With the amount of destruction they wreaked across the world, its no surprise that the Nazis amassed a pretty impressive collection of fabulous artifacts from the around the world. What is surprising is that many of these artifacts are still turning up, and proving to be far more remarkable than anyone could have anticipated.
The case in point is the comically nicknamed “iron man.” This statue was discovered by Nazi explorers in Tibet who were on a quest to discover the roots of the Aryan race. The explorers took the statue, most likely because it bore a Hindu version of the swastika on the stomach (in this case a symbol of good luck, not mass murder). The statue stayed under wraps for years passing between private collections until the death of an owner lead to its unveiling after decades of secrecy. When the statue was auctioned off, researchers were allowed to examine the artifact to determine its historical significance, and what they found was astonishing. The statue is carved from a meteor that hit earth 15,000 years ago.
The Chinga meteorite landed around the Russian and Mongolian border, and wasn’t officially discovered until 1913, many years after this statue was built. The carved image of the Buddhist got Vaisravana could be up to 1,000 years old, making it’s detailed sculpting a scientific wonder considering the limited technology and knowledge of meteors that existed at the time. Researchers are working to analyze the statue further, and eventually bring it to exhibition. For now, there are still many mysteries surrounding the “iron man” that stand between the enigmatic statue and its unveiling to the general public.