What are Moai Statues?

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Scientists have recently found a previously undiscovered moai statue on Easter Island.

About Moai Statues

  • They are massive megalithic stone-carved human-shaped statues found at Easter Island.
  • They are famous for their carved heads and "Pukao," a hat-like covering made from a soft red stone.
  • They were built in approximately 1400 - 1650 A.D. by the natives of this island known as Rapa Nui.
  • There are around 1000 Moai statues which are made up of volcanic tuff, the tallest of them being 33 feet.
  • On average, they weigh between 3 to 5 tons, but the heaviest ones can weigh up to 80.
  • The tools used for carving the moai statues are called toki, and are simple handheld chisels. 

What do moais represent?

  • They were built to honor chieftains or other important people who had passed away.
  • They were placed on rectangular stone platforms called ahu, which are tombs for the people that the statues represented.
  • The moais were intentionally made with different characteristics since they were intended to keep the appearance of the person they represented.

Easter Island:

  • Easter Island, also called Rapa Nui, is a remote Chilean territory located in the Pacific Ocean, roughly 2,200 miles from mainland Chile.
  • It is one of the most remote inhabited places in the world.
  • Much of the island, which is home to some 8,000 residents, is protected as a national park and a UNESCO World Heritage site.


Q1) Who are Rapa Nui people?

The Rapa Nui people most likely migrated to Easter Island from the Marquesas Islands in Polynesia, some 2,200 miles (3,600 kilometers) away.The culture of the Rapa Nui people is very similar to other Polynesian societies. Traditional dress includes feather headdresses and simple loincloths, while carvings are composed of stone or wood and jewelry from coral or seashells.

Source: Scientists uncover new Easter Island moai statue in dry lake bed