Xenoarchaeology

The Second Age heralded a period of human fascination with the ancient, alien artefacts found on various habitable and inhabitable world. From statues carved of wood to structures constructed out of difficult to identify materials, colonists found myriad signs of a now vanished race capable of amazing feats of craft and – presumably – art.

Xenoarchaeology became an in vogue subject amongst certain sectors of mankind. Alien allies and trade partners were reticent to speak about the artefacts and the ancient race, with reactions ranging from superstition (widely held by the Oroso) to enigmatic evasiveness of the subject (like the Vonn). Although made illegal by the UN midway through the Age, illegal trade in such artefacts bloomed. Small sculptures were kept as ornaments by the wealthy, whilst modern-day snake oil salesmen would grind down certain substances and sell them on their supposed miraculous effects.

Xenoarchaeologists are divided in their interpretation of this ancient culture. Images exist of two distinct lifeforms: a sinewy humanoid biped and a large quadraped. The initial thought was that the bipeds were the intelligent builders of the species, with the four-legged members being beasts of burden. This has been derided as uttered egocentric by the newest school of thought, led by Tiafosa Grainger of Deimos University, who has unearthed evidence of the opposite, with the humanoids used as a client or slave race.

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