Category Archives: MEXICO

The Largest Confirmed Pyramid on Earth Dwarfs The Great Pyramid of Giza

The Largest Confirmed Pyramid on Earth Dwarfs The Great Pyramid of Giza

It is the largest pyramid on Earth, with a base four times larger than the Great Pyramid of Giza and almost doubles the volume. The Pyramid is recognized as the largest pyramid in volume with four million five hundred thousand cubic meters. It literally DWARFS the Great Pyramid of Giza.

Experts estimate that it took around 1,000 years for the Pyramid to be built. It is also so far, the largest monument ever built in the world, among all ancient civilizations. It still remains a mystery as to WHO built the Pyramid.

The Great Pyramid of Cholula or Tlachihualtepetl –from the Nahuatl meaning “handmade hill”— is the largest pyramidal basement in the world with 450 meters per side. In fact, it is not a single pyramid at all, but one monument stacked on top of another, consisting of at least six buildings. It grew in stages, as successive civilizations improved what had already been built.

The Largest Confirmed Pyramid on Earth Dwarfs The Great Pyramid of Giza
Artist’s conception of what the pyramid might have looked like.

With 450 meters wide and 66 meters high, the Great Pyramid of Cholula is equivalent to nine Olympic swimming pools. However, the Great Pyramid of Cholula has an impressive list of records: it is the largest pyramid on Earth, with a base four times larger than the Great Pyramid of Giza and almost doubles the volume. It is also so far, the largest monument ever built in the world, among all civilizations.

Curiously, It is also officially recognized as the largest pyramid in volume with 4,500,000 m³, but it is not the tallest one; With  65 m high the  Great Pyramid of Cholula is similar to that of the Pyramid of the Sun in Teotihuacan which has 64, while the Great Pyramid of Giza In Egypt it has a height of 139.

The pyramid was built to appease the “feathered serpent” god
This view of the pyramid was taken in the early 20th century

While experts are unsure as to when exactly the Pyramid building process was begun, archaeologists believe it was around 300 BC or at the beginning of the Christian era.

It is estimated that it took between 500 and 1,000 years until the pyramid was finished.  According to legend, when the local inhabitants heard that the Spanish Conquistadores were approaching, the locals covered the sacred temple with dirt.

When Cortes and his men arrived in Cholula in October 1519, some 1,800 years after the pyramid was built, they massacred about 3,000 people in a single hour, 10% of the entire population of the city, and levelled many of their religious structures.

But they never touched the pyramid, because they never found it.

When the pavement was dug up in 2013 to enter the city’s drainage system, at least 63 skeletons were found from pre-colonial times

The Pyramid is a mind-bending structure, and it is so old that when Cortes and his men arrived in Mexico, the monument was already thousands of years old and completely covered by vegetation.

Strangely, first on-site excavations revealed a series of horrifying discoveries, including deformed skulls of decapitated children.

Curiously, little is known about the initial history of the pyramid. It is thought that construction began around 300 BC, but it remains a mystery who erected it.

According to legends, the Great Pyramid of Cholula was built by giants.

Archaeologists estimate that the Cholutecas participated in the construction.

Olmec Civilization: Survivors of Atlantis?

Olmec Civilization: Survivors of Atlantis?

Are the Ancient Olmecs Survivors of Atlantis?

It is a theory that according to many, could explain the incredible technologies and skills of this enigmatic Ancient Civilization.

Even though the Olmec civilization is surrounded by numerous mysteries, researchers believe that all the classical cultures of Mesoamerica originated from this mysterious civilization. But where did this ancient civilization originate? And why is it that we know so little about one of the most influential ancient civilizations of Mesoamerica?

Olmec Head No. 3 from San Lorenzo-Tenochtitlán

Their stonemason skills were something noteworthy, achieving incredible constructions and monuments, like the giant Olmec heads, before the Aztecs, Mayas and other civilizations of the Americas. The question that has baffled archaeologists and other researchers are how?

From where did the ancient Olmecs obtain their knowledge and where do they come from?

Is it possible that as some researchers suggest, the Ancient Olmecs are the survivors of Ancient Atlantis?

