© Facebook / ReutersThe monument on Grunten Mountain, Grüntenhütte; The Utah monolith
A strange metallic monolith has been spotted in Romania just days after a similar structure was discovered in a remote Utah desert - before being removed by an unknown party.

The cryptic 13-foot (4m) object was found near an ancient fortress and archaeological site in the city of Piatra Neamt.

Photographs and videos show that the structure has a startling resemblance to a similar monolith that was discovered, but then hauled away by an unidentified group, in Utah last week. However, the Romanian monolith is decorated with a loop-like script that appears to be etched into the object's metallic veneer.

Comment: On closer inspection this 'loop-like script' appears to little more than hilariously messy marks clearly made with a power tool.

Footage of someone tapping on the monolith, resulting in a low din, suggests that the object is hollow.

Romanian authorities are investigating how the monolith got there, the Daily Mail reported. According to one official, the structure was installed in a protected area on an archaeological site and lacked necessary approval from the Ministry of Culture.

The discovery of the strange structure comes just days after Utah's Bureau of Land Management reported that a similar monolith had been taken away by an "unknown person or group," after wildlife officials stumbled upon it last week. The structure, found in a remote part of the Utah desert, was also hollow and metallic. Officials tried to keep its location a secret, but internet sleuths were able to determine its coordinates, leading to a flood of pilgrims coming to the site. The discovery of the object in Utah sparked creative alien-related theories and triggered an avalanche of Stanley Kubrick memes.

It's still not clear if there is any connection between the two mysterious structures. Despite some internet rumors, it's unlikely the Utah monolith was transported all the way to Romania. A photographer on Facebook claims that he witnessed a group of four men toppling the object in Utah, and then hauling away pieces of the structure using wheelbarrows.

"This is why you don't leave trash in the desert," one of the men reportedly said, according to the eyewitness, who provided photographs which appear to corroborate his story.

Phallic statue in Bavarian mountains vanishes... just like mysterious Utah monolith

© Facebook / ReutersThe monument on Grunten Mountain, Grüntenhütte; The Utah monolith
German police have launched a probe into the disappearance of a famous phallus-shaped statue on the slopes of a Bavarian mountain. And this story has uncanny echoes of that of the metal monolith discovered in Utah last week.

The two-meter-tall wooden statue had become one of the landmarks of the Grunten Mountain, south-west of Munich. The statue was marked as a "cultural monument" on Google maps, and hikers loved taking photos of themselves next to it.

But last weekend, the monument disappeared, with only a stump being left in the spot where it had been erected, Germany's Allgaeuer Zeitung newspaper reported.

What happened to the sculpture was "a shame," said Nikolaus Weissinger, the mayor of the nearby town of Rettenberg.

Local police have opened an investigation to establish who decided to remove the 200kg object from a mountain at a height of 1,738 meters - and why. However, a spokesperson acknowledged it wasn't yet known whether the theft constituted a criminal offence, as the monument doesn't seem to have an owner.

Much like with the Utah monolith, the appearance of the Bavarian phallic statue is also shrouded in mystery. It had been decorating the mountain for four or five years.

One version of what happened, voiced by the German media, claims the monument was carved by some guys as a joke birthday present to their friend. But when the gift was - unsurprisingly - rejected, the young men just rolled it up the mountain and left it there.