Ledenika is a cave in the Northwestern parts of the Balkan Mountains,16 km away from the Bulgarian city of Vratsa, its entrance being at 830m above sea level. It features an abundance of galleries and impressive karst formations including stalactites and stalagmites, the cave is about 300m long and contains ten separate halls. The biggest one is the Concert Hall, the way to it is through the Passage of Sinners. Only those whose heart is pure can pass through it, once the cave was full of water but now only a small lake has remained - the Lake of Wishes. The legend says if you dip your hand in the ice-cold water of the lake and make a wish. The first hall is the Antechamber, in winter and springtime this hall enchants with its ice crystal decoration that the cave is named after. For a few metres – through the Plaznyata Passage – you need to walk with head down – up until the tiny almost round hall –. Everything here is majestic and unique – the Crocodile, the Giant’s head, the Falcon, Santa Claus, from the big hall – through the iron bridge, the Big and Small Precipices and the Pelmets Passage – you arrive in the beautiful White Hall.
In here you can see the Mother-in-law’s Tongue, the Giant’s Wife, the Elephant, the highest point of the cave is called the Seventh Sky – accessible only to the most enthusiastic tourists. The temperature in the cave varies from –7°С to –15°С, not many animals can be seen other than bats, cave beetles, wood-lice and the unique “Ledenicus” or “Light-hater” insects. Little vegetation is adapted to the cave, only poorly developed lichens, the cave is part of the 100 Tourist Sites of Bulgaria, Bulgarian Tourist Union, Working hours - summer,8,30 to 12, 30am and 1,30 to 6, 00pm. Winter,8, 30am to 4, 00pm, seal available, Ledenika Peak on Graham Land in Antarctica is named after the cave. Amusement park Ledenika Caves in Bulgaria List of caves in Bulgaria
A stalagmite is a type of rock formation that rises from the floor of a cave due to the accumulation of material deposited on the floor from ceiling drippings. Stalagmites may be composed of amberat, minerals, peat, sand, the corresponding formation hanging down from the ceiling of a cave is a stalactite. Mnemonics have been developed for which word refers to type of formation, one is that stalactite has a C for ceiling. The most common stalagmites are speleothems, which form in limestone caves. This stalagmite formation occurs only under certain pH conditions within the underground cavern and they form through deposition of calcium carbonate and other minerals, which is precipitated from mineralized water solutions. Limestone is the form of calcium carbonate rock, which is dissolved by water that contains carbon dioxide. If stalactites – the ceiling formations – grow long enough to connect with stalagmites on the floor and dirt from human contact can stain the formation and change its color permanently.
Another type of stalagmite is formed in lava tubes while lava is still active inside, the mechanism of formation is similar to that of limestone stalagmites. A key difference with lava stalagmites is that once the lava has ceased flowing and this means if the stalagmite were to be broken it would never grow back. Stalagmites in lava tubes are rarer than their stalactite counterparts because during formation the dripping material falls onto still-moving lava floors that absorb or carry the material away, the generic term lavacicle has been applied to lava stalactites and stalagmites indiscriminately, and evolved from the word icicle. A common stalagmite found seasonally or year round in many caves is the ice stalagmite, commonly referred to as icicles, water seepage from the surface will penetrate into a cave and if temperatures are below freezing temperature, the water will collect on the floor into stalagmites. Deposition may directly from the freezing of water vapor. Similar to lava stalagmites, ice stalagmites form very quickly within hours or days, unlike lava stalagmites however, they may grow back as long as water and temperatures are suitable.
