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History

Isaiah Woods

The feeding of the Maya

The zooarchaeologist of the Autonomous University of Yucatan, Cristopher Gözt, has unveiled a theory that would explain the pre-Hispanic Maya’s disinterest in domesticating animals since according to him, they could obtain meat products in the cornfields very easily.

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According to various studies related to the feeding of the Maya, especially the elites, it has been proven that there was a binding relationship between the animals that are attracted to the cornfield and the hunting that occurred in it. That is why the pre-Columbian Maya did not find themselves in need of domesticating animals.

Cristopher noted that:
“If they wanted to hunt an animal they went to the cornfield, very different from what happened in the center of the country. Thanks to studies by UADY and INAH, in Mayan palaces and pyramids, it has been determined that the diet of the Mayan elite was meat. It was formed by a group of animals adapted to the agricultural systems that are traditionally followed by the Mayan culture, the white-tailed deer, the collar peccary, the mountain turkey and the iguana. They are animals that are not frequently found in the closed jungle and are adapted to altered spaces, anthropic environments modified by the millennial presence of people who put a cornfield, cut and deforest elsewhere. The settlement pattern, the frequent cornfields and their size, allowed hunting in gardens or cornfields. Whoever wanted to hunt an animal goes to the cornfield and hunts the animals that are attracted to the fruits that were grown there. By having this meat production scheme, the pre-Hispanic Mayans saved the need to domesticate the animals. What I think is that the system of milpera production and hunting is so established that nobody had the need to domesticate an animal, which costs much more work, because it involves protecting the animal, caring for it, seeing that it does not get sick, feeding it, fencing it , but if the Maya had a system in pre-Hispanic times in which animals fed themselves, they didn’t have to worry about it, all they had to do is their cornfield and harvest. We can learn a lot from the pre-Hispanic Maya by having a fantastic system of adaptation that has created a kind of self-feeding cycle. Obviously there are modifications over time, but it is very practical. Perhaps that is why the Mayans were never interested in domesticating animals, as happened in the old continent with goats, cattle, where the labor investment was tremendous for the little result that was obtained.”

New burial discovered in Chiapa de Corzo

After the discovery of the oldest royal tomb in Mesoamerica in a pyramid in the archaeological zone of Chiapa de Corzo, another multiple burial has just been discovered that is supposed to have occurred in 500 BC and which was accompanied by a rich offering between whose objects include a necklace with an Olmec style earring.

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Also located in Mound 11 of the Archaeological Zone of Chiapa de Corzo, in Chiapas, in this second discovery were found the skeletal remains of two adult males, located inside one of the corners of the excavation area of ​​said knoll. Due to its difficult location and the poor state of conservation of the bones, the burial was partially explored, in a portion of one meter per side and 50 centimeters deep from the mound.

Archaeologist Lynneth Lowe of the Center for Mayan Studies at UNAM said:
“We explored the east bank of the tomb, which was roofed with wooden spiers and planks that were defeated by the weight of the earth. This caused the bones to be very fragmented and only cranial bones and vertebrae of these characters were rescued, which were deposited around 500 BC, perhaps as companions of a higher ranking character. It is a very rich burial. Offerings that were symbolically related to the underworld were found in the explored part, composed of five vessels, shells, snails, animal remains, including fragments of a crocodile’s skull, a brocade attire with dozens of canine fangs and the shell of a turtle, a small necklace of jade beads and parts of two bone masks. Among the offerings that were covered by a dense black clay, two engraved earrings that were part of necklaces were discovered, one of which stands out because it presents the profile of a character with Olmec features. Made with the shell of a turtle, this pendant is unique because so far there is no other similar piece. Fragments of other sites in the region are known, but not complete.The other earring, made of an iron ore, was partially broken and has the representation of the silhouette of a deer. The general characteristics of the multiple burial and its offering confirm the early use of Mound 11 of Chiapa de Corzo as a funerary space for people of high rank; In addition to the connection that this settlement maintained with the Olmec nuclear area on the Gulf Coast, in particular with La Venta. Mound 11 was a pyramid that must have been between 6 and 7 meters high at that time, and represented the main construction of the site in its early periods, as the dignitaries were buried there. But in later times, around 100 AD burials of this type began to be carried out in smaller buildings. The sum of all the pieces found in the offerings seems to indicate that Chiapa de Corzo had relations with the area of ​​the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific Coast, the Motagua River Valley basin of Guatemala, and the Central Valleys of Oaxaca. Inhumations of this type began to take place in smaller buildings. The sum of all the pieces found in the offerings seems to indicate that Chiapa de Corzo had relations with the area of ​​the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific Coast, the Motagua River Valley basin of Guatemala, and the Central Valleys of Oaxaca. Inhumations of this type began to take place in smaller buildings. The sum of all the pieces found in the offerings seems to indicate that Chiapa de Corzo had relations with the area of ​​the Gulf of Mexico, the Pacific Coast, the Motagua River Valley basin of Guatemala, and the Central Valleys of Oaxaca”.

