It's possible that it is just a logical easy to build structure, but I've always wondered. There are other similarities too.
I seem to recall an attempt to cross the Atlantic with modern replicas of Egyptian style vessels but I don't recall if it was successful.
It's not sufficient to just say "this looks similar." You have to explain how the designs were transmitted, what else was or wasn't transmitted, why evidence is or isn't present in supporting records such as contemporary accounts. There is very strong presumption against pre-Columbian trans-oceanic contact (based in part of our knowledge of ancient shipbuilding techniques and maritime practices), so you need a very high burden of proof here. Vikings and Polynesians are exceptions to the rule here because we know they were both able to make the journey, there's corroborating evidence that's multifaceted, there's explanations of why the contact was ultimately transient in nature, etc.
In theory is possible. There is one species of Nicotiana native from Africa (Nicotiana africana). The problem is that this plant is a Namibian endemism, in the other coin of Africa. For people mastering the complicated process of embalm a body, with a trading area that extends to the entire Mediterranean sea, and taking a lot of precise steps and hassles to be sucessful, a local plant able to stop insect damage would had been noticed and treasured. We can speculate that the current Namibian populations are relict populations of a much wider distribution area, and that this is another white rhino. Maybe the north populations were wiped by the old Egyptian empire?, then the flower must appear painted somewhere or some obscure text should talk about such treasure.
And in any case, there is still the Cocaine issue. There are also some members of the family Erytroxylaceae native from Africa, but If you find three of the most popular drugs when putting a sample of a mummy in a machine, you should suspect that either the mummies were fake, or where real but used later to smuggle drugs, or that the drugs were into the machine previously (the laboratory has been used before for analyze drugs).
> “Since the initial work of Balabanova et. al., other studies have revealed the same drugs (cocaine, nicotine, and hashish) in Egyptian mummies, confirming the original results."
They were a bureaucratic society. To cross the central rainforest and the Kalahari desert to trade with South Africa and do not reflect it in their documents seems unlikely to me (but I'm not an expert in this field).
This said, finding a wild Nicotiana in Egypt today is a childs game. Nicotiana glauca, an escaped american species appears everywhere in all Mediterranean countries. Could easily slip into any local plant mix aiming to give some good ol' autenthicity to a modern mummy.
The first ships likely capable of making a crossing are the Chinese junks, followed by Polynesian outrigger canoes. The first European ships capable of making it are probably the Viking longships, which makes pre-Viking contact difficult to conceive, much less a sustained trading pattern. Furthermore, Phoenician ships were predominantly rowed, not sailed, which makes the journey especially hard to believe.
Unlikely to be related, but possibly, Tramadol was thought to be naturally produced by a root in Cameroon but then found to be in high levels in the soil, water, and other plants because people and their animals were consuming high quantities.
Essentially that's what's going on in this conversation.
By the way: http://foreignpolicy.com/2016/09/02/did-chinese-civilization...
For the record, I'm someone of various European ancestries, but I'm not hung up on some kind of European superiority complex.
"Consider the Earth's history as the old measure of the English yard, the distance from the King's nose to the tip of his outstretched hand. One stroke of a nail file on his middle finger erases human history."
Well, saying that Norte Chico gave the Ancient Egyptians a hand with skycrane techniques is pretty impossible. There's a wide gap between "we're not sure what the answer is" and "this wild theory is equally well-supported by the evidence."
I gave some details in another comment, but the shipbuilding technology simply didn't exist before around 700 or so to cross the Atlantic Ocean--not in Europe, nor in the Americas (It did exist in Asia, but the Polynesian expansion and experience strongly limits the space for Asian trans-Pacific contact). That creates a very strong prior against pre-Columbian trans-oceanic contact, one that requires more persuasive evidence than "I can interpret this as a New World relic in the Old World." The only theory that comes close to meeting that standard is the Polynesian contact theory.
The space of what is possible is overwhelmingly large, it frustrates me when "rationalism" means setting up these extreme categories of possible vs impossible, sane vs "crackpot", etc.
You say that with such certainty as if you were there.
All I’m saying is that a small bit of doubt is healthy.
Also it is a somewhat accepted opinion that Chinese and Polynesians may have travelled to and from the Americas, however, the evidence is inconclusive and they don't seem to have established long-term ties, so it's hard to say. Even more cultures may have discovered the Americas, such as Mali and Japan, but if they did, those expeditions were one-way
>> In the past year, Sun, a highly decorated scientist, has ignited a passionate online debate with claims that the founders of Chinese civilization were not in any sense Chinese but actually migrants from Egypt. He conceived of this connection in the 1990s while performing radiometric dating of ancient Chinese bronzes; to his surprise, their chemical composition more closely resembled those of ancient Egyptian bronzes than native Chinese ores.
iow the real story is probably weirder than we can imagine.
Most are sketchy at best, or have been proven spurious.
Meanwhile contamination or even a prank/hoax is quite likely. In fact if a lab tech had a big night and didn’t wash their hands properly, or one of their own hairs contaminated the sample, there you have it. Contrary to popular perception, one outlier result isn’t a breakthrough, replication is key.
> Of the nine mummies evaluated, all showed signs of cocaine and hashish Tetrahydrocannabinol), whereas all but one sampled positive for nicotine.
While I'm not saying you're incorrect- contamination seems so likely that I'd start investigating if this lab put anyone in prison over these sorts of tests- the article clearly says there were nine different mummies tested.
So not only would these people have had to identify the narcotic value of cannabis, tobacco and coca, they’d have to figure out how to press hashish, and process large amounts of coca leaves for tripanone, and then process that into cocaine base. In practice getting significant quantities of cocaine from coca without the intermediate chemistry isn’t feasible.