Atlantis and the Olmecs

The Olmecs were a very advanced civilization that predates the Ancient Maya and Aztec empires. Their knowledge in geology allowed this mysterious ancient civilization to literally “terraform” certain regions. The San Lorenzo plateau is one of those examples. It is considered one of the most important architectural projects in ancient times.

The entire region was “modified” to the liking of the ancient Olmecs. This project involved the removal of tons of earth and rock that allowed the construction of giant terraces, walls and monuments, literally transforming their surroundings into a sacred area for their inhabitants.

The question that still remains is, how did ancient man achieve this… thousands of years ago? Is it possible that their advanced technology and knowledge originated on the last city-continent of Atlantis? And if so, are there any similarities between them?

What if the Ancient Atlanteans actually Migrated to Mesoamerica and ‘kickstarted’ some of the most incredible Ancient Civilizations on Earth: The Aztecs, Mayas and possibly even Incas?

If Atlantis did exist? How come that there is no evidence of this mythical “continent“, surely such a powerful ancient civilization would have left its mark worldwide, why is it that Plato is one of the few who mentioned Atlantis?

Basically, the tale about Atlantis did not exist until Plato wrote about it. But what if… Atlantis was destroyed but its people lived on… only that this time they were not called Atlanteans but Olmecs? No one can explain where the Olmecs came from, we know based on research where historians believe they originated from, but due to certain features, like the giant Heads which do not resemble natives from Central America, many believe that the Olmec civilizations actually originated from another place on Earth, a place that some call ancient Atlantis.

This ancient civilization achieved an incredible degree of development, totally incomprehensible if we consider that we know nothing of their origin nor their roots. They were a society that knew about animal domestication, and beekeeping before any other ancient civilization.

The Hematite Bar, possible evidence of advanced technology?
One of the most mysterious findings directly connected with the Ancient Olmec civilization is a 3.5 cm hematite bar that has caused mixed reactions among researchers. When placed on the water its axis points towards the north.

According to researchers from the University of Michigan, this device was a compass. This changes a lot in history since it would mean that the ancient Olmecs are the inventors of the compass and no the Chinese as previously thought. The device is believed to have been used to position their constructions facing north.

The Olmec Legacy

The ancient Olmecs left so much yet so little behind and just like many other great ancient civilizations, they too disappeared without a trace. In addition to the gigantic heads, the Olmecs have left other pieces of great artistic value, such as thrones, altars and human figures and no other culture in Mesoamerica attained perfection and the level of mastery of the Olmecs when it comes to sculpting.

The question is, how did this ancient civilization that was almost in the stone age, manage such perfection that engineers today cannot replicate?

Mexican cave contains signs of human visitors from 30,000 years ago

Mexican cave contains signs of human visitors from 30,000 years ago

At first glance, Chiquihuite Cave in Mexico’s Zacatecas state is an unlikely place to find signs of early humans, let alone evidence that might change the story of the peopling of the Americas. It sits a daunting 1000 meters above a valley, overlooking a desert landscape in the mountains north of Zacatecas. Getting there requires a 4- or 5-hour uphill scramble over a moonscape of jagged boulders.

But in the soil below the cave’s floor, a team led by archaeologist Ciprian Ardelean of the Autonomous University of Zacatecas, University City Siglo XXI, dug up almost 2000 stone objects that researchers think are tools. By combining state-of-the-art dating methods, the team argues that humans were at the site at least 26,000 years ago—more than 10,000 years before any other known human occupation in the region. “Chiquihuite is a solitary dot” of human occupation, Ardelean says.

The dates place humans there during the height of the last ice age when ice covered much of what is now Canada and sea levels were much lower. To have settled in Mexico by then, Ardelean says, people must have entered the Americas 32,000 years ago or more before the ice reached its maximum extent.

“If it is true people were in Zacatecas by 32,000 years ago, that changes everything—it more than doubles the time people have been in the Americas,” says Oregon State University, Corvallis, archaeologist Loren Davis, who was not part of the research team. But he remains sceptical, in part because he isn’t convinced the artefacts are tools. “I’m not going to say it’s impossible,” he says. “But if all they found are fractured rocks without any corroborating evidence, it’s natural to be skeptical.”

