything plausible,” the archaeologist concludes.
Read archaeologist Ventsislav Gergov’s full interview for ArchaeologyinBulgaria.com here:
Editorial note: ArchaeologyinBulgaria.com does not condone or otherwise encourage pseudo-science, conspiracy theories, or any deceiptful claims. The matter of this article should be seen for what it is – an artifact with an unknown function and purpose, and a curious conditional name, which remains just that – conditional.