Ice stalagmites are more common than their stalactite counterparts because warmer air rises to the ceilings of caves, ice stalactites may form corresponding stalagmites below them, and given time, may grow together to form an ice column. Stalactites and stalagmites can form on concrete ceilings and floors, calcium carbonate deposition as a stalagmite occurs when the solution carries the calcium laden leachate solution to the ground under the concrete structure. Carbon dioxide is absorbed into the alkaline solution, which facilitates the chemical reactions to deposit calcium carbonate as a stalagmite. These stalagmites rarely grow taller than a few centimetres, secondary deposits, which create stalagmites, flowstone etc, outside the natural cave environment, are referred to as “calthemites”. These concrete derived secondary deposits can’t be referred to as “speleothems” due to the definition of the word, the largest known stalagmite in the world exceeds 70 metres in height and is located in Sơn Đoòng Cave, Vietnam
The Copper Age was originally defined as a transition between the Neolithic and the Bronze Age. The archaeological site of Belovode on the Rudnik mountain in Serbia contains the worlds oldest securely dated evidence of copper smelting from 5000 BCE, the multiple names result from multiple recognitions of the period. Originally, the term Bronze Age meant that either copper or bronze was being used as the hard substance for the manufacture of tools. In 1881, John Evans, recognizing that the use of copper often preceded the use of bronze and he did not include the transitional period in the tripartite system of Early and Late Bronze Age but placed it at the beginning outside of it. He did not, present it as a fourth age, in 1884, Gaetano Chierici, perhaps following the lead of Evans, renamed it in Italian as the Eneo-litica, or Bronze-stone transition. The phrase was never intended to mean that the period was the one in which both bronze and stone were used. The Copper Age features the use of copper, excluding bronze, litica simply names the Stone Age as the point from which the transition began and is not another -lithic age.
Subsequently, British scholars used either Evanss Copper Age or the term Eneolithic, around 1900, many writers began to substitute Chalcolithic for Eneolithic, to avoid the false segmentation. It was that the misunderstanding began among those who did not know Italian, the -lithic was seen as a new -lithic age, a part of the Stone Age in which copper was used, which may appear paradoxical. Today Copper Age and Chalcolithic are used synonymously to mean Evanss original definition of Copper Age, there was an independent invention of copper and bronze smelting first by Andean civilizations in South America extended by sea commerce to the Mesoamerican civilization in West Mexico. The literature of European archaeology, in general, avoids the use of Chalcolithic, the Copper Age in the Middle East and the Caucasus began in the late 5th millennium BCE and lasted for about a millennium before it gave rise to the Early Bronze Age. The transition from the European Copper Age to Bronze Age Europe occurs about the same time, an archaeological site in Serbia contains the oldest securely dated evidence of coppermaking from 7,500 years ago.
In Serbia, an axe was found at Prokuplje, which indicates that humans were using metals in Europe by 7,500 years ago. Knowledge of the use of copper was far more widespread than the metal itself, the European Battle Axe culture used stone axes modeled on copper axes, even with imitation mold marks carved in the stone. Ötzi the Iceman, who was found in the Ötztal Alps in 1991, examples of Chalcolithic cultures in Europe include Vila Nova de São Pedro and Los Millares on the Iberian Peninsula. Pottery of the Beaker people has found at both sites, dating to several centuries after copper-working began there. The Beaker culture appears to have copper and bronze technologies in Europe. The term Chalcolithic is not generally used by British prehistorians, who disagree whether it applies in the British context, in Bhirrana, the earliest Indus civilization site, copper bangles and arrowheads were found
Devetàshka cave is a huge karst cave around 7 km east of Letnitsa and 15 km northeast of Lovech, near the village of Devetaki on the east bank of the river Osam, in Bulgaria. The site has continuously occupied by Paleo humans for tens of thousands of years. Devetashka cave is located approximately 2 km from the village of Devetaki, a narrow path by the river lead from the village to the cave. It can be accessed directly via Road 301 along a 400 m long dirt road, the site is 35 m wide and 30 m high at the entrance. The cave widens after around 40 m, forming a hall with an area of 2,400 m2. Earliest traces of human presence back to the Middle Paleolithic around 70,000 years ago. The site contained one of the richest sources of Neolithic cultural artifacts, besides significant archaeological findings, Devetashka cave is provides a habitat for a wide diversity of faunal residents. During the breeding season of mammalian species in the cave from early June to the end of July, thirty-four species of mammals, four of which are included in the Red List and fifteen species of bats are to be found at the Devetashka cave.
