As you know, we are still exploring the dig
established in the city called New York in the North American Sector of the Pangaean Supercontinent. In our last report, we noted discovery of many references to a “Big Apple,” and speculated this might be an agricultural deity of importance here.
Now we have made new discoveries that give us further insight into the religious beliefs of the ancient New Yorkans, as we have decided to call them. Indeed, findings within the recent week may completely rewrite everything we thought we knew about the indigenous peoples of this area.
We have discovered backyard shrines and indications that these people made burnt offerings to their deities.
This latest discovery was made in one of the residential areas that surround New York proper. It appears likely, although not yet certain, that the city was devoted primarily to enterprise, with few or no inhabitants, with workers living around its edges. What we have discovered is a number of what seem to be altars in the backyards that we have uncovered. Most of these, as may be imagined, are greatly deteriorated. However, enough remains intact that we may make reasonable deductions regarding their use.
The altars themselves range from elaborate, permanent constructions of stone or metal to small metal portable objects that would have been supported on a tripodal arrangement of legs. We have not yet ascertained whether the larger altars were constructed by wealthier individuals or, perhaps, were devoted to more important deities. The portable units could have been moved to different locations, so may have been dedicated to deities shared by the community as a whole. Perhaps they were moved from one site to another on a particular deity's feast day. Remnants of charcoal and
organic deposits within some of the altars indicate they were used to sacrifice animals, probably something akin to the “burnt offerings” referenced in surviving copies of bibles and other religious texts we have found.
We have also found ancient tools that apparently were used in conjunction with these altars. Most of course are badly deteriorated, but some are sufficiently intact as to allow more or less accurate interpretation of their uses. In particular, we have found knives – to be expected, since the sacrificial animals would have been brought to the altar while still alive – as well as long-handled instruments, closely resembling two-pronged forks. These latter may have been used to stab smaller sacrificial animals, which would indicate that small animals as well as large were sacrificed to whatever gods the indigenous peoples worshiped.
We have also found, curiously, long-handled pieces of flattened metals, something akin to primitive spatulas. Professor Havershaw believes these might have been employed in some kind of “spanking” ritual either before or immediately after the sacrifice, which would indicate some sort of “erotic” component to the sacrifice. However, Professor Watson-Smythe disagrees, since no other indications of a sado-sexual component exists. She believes the spatulate tools may have been nothing more than a means of tenderizing the meat of the smaller sacrificial creatures. Further exploration of the sites so far uncovered may solve the mystery.
We continue to explore New York, but we have also sent some of our team for pre-exploration of a site farther west, a place referred to as “Los Angeles.” We're told the translation of the name is “The Angels,” which may reference either the same or a competing religion to the one we have found in New York. We will of course continue to update you on our progress.