Father Crespi and the Crespi collection

Carlo Crespi Croci

Salesian Father Carlo Crespi Croci was born in Italy in 1891 and dedicated his life to work as a missionary in Ecuador, from 1923 until his death in 1982.

Father Crespi is often remembered as an enlightened individual, a man of many talents and interests ranging from anthropology to botany; he was an educator, an artist, an explorer, as well as obviously a man of the church. In the face of his work carried out in the city of Cuenca, the local population even paid homage to him with a statue in the square.

Father Carlo Crespi driving a canoe with settlers and Shuar Indians, between 1923 and 1937

Father Crespi metal library

Over the years he spent in Ecuador as a missionary, Father Crespi collected a large number of objects in gold, silver and other metal alloys, which were brought to him by locals who claimed to have found them in underground caves located in the jungles present in that geographic area. When these accumulated, they were taken to the local church of Maria Auxiliadora, where they were kept. Unfortunately, a large number of these objects were lost in a fire in 1962, while others were later stolen by thieves and treasure hunters.

The Crespi collection

The particular "collection" that was put together by Father Crespi was mainly made up of metal tablets with inscriptions and symbols, which it was not possible to decipher. The letters and symbols represented on these tablets are not in fact attributable to known civilizations and in many cases they seem to represent images of an unknown culture.

Another peculiar feature of this collection is that it includes objects that are difficult to place in that geographical area, such as a sort of astrometeorological calendar very similar to a Greek Parapegmata.

Finds from an unknown civilization

The collection is certainly fascinating and over the years numerous doubts have been raised regarding the origin of the objects in question. One theory in particular claims that the finds are attributable to an ancient civilization unknown to us, never mentioned in the history books; a different interpretation of the tablets would make us believe instead that the beings represented are actually Sumerian divinities and that this is the proof that the Sumerian civilization has even reached the south of the American continent.

Then there are those who believed both versions of history to be true, assuming that both the Sumerian civilization and other ancient cultures of South America would be nothing more than propagations of a single, highly advanced previous culture, unknown to us; this civilization would also have originated the culture that we attribute to the ancient Egyptians and other peoples who shared the Mediterranean at the dawn of known history. Some claim that these are the so-called Anunnaki.

There are obviously those who believe much more simply that most of the finds were nothing more than fakes made by local natives and that the collection never had a real value from a historical point of view.

Father Crespi - Mesopotamia Assiria Sumerian

Erich von Däniken, Juan Moricz and the truth about Cueva de los Tayos

According to what is reported in his book "The Gold of the Gods", Erich von Däniken claims to have personally visited the caves (Cueva de los Tayos) from which the finds came, with the support of the local guide Juan Moricz. The author describes in detail the descent into the tunnels and the wonderful objects discovered in the caves, speaking of an ancient race unknown to us.

However, Juan Moricz himself is of a completely different opinion, who argues without a shadow of a doubt that Erich von Däniken has never been to the "Cueva de los Tayos" caves and has never seen the objects he talks about in his book. .


If ever I felt I'd been in the presence of a Saint it was Padre Crespi!
Stan Hall


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Cover image by Salesianos de Don Bosco

Article image 1 by WIKIMEDIA COMMONS (Unknown author)

Article image 2 by Mariusz Matuszewski

article by: Astronaut01

Who was Father Crespi?

Carlo Crespi Croci was a Salesian born in Italy in 1891. He dedicated his life to work as a missionary in Ecuador, from 1923 until his death in 1982. 



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