Devetashka cave was shown in the action movie The Expendables 2, the Supreme Administrative Court of Bulgaria declared that several activities during filming violated Bulgarias environmental regulations. A contractor hired by The Expendables crew was subsequently fined for trimming the shrubbery in front of the site, after a fatal accident during the filming of a stunt, the production team again clashed with the authorities over damages to the cave. Loud noises, bright lights, crowds of people and fires in close proximity to the cave might have caused the displacement of large numbers of bats from the cave, however, by late 2012, the majority of the bats had returned to the cave. Media related to Devetashka cave at Wikimedia Commons Devetashka Cave
The cave bear was a species of bear that lived in Europe and Asia during the Pleistocene and became extinct about 24,000 years ago during the Last Glacial Maximum. Both the word cave and the scientific name spelaeus are used because fossils of species were mostly found in caves. This reflects the views of experts that cave bears may have spent more time in caves than the brown bear, Cave bear skeletons were first described in 1774 by Johann Friederich Esper in his book Newly Discovered Zoolites of Unknown Four Footed Animals. While scientists at the time considered that the skeletons could belong to apes, felids, or even dragons or unicorns, twenty years later, Johann Christian Rosenmüller, an anatomist at the Leipzig University, gave the species its binomial name. The bones were so numerous that most researchers had little regard for them, during World War I, with the scarcity of phosphate dung, earth from the caves where cave bear bones occurred were used as a source of phosphates. When the dragon caves in Austrias Steiermark region were exploited for this purpose, only the skulls, many caves in Central Europe have skeletons of cave bears inside, for example the Heinrichshöhle in Hemer, the Dechenhöhle in Iserlohn, Germany.
A complete skeleton, five complete skulls, and 18 other boness were found inside Jaskinia Niedźwiedzia in 1966 in Poland, in Romania, in a cave called Bears Cave,140 cave bear skeletons were discovered in 1983. Both the cave bear and the bear are thought to be descended from the Plio-Pleistocene Etruscan bear that lived about 5.3 Mya to 10,000 years ago. The last common ancestor of cave bears and brown bears lived between 1.2 and 1.4 Mya. The immediate precursor of the bear was probably Ursus deningeri. Ursus spelaeus deningeroides, while other authorities consider both taxa to be variants of the same species. Cave bears found in different regions vary in age, thus facilitating investigations into evolutionary trends, the three anterior premolars were gradually reduced, possibly in response to a largely vegetarian diet. In a fourth of the found in the Conturines, the third premolar is still present. The last remaining premolar became conjugated with the molars, enlarging the crown and granting it more cusps.
This phenomenon, known as molarization, improved the mastication capacities of the molars and this allowed the cave bear to gain more energy for hibernation, while eating less than its ancestors. The cave bear had a broad, domed skull with a steep forehead. Its stout body had long thighs, massive shins and in-turning feet, Cave bears were comparable in size to the largest modern-day bears. The average weight for males was 400 to 500 kilograms, with a specimen weighing 817 kg or more
It is the culmination of the Passion of Jesus, preceded by Lent, a forty-day period of fasting and penance. In Western Christianity, Eastertide, or the Easter Season, begins on Easter Sunday and lasts seven weeks, ending with the coming of the fiftieth day, Pentecost Sunday. In Eastern Christianity, the season of Pascha begins on Pascha and ends with the coming of the fortieth day, the Feast of the Ascension. The First Council of Nicaea established two rules, independence of the Jewish calendar and worldwide uniformity, which were the rules for Easter explicitly laid down by the council. No details for the computation were specified, these were worked out in practice and it has come to be the first Sunday after the ecclesiastical full moon that occurs on or soonest after 21 March, but calculations vary. Easter is linked to the Jewish Passover by much of its symbolism, in many languages, the words for Easter and Passover are identical or very similar. Easter customs vary across the Christian world, and include services, exclaiming the Paschal greeting, clipping the church.
