Trovants, the living stones of Romania
From school I remember they were teaching us that "life is one of the forms of protein bodies's existence ...", but according to recent observations and discoveries, it is not quite so. Today, we talk about the living stones that do grow, move, and even multiply. Are you surprised that this is even possible? Read further...
In Southern and Central Romania there are some very unusual and amazing stones, which are able to grow, move from place to place and even to multiply. These stones are called trovants. From outside they look no different than any other ordinary boulder of streamlined or round shape with no sharp corners. However, after the rain the stones begin to grow significantly increasing in their size. Each trovant that weighs only a few pounds, may eventually grow into a huge boulder weighing several tons. Small stones grow large quickly.
Trovants consist mainly of sandstone. If you cut a stone in half, you will find the age rings like trees have. However, the chemical composition of trovants have nothing to do with plants. These are the rocks. Scientists try to explain their growth phenomenon by a high content of mineral salts, which are part of these stones. When a trovant's surface gets wet, these chemicals are expanding and putting pressure on cemented sand, making the stone to "grow".
Trovants though have one feature that has not yet been explained by the geologists. "Living" stones are not only growing, but also are reproducing themselves by budding. The process goes as follows: when the stone gets wet a bulge appears on its surface and it grows with time, and when it gets big enough, it breaks off from the parent rock. The most amazing thing is that the new stones have the same structure as the parent rock has. Scientists can not understand how it actually gets a core. Some experts even suggested that trovants are unknown to science non-organic forms of life.
Some trovants have a fantastic ability to move from place to place. Local residents observed these unusual properties of trovants for centuries, got used to them and do not even pay much attention to this phenomenon. Before rising stones were used as building material for tombstones in cemeteries. Today trovants are one of the attractions in central Romania. The "living" rocks are so many that the locals are making souvenirs from them and then sell to tourists that come to visit.
The largest cluster of Romanian trovants is in Valcea region. Due to the great interest of tourists in the village of Costesti local authorities created in 2006, the only open air museum in Romania, where the biggest collection of trovants is displayed. Here you may find the "living" stones of various shapes, sizes and colors.
Living Stones of Death Valley
Death Valley, United States National Park is located in California, on the border with Nevada. This area is known as the hottest place on earth, and as a habitat of living stones, which are moving on their own through the desert, leaving behind a long trail.
Over the past 50 years, scientists have observed the spontaneous displacement of several hundred stones from the size of a soccer ball up to half a ton, which were moving in different directions, leaving visible marks behind. Stones sometimes were moving straight, then turning, then crossing their own trail, sometimes individually, sometimes in groups. Sometimes a group of stones moved along parallel paths.
The running rocks have been studied for over fifty years. But none of the hypotheses about the nature of this phenomenon does not give any plausible explanation of what is happening.
Buddha Stone in Tibet
In Tibet, the monks of the ancient Northern monastery are composing the so-called biography of Stone of Buddha for a half millennia. On a rock, according to legend, there are imprints of his hands. This rock weighs 1100 kilograms. Despite its heavy weight it rises to a height of 2565 meters uphill on its own without any assistance and goes back down in a spiral trajectory. Each ascent-descent takes 16 years accurately.
Blue Stone of happiness in Russia
The world's largest moving stone is legendary Blue-stone, found in Russia, on the coast of Lake Pleshcheeva under Pereslavl. In dark moonless nights it glows with blue light, and in winter it is never covered by snow for too long.
According to ancient Russian tradition, there is a living spirit in it that grants dreams and wishes. Even today, the gifts are scattered around it from people waiting for a miracle, coins and flowers.
In terms of geology, it is an ordinary large gray-blue boulder, fine-grained quartz biotite schist, brought here in ancient times by a mighty glacier. But it is much more interesting to look at it from the point of view of history and find out why it is of such a glory ...
A couple of thousand years ago, the pagan tribes of Merians (Finno-Ugric group) populated the shores of Lake Pleshcheeva, slightly changing its neighborhood - in particular, filling up a few hills and leveling their pics. On top of one of the hill a large boulder of unusual color was found.
Perhaps the pagans brought it there, believing that the spirit of a deity lives in it. Maybe it just happened to be by the will of nature. It is not so important. Later the territory was populated by Slavic people that called it Yarilin mountain and the boulder on its top Blue-stone.
It was considered the heart of a pagan god, and people worshiped it, in every way decorated it, brought sacrifices and circling in dance around the boulder.
When Christianity came to Russia, the followers of the new religion didn't like these dances, and "sinful" stone was solemnly and publicly cleared up from the hill. Pagans revolted in protest and even set on fire the nearest town. Revolt, of course was suppressed (by the way, by the soldiers of the notorious Yuri Dolgoruky) and stone was not returned to its place, but the Merians cursed the place and said that the stone still won't let anybody in its place.
And it didn't! They tried to build on Mount Yarilin a wooden church, it got burned. Then they were trying to move there the residence of Prince Alexander Nevsky , but it collapsed (though the mountain was renamed to Alexander). Then the monastery was built that did not last long.
Priests officially announced that the stone is inhabited by evil spirits, and promised to all its fans to burn in hell. But the number of the fans was not not reducing, especially when close to the defeated boulder suddenly appeared a water spring.
In the XVII century, one of the deacons personally dug a deep pit, where he threw away the "cursed" stone and covered it with earth to be sure. This is when the 12-ton boulder for the first time revealed itself and showed its character: it didn't like under the ground and in ten years ... it just came back where it was.
Of course, this has not gone unnoticed and the "demonic" stone again pulled people's attention to worship and annual pagan revels in Peter's day in June.
Another attempt by the church to deal with unruly rock was made in winter 1788, when the Blue-Stone was decided to be taken via the frozen lake to a newly church in construction St. Dukhovskoi and to be immured in the foundation of its steeple. On the way there, the ice underneath broke and the stone went under water five-meter deep. The priests were not too upset on the contrary. However, the unusual boulder didn't like to stay there either.
When the rumor started spreading by some local fishermen that they saw the rock slowly moving to its native shore and the mountain, nobody was believing them, you never know what you can imagine even in the clear water, especially the depth was not big, and it was moving very slowly.
But in less than 50 years it came back again. This time it didn't climb up the hill, maybe it was too tired....it stopped at the foot of the hill, where many pilgrims and tourists can see it even today.
Nowadays the restless blue boulder keeps on crawling slowly. Photos of fifties of the last century , captured it on the shore of the lake, and thirty years later the stone was at a distance of a hundred yards from the former residence. Today, it is separated from the hill with 1/3 km. It probably gets annoyed by tourists and sometimes is burrowing into the ground. Today above the ground is visible only its top 20 cm (and not so long ago, he towered almost a couple of meters) and the locals predict the end of the world if the stone decides to leave people.
How do they do it?
There are many theories and guesses on why and how the stones are moving. Scientists for many years are experimenting, trying to recreate the conditions for the movement of stones in laboratories. So far we can say for sure only one fact: the mystery of walking stones is not solved. Existing versions of today are not yet able to satisfy the serious scientists. The search for clues of life manifestations of seemingly lifeless objects continues.
Meanwhile, across the Earth stones keep on falling, leaving distinct traces, climbing the mountains, wandering around the neighborhood, going deep into the ground and back into the sunlight, that is living their mysterious lives.
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