The Aztecs in National Geographic

 

This month, the National Geographic magazine publishes an interesting article about the discovery of the monolith of the goddess Tlatecuhtli . It’s always great news, that a magazine like National Geographic, of such prestige and worldwide dissemination, echo the exciting world of the Mexica. And it is that traditionally the magazine has concentrated almost only in the Mayan world. It makes sense, because the Americans had practically a monopoly on archaeological research in that area. The Mexicans themselves preferred to concentrate on the archeology of Central Mexico for decades, leaving the archeology of the south of the country for their northern neighbors. That is why the Maya are better known worldwide than the Mexicans. For the simple reason that organizations like National Geographic have more means to publicize the results of their research. For that reason, that the Mexicans are ported in this magazine is undoubtedly great news.

A robot will explore the tunnel under the Temple of the Feathered Serpent in Teotihuacan

After the recent discovery of a tunnel under the Temple of the Feathered Serpent in Teotihuacan , a robot (the first one used in Mexico for archaeological purposes) is already ready with the intention of exploring and discovering if the hypothesis that they can be found buried there The rulers of Teotihuacan is true or not.

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The first images of the interior of the tunnel were shown today to the press, which marks a milestone in the history of archaeological excavations in Mexico and the Americas. It is the first time in the history of Mexican archeology and the second in the world after Egypt, in which a robot participates in an archaeological investigation.

Tlaloque I, the name of the robot, traveled the first sections of a tunnel through which no one had traveled for at least 800 thousand years. The images he recorded show stability and make it feasible for researchers to enter the pre-Hispanic conduit, built over two thousand years ago by the ancient Teotihuacans to represent the underworld. Previously with the use of a georradar it was determined with precision that the tunnel leads to three chambers, where eventually the remains of important characters could rest.

Archaeologist Sergio Gómez Chávez, director of the Tlalocan Project commented that:
” The entire duct, more than 100 meters long, is perfectly excavated in the rock, in some parts you can see the marks of the tools with which the Teotihuacans did it, the tunnel roof is domed and at least the part that the robot traveled is stable, which gives us many possibilities that in the coming weeks we can physically enter to explore it. Although the tunnel is filled with earth and stones, the robot was able to travel a few meters through a small space of just 25 centimeters high, which is between the roof and the dusty part. We are calculating that by the end of this month or the beginning of December we will have removed a part of the land that is blocking access and then we can already enter. It was also possible to observe in greater detail the large carved stones inside the tunnel. Apparently it is perfectly carved sculptures or rocks, of great dimensions and weight, which were introduced by the Teotihuacans to close the access between the years 200 and 250 AD, that is, approximately 1,800 years ago.

  • About Author

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    Hi, my name is Sharon Isaiah Woods, and I work as an assistant professor of History at the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. I love writing blogs related to History and technology. I have created this blog so that you can easily share your views.

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