The Easter lily, a symbol of the resurrection, traditionally decorates the area of churches on this day. Additional customs that have associated with Easter and are observed by both Christians and some non-Christians include egg hunting, the Easter Bunny, and Easter parades. There are various traditional Easter foods that vary regionally, however, it is possible that Bede was only speculating about the origin of the term since there is no firm evidence that such a goddess actually existed. In Greek and Latin, the Christian celebration was, and still is, called Πάσχα, the word originally denoted the Jewish festival known in English as Passover, commemorating the Jewish Exodus from slavery in Egypt. In most of the non-English speaking world, the feast is known by names derived from Greek, Pascha is a name by which Jesus himself is remembered in the Orthodox Church, especially in connection with his resurrection and with the season of its celebration. The New Testament states that the resurrection of Jesus, which Easter celebrates, is a foundation of the Christian faith, the resurrection established Jesus as the powerful Son of God and is cited as proof that God will judge the world in righteousness.
For those who trust in Jesus death and resurrection, death is swallowed up in victory, any person who chooses to follow Jesus receives a new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead. Through faith in the working of God those who follow Jesus are spiritually resurrected with him so that they may walk in a new way of life and receive eternal salvation. Easter is linked to the Passover and Exodus from Egypt recorded in the Old Testament through the Last Supper and crucifixion of Jesus that preceded the resurrection. According to the New Testament, Jesus gave the Passover meal a new meaning, as in the room during the Last Supper he prepared himself. He identified the matzah and cup of wine as his soon to be sacrificed
Anthropomorphism is the attribution of human traits and intentions to non-human entities and is considered to be an innate tendency of human psychology. Personification is the attribution of human form and characteristics to abstract concepts such as nations and natural forces like seasons. Both have ancient roots as storytelling and artistic devices, and most cultures have traditional fables with anthropomorphized animals as characters, people have routinely attributed human emotions and behavioural traits to wild as well as domestic animals. Anthropomorphism derives from its verb form anthropomorphize, itself derived from the Greek ánthrōpos and it is first attested in 1753, originally in reference to the heresy of applying a human form to the Christian God. One of the oldest known is a sculpture, the Löwenmensch figurine, Germany. It is not possible to say what these prehistoric artworks represent, in either case there is an element of anthropomorphism. This anthropomorphic art has been linked by archaeologist Steven Mithen with the emergence of more systematic hunting practices in the Upper Palaeolithic.
In religion and mythology, anthropomorphism refers to the perception of a divine being or beings in human form, ancient mythologies frequently represented the divine as deities with human forms and qualities. They resemble human beings not only in appearance and personality, they exhibited many human behaviors that were used to explain phenomena, creation. The deities fell in love, had children, fought battles, wielded weapons and they feasted on special foods, and sometimes required sacrifices of food and sacred objects to be made by human beings. Some anthropomorphic deities represented specific concepts, such as love, fertility, beauty. Anthropomorphic deities exhibited human qualities such as beauty and power, and sometimes human weaknesses such as greed, jealousy, Greek deities such as Zeus and Apollo often were depicted in human form exhibiting both commendable and despicable human traits. Anthropomorphism in this case is referred to as anthropotheism, from the perspective of adherents to religions in which humans were created in the form of the divine, the phenomenon may be considered theomorphism, or the giving of divine qualities to humans.
Anthropomorphism has cropped up as a Christian heresy, particularly prominently with the Audians in third century Syria, but in fourth century Egypt and tenth century Italy. This often was based on an interpretation of Genesis 1,27, So God created man in His own image, in the image of God created He him. Some religions and philosophers objected to anthropomorphic deities. Ethiopians say that their gods are snub–nosed and blackThracians that they are pale and he said that the greatest god resembles man neither in form nor in mind. Both Judaism and Islam reject an anthropomorphic deity, believing that God is beyond human comprehension, judaisms rejection of an anthropomorphic deity grew during the Hasmonean period, when Jewish belief incorporated some Greek philosophy. Judaisms rejection grew further after the Islamic Golden Age in the tenth century, hindus do not reject the concept of a deity in the abstract unmanifested, but note practical problems
Otters are carnivorous mammals in the subfamily Lutrinae. The 13 extant otter species are all semiaquatic, aquatic or marine, with diets based on fish, Lutrinae is a branch of the weasel family Mustelidae, which includes badgers, honey badgers, minks and wolverines. The word otter derives from the Old English word otor or oter and this, and cognate words in other Indo-European languages, ultimately stem from the Proto-Indo-European language root *wódr̥, which gave rise to the English word water. An otters den is called a holt or couch, male otters are called dogs or boars, females are called bitches or sows, and their offspring are called pups. The collective nouns for otters are bevy, lodge, romp or, the feces of otters are typically identified by their distinctive aroma, the smell of which has been described as ranging from freshly mown hay to putrefied fish, these are known as spraints. The gestation period in otters is about 60 to 86 days, the newborn pup is cared for by the bitch and older offspring.