Still, he and others say they’re willing to be convinced. For decades, most researchers thought humans arrived in the Americas approximately 13,000 years ago; occasional claims of an earlier arrival met strong criticism. But over the past decade, evidence for earlier migrations has emerged at sites from Canada to southern Chile.

Most researchers now think people travelled by boat along North America’s west coast, exploiting marine resources, as early as 16,000 years ago, when the interior of the continent was mostly frozen over.

Stone tools like this one, from deep in Chiquihuite Cave in Mexico, suggest people lived there at least 26,000 years ago.

Just one other site—Bluefish Caves, in Canada’s Yukon territory—has yielded dates as old as Chiquihuite. Researchers attribute thousands of broken animal bones there—dated to about 24,000 years ago—to human hunting. But the site remains controversial, in part because few stone tools or cut marks have been found among the bones.

Ardelean heard about the cave from local villagers. Beginning in 2012, he and his team spent 1 month or more at a time at Chiquihuite, resupplying every few weeks using donkeys. Although forbidding today, the site would have looked far more hospitable 26,000 years ago.

A spring-fed creek flows near the cave’s original entrance, which was blocked long ago by rockslides. DNA and other evidence the researchers extracted from inside the cave show it opened onto a lush landscape harbouring cranes, condors, marmot, goat, sheep, horses, and bears. “It looked a lot more like British Columbia or Oregon than desert,” Ardelean says.

Digging into the cave floor over the past 8 years, Ardelean and his team found stones shaped into what look like scrapers, hand axes, spear points, and other tools at depths of up to 3 meters.

Dating experts at the University of Oxford, the University of New South Wales (UNSW), and elsewhere determined when the rocks had last been exposed to light and radiocarbon-dated more than 50 samples of animal bone and charcoal found near the tools.

As the group reports today in Nature, the artifacts were deposited starting 26,000 years ago and accumulated on the cave floor for the next 16,000 years. The authors argue that it adds up to a continuous human presence, with people regularly visiting the cave over millennia.

But the team found no human DNA or bones cut marked by human hands. Nor did they discover a central hearth, so they can’t be certain whether the bits of burned wood analyzed for radiocarbon dates are from wind-blown wildfires or human-made campfires.

“The evidence is what the evidence is,” says team member Lorena Becerra-Valdivia, a radiocarbon dating expert at UNSW. “We’re quite confident that the stone tools are, indeed, stone tools.”

Critics point out that the tools are simple and don’t resemble other toolkits from the Americas, raising the possibility they’re the product of natural breakage. “They look like they could be artifacts, but why aren’t they found anywhere else in the landscape?” wonders David Meltzer, an archaeologist at Southern Methodist University.

The tools’ consistency is also remarkable, he says. “If these tools are real, why are they only found—so far at least—in this one spot over a 10,000-year period? Humans adapt and adopt new technology.”

Becerra-Valdivia says work in other sites, especially those south of the United States, may turn up corroborating evidence. “We need to take a really good look at South America.”

 And Ardelean says Chiquihuite has more secrets to reveal: “This is not a hit-and-run discovery. There’s more evidence coming.”

34 Pre-Columbian Artifacts Returned to Mexico by Germans

34 Pre-Columbian Artifacts Returned to Mexico by Germans

DW reports that more than 30 pre-Columbian artefacts have been handed over to Mexico’s embassy in Germany.

Among the archaeological objects returned to Mexico are anthropomorphic figures made of clay, bowls and vessels, and one of the effigy type; stamps and fragments of anthropomorphic figurines.

Mexico has recovered 34 pre-Columbian artifacts that were voluntarily returned by two German private collectors, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs said on Wednesday.

“Two German citizens approached our embassy in Berlin to express their interest in returning archaeological pieces that were in the possession of their families,” said the Mexican foreign minister’s legal consultant, Alejandro Celorio.

The Mexican Culture Ministry tweeted details of the items recovered: “Among the cultural assets there are bowls, vessels, stamps and an Olmec-style anthropomorphic mask.”

The mask, made of rock and from the period 1200-600 B.C., was just one of the objects dating back centuries. Others included anthropomorphic clay figures and a three-legged Mayan clay pot from the period 1000-1521 A.D.

