Easter Island Statues - Images of the Moai of Rapa Nui

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Moai with Coral Inlaid Eyes on Coast, Easter Island

Moai with Coral Inlaid Eyes on Coast, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai with Coral Inlaid Eyes on Coast, Easter Island. anoldent

The Moai in Context

Easter Island is a tiny island in the south Pacific Ocean, first populated by Polynesian seafarers about 700 AD. It is most famous for the stunning megalithic sculptures called moai. Moai are human heads, sometimes with inlaid coral or shell eyes, who were carved out of volcanic deposits at the Rano Raraku quarry. There are over 900 moai on Easter Island, all carved between about 1000 and 1600 AD.

Much has been made of the moai in the popular press, particularly how the construction of them paralleled the political and ecological crisis that occurred on the island in the 17th century. But what's missed, I've always thought, is understanding where the moai fit into their landscape. Moai were set in all kinds of environments, and that's interesting, from a visual standpoint and a cultural. This photo essay is simply to see what the moai look like in their places.

More on Easter Island

More information about Easter Island and what archaeologists and historians and the Easter Islanders themselves tell about this fascinating stuff can be found here:

  • Easter Island glossary entry
  • Archaeology Quiz: Easter Island
  • Terry Hunt on Genocide at Easter Island
  • Visiting Easter Island, South America for Visitors

More Easter Island Info

Easter Island Statue Project

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Moai in a Meadow

Moai in a Meadow, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai in a Meadow, Easter Island. www.viajar24h.com

More Easter Island Info

  • Easter Island recent research
  • Archaeology Quiz: Easter Island
  • Terry Hunt on Genocide at Easter Island
  • Visiting Easter Island, South America for Visitors

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Upland Moai

Upland Moai, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Upland Moai, Easter Island. www.viajar24h.com

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Five Moai on Pedestals

Five Moai on Pedestals, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Five Moai on Pedestals, Easter Island. www.viajar24h.com

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Moai Head in Rubble

Moai Head in Rubble, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai Head in Rubble, Easter Island. Phil Whiteside

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Moai Heads on a Hillside

Moai Heads on a Hillside, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai Heads on a Hillside, Easter Island. Vera & Jean-Christophe

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Moai on a Hillside

Moai on a Hillside, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai on a Hillside, Easter Island. Phil Whitehouse

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Moai on the Coast at Sunset

Moai on the Coast at Sunset, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai on the Coast at Sunset, Easter Island. Matt Riggott

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Moai on the Path

Moai on the Path, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Moai on the Path, Easter Island. www.viajar24h.com

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One and Fifteen Moai

One and Fifteen Moai, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ One and Fifteen Moai, Easter Island. Phil Whiteside

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Recycled Moai

Recycled Moai, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Recycled Moai, Easter Island. Vera & Jean-Christophe

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Three Moai on the Coast

Three Moai on the Coast, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Three Moai on the Coast, Easter Island. Jean Delard de Rigoulières

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Seven Moai of Ahu Akivi

Seven Moai of Ahu Akivi, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Seven Moai of Ahu Akivi, Easter Island. anoldent

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Seven Moai with Pukao

Seven Moai with Pukao, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Seven Moai with Pukao, Easter Island. Phil Whiteside

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Rano Raraku Quarry

Rano Raraku Quarry at Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Rano Raraku Quarry at Easter Island. Phil Whiteside

About three hundred unfinished moai are in the Rano Raraku quarry, the largest of which would have stood 60 feet tall, about twice as large as the tallest stones at Stonehenge.

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Ahu Te Pito Kura - The World's Navel

Ahu Te Pito Kura - The World's Navel, Easter Island
Easter Island in Situ Ahu Te Pito Kura - The World's Navel, Easter Island. BjarteSorensen

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