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Rapa Nui National Park

Photo by Tankbmb / Getty Images.

On the most remote inhabited island on the planet, architectural and artistic traditions developed independent of external influence for the good part of a millennium. Rapa Nui, also known as Easter Island, was first inhabited by a group of Eastern Polynesian settlers around a thousand years ago. They constructed the island’s famous moai statues, which depict Rapa Nui ancestors, from volcanic rock and brought them to ceremonial platforms called ahu. An estimated 900 moai, which range in height from roughly six to 65 feet, and 300 ahu still stand throughout the island. Today, the art and architecture of the island are celebrated as a remarkable cultural phenomenon and as evidence of the unique power and imagination of the Rapa Nui people.

—Prepared by the World Tribune staff

April 7, 2023, World Tribune, p. 12

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