Sensitive issue

Diego Prieto, director of Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History, highlighted the “growing sensitivity” in the global community about the need to respect cultural heritage and return artefacts.

The recovered pieces were handed over to embassy officials in July of this year.

Twenty-eight of the objects were in the city of Monheim am Rhein in western Germany and the remaining six in Recklinghausen, some 70 kilometres (43 miles) away. 

Mexico analyzes bones and objects from 1,400 years ago found in Michoacán

Mexico analyzes bones and objects from 1,400 years ago found in Michoacán

The skeletal remains of a woman and 19,428 associated objects, found in 2011 in the archaeological zone of Tingambato, in the western state of Michoacán, were analyzed by researchers from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), who pointed out that its antiquity dates back to 630 AD.

Mexico analyzes bones and objects from 1,400 years ago found in Michoacán
Intentional cultural modifications to the skull and teeth of the young woman found in Tomb II at Tingambato

In a statement, it was explained that the skeletal remains of the woman were found inside a burial chamber “built five meters deep, with strong stone walls and a vaulted ceiling of slabs in a spiral direction, where she was buried with a rich trousseau made up of 19,428 shell and lapidary objects “.

The archaeologist José Luis Punzo Díaz, a researcher at the INAH Michoacán Center, indicated that the results revealed the significance of this burial and of the inhumed character, placing it “as one of the most important archaeology in western Mexico, particularly Michoacán.”

Osteological and ancient DNA analysis confirmed that the skeletal remains deposited in Tomb II of the aforementioned archaeological zone belonged to a young woman between 16 and 19 years old and its antiquity dates back to 630 AD.

This according to the radiocarbon collagen analysis done at the National Autonomous University of Mexico (UNAM), whose data coincides with the stage of greatest growth of Tingambato, from 550 to 850 AD, said Alejandro Valdés Herrera, a member of the research project.

Analysis of the skeletal remains with computerized axial tomography

Due to the fragmentation and poor preservation conditions of the skull, a careful reconstruction was made in the Laboratory of Physical Anthropology of the INAH-Michoacán Center, where it was discovered that it presented cephalic deformation, as well as dental modification work.

“Although these modifications were recurrent in his time, they are associated with certain groups in society, which leads us to think that he was part of the local elite,” explained Valdés Herrera.

While when analyzing his teeth, they observed that the modifications were not worn or showed evidence of use, so they could have been carried out at a time close to his death.

The studies of the materials, which began in 2016, also determined various paleopathologies, which indicate that he suffered periods of illness such as fever and a mild degree of malnutrition, although they do not appear to be the cause of death, which is still unknown.

When analyzing 18,601 elements made with seashells, it was determined that most of the beads and earrings are of the Spondylus princeps species, from the Pacific, peculiar for its orange hue, which was highly appreciated by ancient cultures.

About the 827 lapidary elements, the specialists highlighted that most of the greenstone beads correspond to a mineral called amazonite, whose origin is not yet specified, but important veins are known in the state of Chihuahua.

Lapidary from the grave goods, identified by archaeometric analysis as mostly Amazonite,

According to studies, Tingambato was a privileged site due to its location, at the entrance to Tierra Caliente and the cold mountain range of Michoacán, which arose in the year 0 and had a constant occupation until 900 AD.

Digital reconstruction of the grave goods, Tomb II of Tingambato
Digital reconstruction of the burial in Tomb II of Tingambato

Humans Arrived in North America More Than 30,000 Years Ago, Study Suggests

Humans Arrived in North America More Than 30,000 Years Ago, Study Suggests

According to an unexpected finding made by an Iowa State University researcher, the earliest people may have arrived in North America approximately 20,000 years earlier than previously thought.

Andrew Somerville, an assistant professor of anthropology in world languages and cultures, says he and his colleagues made the discovery while studying the origins of agriculture in the Tehuacan Valley in Mexico.

As part of that work, they wanted to establish a date for the earliest human occupation of the Coxcatlan Cave in the valley, so they obtained radiocarbon dates for several rabbit and deer bones that were collected from the cave in the 1960s as part of the Tehuacan Archaeological-Botanical Project.

