the ancient underwater pyramid structure at Yonaguni – page two

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Robert M. Schoch continues his Yonaguni investigation …



my own research on the Yonaguni Monument, one of the first things I found

is that the structure is, as far as I could determine, composed entirely

of solid “living” bedrock.

No part of the monument is constructed of separate blocks of rock that

have been placed into position. This is an important point, for carved

and arranged rock blocks would definitively indicate a man-made origin

for the structure – yet I could find no such evidence.

During my

initial two dives of September 1997 I was unable to determine, even in a

general way, the stone of which the Yonaguni Monument is composed. This

was due to the fact that the surfaces of the rocks are covered by various

organisms (algae, corals, sponges, and so forth)

that obscure the actual surfaces. I believe that this coating of organic

material tends to make the surfaces of the Yonaguni Monument appear more

regular and homogeneous than they actually are. This, in part, enhances

the impression that this must be an artificial, man-made structure.


some of my later dives I spent time scraping the organisms off the rocks

in several places, so as to gain views of the actual rock faces, and also

brought some samples of the rock to the surface. The

Yonaguni Monument is composed predominantly of medium to very fine sandstones

and mudstones of the Lower Miocene Yaeyama Group (the

rocks themselves were deposited about 20 million years ago).

an image of the underwater structure at Yonaguni Jima

These rocks contain numerous well-defined, parallel bedding

planes along which the layers easily separate.

The rocks of this group are also criss-crossed by numerous sets

of parallel and vertical (relative to the

horizontal bedding planes of the rocks) joints and fractures.

Yonaguni lies in an earthquake-prone region; such earthquakes tend

to fracture the rocks in a regular manner.

Copyright 1999 Robert M. Schoch.

The more

I compared the natural, but highly regular, weathering and erosional features

observed on the modern coast of the island with the structural characteristics

of the Yonaguni Monument, the more I became convinced that the Yonaguni

Monument is primarily the result of natural geological and geomorphological

processes at work.

On the surface I also found depressions and cavities forming naturally

that look exactly like the supposed “post

holes” that some researchers have noticed on the underwater

Yonaguni Monument. I have also spent a fair amount of time traveling the

length and breadth of Yonaguni Island so as to examine and gain an understanding

of the local geology and geomorphology of the island.

an image of the underwater structure at Yonaguni Jima


the southeast and northeast coasts of Yonaguni Island the Yaeyama

Group sandstones are abundantly exposed, and here I could observe

them weathering and eroding under current conditions.


became convinced that presently, at the surface, natural wave and

tidal action is responsible for eroding and removing the sandstones

in such a way that very regular step-like and terrace-like structures


Copyright 1999 Robert M. Schoch.

In fairness to Dr. Kimura’s position, I must point out that he believes

that at least some of the surface features that I here interpret as the

result of natural weathering and erosion are either man-made or were modified

by humans. However, I could not find any surface evidence (such

as tool marks on the rock surfaces or carved blocks that had been moved

into place) that, in my opinion, would substantiate his contention

of artificiality.

Of course,

I have had only a very short time to search for such evidence, and just

because I did not find it does not mean it does not exist. However, at

this time based on my own findings and analysis, I cannot agree with Dr.

Kimura’s conclusion that the Yonaguni Monument is primarily a man-made


My current working hypothesis is that the Yonaguni Monument is primarily

of natural origin; that is, it’s overall structure is the result

of natural geological and geomorphological processes. I think it should

be considered a primarily natural structure until more evidence is found

to the contrary. However, by no means do I feel that this is an absolutely

closed case. The question of its genesis – artificial versus natural – may not

be an all or nothing question.

an image of the underwater structure at Yonaguni Jima


should also consider the possibility that the Yonaguni Monument

is fundamentally a natural structure that was utilized, enhanced,

and modified by humans in ancient times.


Yonaguni Monument may even have been a quarry from which blocks

were cut, utilizing natural bedding, joint, and fracture planes

of the rock, and thence removed for the purpose of constructing

other structures which are long since gone.

Copyright 1999 Robert M. Schoch.

follow Robert Schoch’s continuing Yonaguni investigation on



further reading about the Yonaguni monument

and Ice Age civilisation …


Trushar, 1998. “Divers find world’s oldest

building.” The Sunday Times, London, (26

April 1998), page 4.


Graham, and Faiia, Santha, 1998,

Heaven’s Mirror: Quest for the Lost Civilization” London:

Michael Joseph.


Frank, 1997, “Underwater City found near

Japan” Ancient America, vol. 3, #17 (March/April

1997), pp. 2-6.


Hiroshi, 1997, “Bottom of the Ocean Ooparts

[Out of Place Artifacts]. Tokyo:

Futami Shobo, Publisher. 302 pages. ISBN 4-576-97087-9. [In Japanese.

The Yonaguni Monument and related structures

are discussed on pp. 11-46.]


Robert M., with McNally, Robert Aquinas 1999,

“Voices of the Rocks: A Scientist Looks at Catastrophes and Ancient

Civilizations” New York: Harmony, Crown Publishing Group, Random

House. The recently updated

(UK edtion) is now also available worldwide.



undersea relics near Okinawa offer proof of a sophisticated civilization

during the last ice age? Archeologists have long believed that civilization

as we define it — intelligent, tool-making, monument building, social

humans — began about 5,000 years ago. But submerged beneath the waves

near the Japanese island of Yonaguni is evidence that may well overturn

that long-held theory.

A small but persuasive number of scholars and scientists have long

thought that “advanced” societies

may have existed as long as 10,000 years ago. Their theories, however

well reasoned and defended, have been hamstrung by a lack of evidence.

But recent discoveries of man-made artifacts on the Pacific seafloor

may well prove to be the smoking gun that will propel this alternative

view of civilization to prominence”.


the evidence with ‘unique underwater footage’

of the Yonaguni monument

in the VHS video of the ‘History Channel’

July 2002 television programme

“Japan’s Mysterious Pyramids”


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take a look at our Yonaguni

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