As we move though The 10 Most Puzzling Ancient Artifacts list, we come to a couple “catch-all” categories. The first is Out-Of-Place Metal Objects, which is a subcategory of what are called OOPArts, or Out-Of-Place Artifacts.
This really is a huge catch-all and includes many objects that are both real (in that they exist, but are not necessarily what they are claimed to be) and those that are fake. There are really too many for me to address in one post, and I will be getting back to them individually at a later point. I get lots of questions about these little tid-bits of metal, and every time I investigate them, they turn out to be little more than urban legends, if they exist at all.
I do want to point out here, that the term OOPArt is not professional jargon. I would wager if you walked up to the average archaeologist and asked them about OOPArts, they’d have no clue what you were talking about, and after you explained it, they would try not to laugh. It is however a big part of pseudoscience and should be a clue that whoever you are speaking with is not an expert in the field.
Now, we’ve covered a few of the OOPArts already, The Antikythera Mechanism, the Klerksdorp Spheres, and recently the Coso Artifact. Of just these three, only the Mechanism is a real artifact, and it’s not a puzzle as to what it is. The Spheres aren’t even metal, and the Coso Artifact is a corroded spark-plug. This appears to be the reality for most of the OOPArts, that they are either items that are thought to be metal but aren’t, are metal but are being claimed to be older than they are, or simply made up.
As I said before, I will be going over these individualy, but right now I want to make sure that we all understand that OOPArts are mostly made up, never what they claim, and rarely ancient.