Bitch otters reach sexual maturity at two years of age and males at approximately three years. The holt is built under tree roots or a rocky cairn and it is lined with moss and grass. After one month, the pup can leave the holt and after two months, it is able to swim, the pup lives with its family for approximately one year. Otters live up to 16 years, they are by nature playful and its usual source of food is fish, and further downriver, but it may sample frogs and birds. Otters have long, slim bodies and relatively short limbs and their most striking anatomical features are the powerful webbed feet used to swim, and their seal-like abilities holding breath underwater. Most have sharp claws on their feet and all except the sea otter have long, the 13 species range in adult size from 0.6 to 1.8 m in length and 1 to 45 kg in weight. The Oriental small-clawed otter is the smallest otter species and the giant otter and they have very soft, insulated underfur, which is protected by an outer layer of long guard hairs.
This traps a layer of air which keeps them dry, several otter species live in cold waters and have high metabolic rates to help keep them warm. European otters must eat 15% of their weight each day. In water as warm as 10 °C, an otter needs to catch 100 g of fish per hour to survive, most species hunt for three to five hours each day and nursing mothers up to eight hours each day. For most otters, fish is the staple of their diet and this is often supplemented by frogs and crabs. Some otters are expert at opening shellfish, and others feed on available small mammals or birds
Cave paintings are painted drawings on cave walls or ceilings, mainly of prehistoric origin, to some 40,000 years ago in Eurasia. The exact purpose of the Paleolithic cave paintings is not known, evidence suggests that they were not merely decorations of living areas since the caves in which they have been found do not have signs of ongoing habitation. They are located in areas of caves that are not easily accessible. Some theories hold that cave paintings may have been a way of communicating with others, the paintings are remarkably similar around the world, with animals being common subjects that give the most impressive images. Humans mainly appear as images of hands, mostly hand stencils made by blowing pigment on a hand held to the wall. The earliest known cave paintings/drawings of animals are at least 35,000 years old and are found in Pettakere cave on the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia, previously it was believed that the earliest paintings were in Europe. The earliest non-figurative rock art dates back to approximately 40,000 years ago, nearly 340 caves have now been discovered in France and Spain that contain art from prehistoric times.
But subsequent technology has made it possible to date the paintings by sampling the pigment itself, the choice of subject matter can indicate chronology. For instance, the reindeer depicted in the Spanish cave of Cueva de las Monedas places the drawings in the last Ice Age. The oldest date given to a cave painting is now a pig that has a minimum age of 35,400 years old at Pettakere cave in Sulawesi. Indonesian and Australian scientists have dated other non-figurative paintings on the walls to be approximately 40,000 years old, the method they used to confirm this was dating the age of the stalactites that formed over the top of the paintings. The art is similar in style and method to that of the Indonesian caves as there were hand stencils and this date coincides with the earliest known evidence for Homo sapiens in Europe. Because of the cave arts age, some scientists have conjectured that the paintings may have made by Neanderthals. The earliest known European figurative cave paintings are those of Chauvet Cave in France and these paintings date to earlier than 30,000 BCE according to radiocarbon dating.
Some researchers believe the drawings are too advanced for this era, the radiocarbon dates from these samples show that there were two periods of creation in Chauvet,35,000 years ago and 30,000 years ago. In 2009, cavers discovered drawings in Coliboaia Cave in Romania, an initial dating puts the age of an image in the same range as Chauvet, about 32,000 years old. Some caves probably continued to be painted over a period of thousands of years. This was created roughly between 10,000 and 5,500 years ago, and painted in rock shelters under cliffs or shallow caves, though individual figures are less naturalistic, they are grouped in coherent grouped compositions to a much greater degree