Patrick Kirch of the University of California at Berkeley.

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It’s not surprising Maui has been voted "Best Island in the U.

The island’s sacred sites range from small shrines dedicated to deities of fishing and agriculture, to “monumental” temples whose foundations are still identifiable today, said Dr.

(Photo by Patrick Kirch) And this can be a crucial clue in tracing the island’s political development, Kirch said.

Signs of a temple-building boom would likely indicate a period of political consolidation, as ancient Hawaiian rulers often ramped up their religious authority in order to also wield economic and political authority.

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It’s Just Lunch is the #1 Personalized Matchmaking service in the world!Instead of analyzing carbon, they studied the corals’ levels of uranium, which decays into the element thorium at predictable rates.were built more recently and more rapidly, over a span of no more than 150 years, ending around the year 1700.“Many of the temples in the upland zone seem to be associated with the two main gods of agriculture: Kane and Lono,” Kirch said.Building monuments to these gods in these agricultural areas likely sent a clear message from King Pi’ilani and his successors to the people of Maui, Kirch said.“First of all, the new dates are important just because of their high precision,” Kirch said.