Ruins in the ‘Stans: Evidence of a Lost Civilization in Central Asia

16 Pages Posted: 3 Sep 2020

Date Written: August 19, 2020


In the 1950s, Viktor Sarianidi discovered the ruins of an ancient civilization known as the Bactrian-Margina Archaeological Complex (BMAC) centered in the Murghab Oasis of Turkmenistan. Sarianidi believed the people who settled in this region had migrated east from Anatolia by way of Mesopotamia in search of arable land. Others argue this civilization, which is also known as the Oxus Civilization, was indigenous to the region preceded by earlier civilizations dating back to the seventh millennium BCE. An analysis of archaeological sites in Central Asia reveals that relatively few are aligned to the cardinal points or in astronomical directions such as solstices or lunar standstills. Using Charles Hapgood’s theory of crustal displacement as a working hypothesis, almost two-dozen sites are shown to reference previous locations of the North Pole. We propose that these sites were first established tens of thousands of years ago when the climate was less arid than it is today and that the Oxus and preceding civilizations in this region were the descendants of an even earlier civilization that existed up until the time of the last ice age.

Suggested Citation

Carlotto, Mark, Ruins in the ‘Stans: Evidence of a Lost Civilization in Central Asia (August 19, 2020). Available at SSRN: or

Do you have a job opening that you would like to promote on SSRN?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics