Revisiting The Bosnian Pyramid Scheme

Checking in with the man who says he discovered an advanced ancient civilization.


In 2008, Discover profiled amateur archaeologist Sam Osmanagich, who claimed to have discovered the oldest and largest pyramids in the world. Located near the Bosnian city of Visoko and billed as “the most monumental construction complex ever built on the face of the planet,” the pyramids were allegedly made by a highly advanced civilization some 12,000 years ago.

While Osmanagich had no evidence, he did gather worldwide media attention, hundreds of volunteers aiding his excavation and legions of visitors to his so-called “pyramid valley.” The Bosnian government was thrilled with the boost in tourism and national pride, both welcome after the devastating Bosnian war of 1992-95. Osmanagich was a national hero.

The only problem was that the experts didn’t believe him. In 2006, the European Association of Archaeologists wrote an open letter to the Bosnian government denouncing the pyramids as a “cruel hoax on an unsuspecting public.”


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