The Acceleration of Ancient Monument Decay: Fomenko and Archeology (H:FoS? Vol.1 Ch.1.13.3)

This article examines the claims made by Fomenko in Volume 1 of History: Fiction or Science?, Ch. 1.13.3 – “The allegedly accelerated destruction of the “ancient” monuments”.

Claims: 10
Undetermined: 3
Supported: 3
Contradicted: 4

Multi-claims: 3, 4

Total Determined: 7/10 (70%)
Supported: 3/7 (42.85%)
Contradicted: 4/7 (57.14%)

As of right now, Fomenko’s grade on this part is 42.85% (3/7) which is an F.

Fomenko’s overall grade is shown on the overview article: Examining Fomenko’s New Chronology.

Fomenko’s Sources

Original Russian

[144] – “Вокруг Колизея”. – Газета “Известия”, 1977, 18 мая.

[207] – Грослие Б. “Борободур. Величайшее в мире средоточие буддийской скульптуры подвергается разрушению”. – Журнал “Курьер ЮНЕСКО”. 1968. No.6, с.23-27.

[227] – Дамаскин Иоанн. “Три защитительных слова против порицающих святые иконы или изображения”. – СПб., 1893. Английское издание: “John Damascene on Holy Images followed by three Sermons of the Assumption”. – T.Baker, London, 1898.

[456] – “Курьер ЮНЕСКО” (Журнал). 1968. No.12.

English Translation

[144] – “Around the Colosseum”. – Newspaper “Izvestia”, 1977, May 18.

[207] – Groslie B. “Borobodur. The world’s greatest center of Buddhist sculpture is being destroyed.” – The UNESCO Courier magazine. 1968.No.6, p.23-27.

[227] – Damascene John. “Three words of defense against those who condemn holy icons or images.” – SPb., 1893. English edition: “John Damascene on Holy Images followed by three Sermons of the Assumption”. – T.Baker, London, 1898.

[456] – The UNESCO Courier (Magazine). 1968.No.12.


The Examination

Claim 1:

“The archaeologists of the XX century have noticed a rather odd tendency. The overwhelming majority of the ancient monuments report deterioration in their condition that allegedly started two or three hundred years ago (from the moment their study began, in other words), and has become more intense than during the preceding centuries and even millennia.”

Claim 1 is undetermined.

What is the source for this?

I did find a scholar saying the acceleration began about 100 years ago.[9, p.344] Who says 200-300 though?

Claim 2:

“The examples are widely known: the Theatre of Epidaurus, Parthenon, the Coliseum, the palaces of Venice, etc. ([227], [144], [207], [456]).”

Claim 2 is supported.

While I haven’t been able to check Fomenko’s sources, I have found some articles that support what he’s saying.[3], [4]

Claim 3:

“A SPHINX IN PERIL. The famous figure of the El Giza sphinx in Egypt has stood steadfast for five millennia. However, pollution has afflicted it terribly. A large piece of the sculpture (a paw) has fallen off. The reasons for this are as follows: high humidity, salty ground, and, primarily, the accumulation of sewage around the sphinx that isn’t filtered in any way at all.”

No citation was attached directly to this quote. I figure it was originally in Russian because a search for it only shows Fomenko’s book in the results.

Claim 3 is supported and contradicted.

Claim 3 is supported in that pollution has apparently taken a heavy toll on the sphinx.[5]

Claim 3 is contradicted in that “a paw” has never fallen off. Only some stone has fallen off from one of the paws, not the entire paw itself.[6]

“Today, the Sphinx is continuing to deteriorate thanks to wind, humidity, and pollution. Restoration efforts have been ongoing since the mid-1900s, some of which failed and ultimately caused more damage to the Sphinx.
In 2007, authorities learned that the local water table under the statue was rising due to sewage being dumped in a nearby canal. The moisture ultimately spread through the porous limestone of the structure, causing the rock to crumble and break away in large flakes in some cases. Authorities installed pumps close to the Great Sphinx, diverting the groundwater and saving the relic from further destruction.”
HISTORY (2018)[5]

“The Sphinx restoration team saw parts of this deep fissure when they replaced some of Baraize’s masonry on the south hind paw, and when the stones fell away from the north hind paw in 1981.”
Mark Lehner (1997)[6]

Claim 4:

“It is nevertheless supposed to have stood for five thousand years without any problems whatsoever.”

Claim 4 is contradicted and contradicted.

It has not stood the whole time “without any problems whatsoever”. Reportedly, three major restoration efforts were made prior to the 20th century.[7], [8]

“…the statue’s worn, patched surface, … had been subjected to at least five major restoration efforts since 1,400 B.C.”
Evan Hadingham (2010)[7]

Secondly, 5000 years is about 500 too many for the commonly accepted age of the Sphinx. I mark this as contradicted because 500 years is no small amount of time to get wrong.

Claim 5:

“This condition of deterioration is usually explained by the negative effect of modern industry” ([144], [456]).”

Claim 5 is supported.

From what I’ve read on this so far, this does appear to be true. I haven’t been able to access Fomenko’s sources though.

Claim 6:

“However, as far as we know, there has been no quantitative research conducted to this day, as to whether or not modern industry afflicts ancient constructions made of stone.”

Claim 6 is contradicted.

They say “as far as we know” but determining if that’s supported or contradicted is nearly impossible. So I’m treating Claim 6 as if that bit wasn’t there.

It seems to me to be well established that modern industry can and does afflict ancient constructs.[9], [10]

Claim 7:

“One logically assumes all of these buildings to be a lot more recent than what the Scaligerian chronology tells us.”

Claim 7 is undetermined.

Is this really the logical conclusion?

Claim 8:

“They are subject to erosion, and have a constant natural destruction rate, which is rather high.”

Claim 8 is undetermined.

Claim 6 criticizes the “modern acceleration” explaining because they didn’t think any research had been done to support the idea. What research has been done to support the idea that the destruction rate is constant and rather high?



[1] – H:FoS1

[2] – Accessed 10 Nov. 2021.

[3] – Anonymous. “Climate Change Threatens European Landmarks” (NPR, 17 Aug. 2007). Accessed 14 Nov. 2021.

[4] – Kampouris, Nick. “Study Suggests British Museum Has Caused More Damage to Parthenon Sculptures than Athens’ Air Pollution” (Greek Reporter, 11 Dec. 2019). Accessed 14 Nov. 2021.

[5] – Editors. “The Sphinx” (HISTORY, 4 Jan. 2018). Accessed Nov. 15 2021.

[6] – “Responses to Your Questions” (PBS, 10 Feb. 1997). Accessed 15 Nov. 2021.

[7] – Hadingham, Evan. “Uncovering Secrets of the Sphinx” (Smithsonian Magazine, Feb. 2010). Accessed 15 Nov. 2021.

[8] – Hawass, Zahi. “HISTORY OF THE CONSERVATION OF THE SPHINX”. Accessed 15 Nov. 2021.

[9] – Yocom, John E. “AIR POLLUTION DAMAGE TO BUILDINGS ON THE ACROPOLIS” (1979). Accessed 15 Nov. 2021.

[10] – Mink, John. “Top 5 Endangered Heritage Sites – Acid Rain” (9 Jan. 2009). Accessed 15 Nov. 2021.


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