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Lying Stones

The scientist Johannes Bartholomaeus Adam Beringer (1670-1738), who had a doctorate in philosophy and medicine, examined animals, plants and minerals with respect to their medical benefit. In 1725 he found stones with figural decoration in Eibelstadt near Wuerzburg, Germany. They showed insects, frogs, toads, lizards, butterflies and birds. Beringer commissioned 21 copperplates showing 204 of the 2000 stones that had been found so far. He compiled his work "Lithographia Wirceburgensis" and in May 1726 he submitted it to his academic colleagues for assessment. Later, he realized himself, that the stones are not of natural origin but are man-made forgeries which had been created with a fraudulent intent.
That's why they are now known as so-called "Lying stones".

 

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