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Origyptian comment
"Honestly, Mike, when I do a google search for "malta cart ruts", I see few differences in texture between the tracks vs. outside the tracks. And when we get to other geographic locations such as Turkey, I see far less evidence of any activity between the tracks. So I'm not sure what you mean by "intellectually honest on this point". All I'm doing is looking at the images and reporting what I see.

For those few images that do show clear depressions between the ruts, how can you be so sure that those ruts depressions weren't created by humans walking between the ruts as faux road markers that were already ancient?

In my intellectually honest assessment, the evidence is far too inconsistent to automatically lump all ruts into indicating wheeled carts that were drawn by animals when only a minority of ruts show clear evidence of such depressions between them and it's not possible to age the ruts or those broader depressions.

Meanwhile, I'm still waiting to hear your explanation of how thousands of cart runs could possibly follow exactly the same path from the very first pass along a given stretch of bedrock in order to create such sharply defined ruts. How can an animal be trained to follow such a precise path each and every time? For that matter, WHY would an animal be trained to do that? Respectfully, I would assume that your engineering background allows you to recognize the problematic nature of such deep ruts in stone with a consistent width that would cause wheels to sieze on a curved path. I cannot see how anyone that's "intellectually honest" can fathom a pragmatic scenario where such a thing would happen even once, let alone the many dozens (hundreds?) of ruts we see not only in Malta but other places on the planet."

I just said that considering only Clapham Junction it was intellectually honest to conclude that the case is inconclusive due to the local messy terrain totally eroded, with so many random bumps, holes and cracks that as you said there are "few differences in texture between the tracks vs. outside the tracks".
That's all.
Now, outside Clapham and in Malta, I said there are objectively a minority of ruts pairs with traces inside and a majority without, but they exist anyway.(See book "Cart-Ruts and their impact on the Maltese landscape, page 10).It asks question but does not allow to reject totally the solution of oxcarts, whereas in the same time it requires to imagine other solutions. Moreover in some places there are both types in the same area, with and without traces inside, so what? (same book, pages 34-35).
I do not pretend all cart ruts in the world were created by repeated passages of neolithic oxcarts. I just don't know. I just speak about a place I visited, Clapham Junction, seeming to have been a quarry, and exposing just some opinions about this place. Elswhere I admit I don't know.

And in the case of Clapham Junction, I do think that tracks were defined to optimize quarry work and were first created shallow to initiate paths, then became deeper and deeper after usage.
It seem to me possible to consider that the cutting benches I saw were not deeply cut, maybe only one layer so that after a series of blocks transported down along one track (with brake system and no oxen here), a second one was created parallel for next blocks series and so on.
At Clapham it seem to me possible to imagine that the tracks may have been used laden downhill and unladen uphill.
(Excellent overall twofold photo of Clapham Junction in same book pages 28-29, network of crossing benches and tracks is clearly visible, if not a solution for you, would you have another explanation? A neolithic racing place with random traces never reused?)

As for the impossibilty you see in creating such tracks by respecting precise repeated passages, it is exactly what youn can see on some roman tracks and this is exactly what people do when driving 4x4 on dirt tracks.

This being said, it is obvious that many tracks we see in Malta would require so large diameter wheels that they would generate important efforts of friction on the wheel rim in contact with the edges of rail in a little squeezed curves, leading to blocking and break, then accident. That is clear. This may explain why many ruts pairs may have been decomissioned when becoming too deep and replaced by new ones created parallel beside, which, in some places, could be reached from former ones when needed by communication nodes, so numerous in this island. That could be an explanation.
On the other hand, carts running once in very soft material can print a slightly too deep track with frictions in edges of wheel without preventing the rotation. Ok.

But why running so numerous carts or other system on soft muddy soil? Which activity could justify this hazardous transport? Catastrophe? Which one? When? Starting point, End point? It is relatively easy to concentrate on a specific technical explanation when you keep out of any connection from the historical context of the place. Please expose your global scenario, why so many people would run once along random paths on muddy soil in Malta and when?

Therefore the intellectual trap I can see here is to focus on only one solution that rules out all the others, leading us in an arbitrary dead end. I always try to avoid this situation and try to keep eyes and mind wide open. It is very difficult to build a set of mutually compatible solutions, but often, the truth may emerge from this state of mind.

Are you satisfied with these answers? I do hope, but I just can't say more and do not want to come in hard useless discussion blocking everyone on it's view without further exchanges. After all your view maybe better. Or mine. Who knows?

Michel Demaria (retired engineer, France)



Edited 5 time(s). Last edit at 29-Nov-17 19:26 by Mike D.

