So I'm doing some searches on the internet; the last sentence in the 
video means:

Credo quia absurdum--I believe it because it is absurd

It does seem like a spoof - accidentally picking up the sound patterns 
on the vase as the potter turned his wheel? Must have been quite the 
cone on the other end of the stick, and the potter wasn't really 
holding the stick? Because then he would have dampened the frequencies? 
Maybe it was a very long
metal stick and he was holding it right close to the pottery? Oh my 

["philippe delaite" archeologist] doesn't turn up much in Google. I 
couldn't make out the name of the University that they quote at the 
beginning of the piece, and in the middle, for that matter, when they 
say that the University is going to be releasing a disc...

Anyone find or hear of anything else? Fun stuff...I *want* to believe...

If it is a spoof, they spoofers were quite correct in naming South 
America; it reminded me immediately of this sort of thing in Central 


   [This discussion originally appeared on the Alt.Sci.Physics.Acoustics 
Newsgroup. Some additional comments have been collected via email by 
correspondent Wayne Van Kirk. My thanks to Wayne for forwarding this 

At least two structures at the Mayan ruins of Chichen Itza in Mexican 
display unusual and unexplained acoustical properties.

1) The Great Ballcourt:

The Great Ballcourt is 545 feet long and 225 feet wide overall. It has 
no vault, no continuity between the walls and is totally open to the 

Each end has a raised "temple" area. A whisper from end can be heard 
clearly at the other end 500 feet away and through the length and 
breath of the court. The sound waves are unaffected by wind direction 
or time of day/night. Archaeologists engaged in the reconstruction 
noted that the sound transmission became stronger and clearer as they 
proceeded. In 1931 Leopold Stokowski spent 4 days at the site to 
determine the acoustic principals that could be applied to an open-air 
concert theater he was designing.

Stokowski failed to learn the secret.

2) The Castillo:

This structure is a temple that looks like a pyramid and is the one 
most commonly pictured on travel brochures for the Mexican Yucatan. 
Apparently if you stand facing the foot of the temple and shout the 
echo comes back as a piercing shriek. Also, a person standing on the 
top step can speak in a normal voice and be heard by those at ground 
level for some distance. This quality is also shared by another Mayan 
pyramid at Tikal [snip]

Alyssa Ryvers

Composer / Sound Engineer
Music North
On 20-Feb-06, at 12:28 PM, Language Laboratories and Archives wrote:

> I'm not sure how much I believe this, but it is certainly interesting. 
> (The pottery is from South America.)
> Barbara Need
> Manager (SS4), Computer Support, Archivist
>> LINGUIST List: Vol-17-552. Mon Feb 20 2006. ISSN: 1068 - 4875.
>> Editor for this issue: Amy Renaud <[log in to unmask]>
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>> ===========================Directory==============================
>> 1)
>> Date: 19-Feb-2006
>> From: Mike Matloff < [log in to unmask] >
>> Subject: 6500-year-old voices recorded in pottery!
>> -------------------------Message 1 ----------------------------------
>> Date: Mon, 20 Feb 2006 07:35:55
>> From: Mike Matloff < [log in to unmask] >
>> Subject: 6500-year-old voices recorded in pottery!
>> Description from The Raw Feed (
>> 'Belgian researchers have been able to use computer scans of the 
>> grooves in
>> 6,500-year-old pottery to extract sounds -- including talking and 
>> laughter
>> -- made by the vibrations of the tools used to make the pottery.'
>> Here's the link to the video:
>> It's only available in French right now, but even if you don't speak 
>> French
>> I think you can get the general gist and hear the 'playback'!
>> Mike
>> Linguistic Field(s): Anthropological Linguistics
>>                      General Linguistics
>> -----------------------------------------------------------
>> LINGUIST List: Vol-17-552