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Subject Views Written By Posted
Clapham Junction Malta 1923 Rstevens1701 16-Oct-17 15:26
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 524 Origyptian 16-Oct-17 18:45
this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 397 Racho 16-Oct-17 22:45
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 497 Tsurugi 17-Oct-17 04:55
Not carts. 405 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 07:14
Re: Not carts. 337 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 15:00
Re: Not carts. 312 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 20:17
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 320 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 07:28
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 320 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 08:29
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 276 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 15:08
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 298 Jon Ellison 17-Oct-17 16:56
ships on land 295 molder 17-Oct-17 22:43
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 252 molder 18-Oct-17 12:22
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 306 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 13:00
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 283 Jon Ellison 18-Oct-17 17:23
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 283 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 18:26
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 286 Jon Ellison 18-Oct-17 19:01
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 245 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:44
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 224 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 05:36
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 346 molder 08-Nov-17 10:34
Re: ships on land thousands of slaves dug tracks at corinth 206 Tsurugi 09-Nov-17 05:55
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 257 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 01:53
Re: this is at odds with Newearth/Russian scientist findings/conclusions 212 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:47
Black Tracks 304 Barbelo 19-Oct-17 01:59
Re: Black Tracks 308 randompHactor 19-Oct-17 02:16
Re: Black Tracks 365 Barbelo 21-Oct-17 00:20
Re: Black Tracks 209 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 03:51
Turkey Tracks 308 Barbelo 17-Oct-17 22:51
Re: Turkey Tracks 329 Origyptian 17-Oct-17 23:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 249 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 02:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 290 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 02:07
Re: Turkey Tracks 297 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 03:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 280 Origyptian 18-Oct-17 04:22
Re: Turkey Tracks 357 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 05:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 337 Barbelo 18-Oct-17 23:54
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 263 Jon Ellison 19-Oct-17 01:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 2 245 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 19:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 192 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 04:07
Re: Turkey Tracks 209 Barbelo 07-Nov-17 05:00
Re: Turkey Tracks 243 Tsurugi 07-Nov-17 18:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 225 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 19:15
Re: Turkey Tracks 212 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 19:20
Re: Turkey Tracks 227 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 20:03
Re: Turkey Tracks 243 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 20:12
Re: Turkey Tracks 286 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 20:34
Re: Turkey Tracks 243 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 21:21
Re: Turkey Tracks 230 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 22:44
Re: Turkey Tracks 210 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 22:51
Re: Turkey Tracks 347 Origyptian 07-Nov-17 22:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 230 Jon Ellison 07-Nov-17 23:52
Re: Turkey Tracks 311 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:38
Re: Turkey Tracks 278 Jon Ellison 08-Nov-17 09:58
Re: Turkey Tracks 209 Tsurugi 09-Nov-17 02:40
Re: Turkey Tracks 392 Jon Ellison 09-Nov-17 08:08
Re: Turkey Tracks 295 Tsurugi 25-Nov-17 08:10
Re: Turkey Tracks 235 Mike D 26-Nov-17 16:57
Re: Turkey Tracks 195 Jon Ellison 26-Nov-17 18:08
Re: Turkey Tracks 270 Mike D 27-Nov-17 09:47
Re: Turkey Tracks 253 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:16
Re: Turkey Tracks 222 Barbelo 07-Nov-17 21:26
Re: Turkey Tracks 310 Tsurugi 08-Nov-17 08:46
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 217 Anonymous User 07-Nov-17 22:07
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 344 Mike D 25-Nov-17 13:44
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 235 molder 25-Nov-17 20:51
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 226 Mike D 26-Nov-17 12:46
The Diolkos 205 molder 26-Nov-17 21:36
Re: The Diolkos 208 Mike D 27-Nov-17 10:03
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 257 Mike D 26-Nov-17 13:15
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 220 Tsurugi 27-Nov-17 09:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 227 Mike D 27-Nov-17 10:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 247 Jon Ellison 27-Nov-17 11:07
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 239 Mike D 27-Nov-17 16:27
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 224 Jon Ellison 27-Nov-17 18:32
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 205 Mike D 28-Nov-17 10:05
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 206 Jon Ellison 28-Nov-17 11:03
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 239 Mike D 28-Nov-17 11:09
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 201 Jon Ellison 28-Nov-17 13:43
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 217 Mike D 28-Nov-17 14:55
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 175 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 16:05
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 206 Mike D 28-Nov-17 18:22
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 216 Origyptian 29-Nov-17 03:16
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 317 Mike D 29-Nov-17 09:54
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 248 Origyptian 29-Nov-17 15:06
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 163 Mike D 30-Nov-17 11:25
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 182 Jon Ellison 30-Nov-17 12:41
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 183 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 13:56
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 259 Mike D 30-Nov-17 14:11
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 357 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 15:32
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 209 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 15:49
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 199 Mike D 28-Nov-17 18:28
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 240 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 04:50
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 230 Mike D 28-Nov-17 10:46
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 203 Origyptian 27-Nov-17 15:48
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 336 Mike D 27-Nov-17 16:40
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 206 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 05:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 233 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:50
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 194 Origyptian 28-Nov-17 15:34
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 236 Mike D 29-Nov-17 18:23
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 197 Origyptian 30-Nov-17 05:15
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 215 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 05:09
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 196 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:44
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 229 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 18:18
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 488 Audrey 28-Nov-17 03:14
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 223 Mike D 28-Nov-17 09:39
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 245 Tsurugi 28-Nov-17 18:30
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 226 molder 28-Nov-17 21:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 452 molder 18-Nov-17 22:20
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 255 Mike D 23-Nov-17 21:35
Re: Clapham Junction Malta 231 Mike D 23-Nov-17 21:46
Re: Chariot Tracks on The Streets of Pompeii 216 molder 30-Nov-17 05:22
Re: Chariot Tracks on The Streets of Pompeii 276 Mike D 30-Nov-17 10:59


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