Coxcatlan Cave, a rock shelter located within the southern portion of the Tehuacan Valley in Mexico.

The dates for the bones suddenly took Somerville and his colleagues in a different direction with their work. The dates for the bone samples from the early depositional levels of the cave ranged from 33,448 to 28,279 years old.

Somerville says even though previous studies had not dated items from the bottom of the cave, he was not expecting such old ages. The findings add to the debate over a long-standing theory that the first humans crossed the Bering Land Bridge into the Americas 13,000 years ago.

“We weren’t trying to weigh in on this debate or even find really old samples. We were just trying to situate our agricultural study with a firmer timeline,” Somerville said. “We were surprised to find these really old dates at the bottom of the cave, and it means that we need to take a closer look at the artefacts recovered from those levels.”

Somerville says the findings provide researchers with a better understanding of the chronology of the region. Previous studies relied on charcoal and plant samples, but he says the bones were a better material for dating. However, questions still remain. Most importantly, is there a human link to the bottom layer of the cave where the bones were found?

To answer that question, Somerville and Matthew Hill, ISU associate professor of anthropology, plan to take a closer look at the bone samples for evidence of cut marks that indicate the bones were butchered by a stone tool or human or thermal alternations that suggest the bones were boiled or roasted over a fire. He says the possible stone tools from the early levels of the cave may also yield clues.

“Determining whether the stone artifacts were products of human manufacture or if they were just naturally chipped stones would be one way to get to the bottom of this,” Somerville said. “If we can find strong evidence that humans did in fact make and use these tools, that’s another way we can move forward.”

Year-long journey to even find the bones

Not only was this discovery unexpected, but the process of tracking down the animal bones to take samples was more than Somerville anticipated. The collection of artifacts from the 1960s Tehuacan Archaeological-Botanical Project was distributed to different museums and labs in Mexico and the United States, and it was unclear where the animal bones were sent.

After a year of emails and cold calls, Somerville and his collaborator, Isabel Casar from the National Autonomous University of Mexico, had a potential lead for a lab in Mexico City. The lab director, Joaquin Arroyo-Cabrales, agreed to give Somerville and Casar a tour to help search for the missing collection. The tour proved to be beneficial. Among the countless boxes of artifacts, they found what they were looking for.

“Having spent months trying to locate the bones, we were excited to find them tucked away on the bottom shelf in a dark corner of the lab,” Somerville said. “At the time, we felt that was a great discovery, we had no idea it would lead to this.”

Once he located the bones, Somerville got permission from the Mexican government to take small samples — about 3/4 inch in length and 1/4 inch in width — from 17 bones (eight rabbits and nine deer) for radiocarbon dating. If closer examination of the bones provides evidence of a human link, Somerville says it will change what we know about the timing and how the first people came to America.

“Pushing the arrival of humans in North America back to over 30,000 years ago would mean that humans were already in North America prior to the period of the Last Glacial Maximum, when the Ice Age was at its absolute worst,” Somerville said.

“Large parts of North America would have been inhospitable to human populations. The glaciers would have completely blocked any passage over land coming from Alaska and Canada, which means people probably would have had to come to the Americas by boats down the Pacific coast.”

New pyramid discovered in Mexico

New pyramid discovered in Mexico

Archaeologists have found a new pyramid in Tlacochcalco (modern-day Mexico). The town was a political centre during the pre-Hispanic period.

According to Mexico’s National Institute of Anthropology and History, the ruins of Tlacochcalco are located in the modern-day town of Tlalmanalco.

According to the archaeologist of INAH, Herve Victor Monterrosa Desruelle”This area,” he explained, “is a continuum of platforms and levellings, reflecting a pre-Hispanic occupation, but unfortunately, houses have been built on them, although in this case, the owner of the property where the remains were located, when he wanted to build, turned to the Institute in order to examine a mound found on his land, which when analysed revealed the structure.”

Detail of some spindle whorls found between levelling walls

Monterrosa explained that the elements of the foundation discovered are only a third of the volume of the construction, the rest was razed to the ground by the urban sprawl.

The pyramid was buried under a mound. Its base was 12 to 18 meters long and 9 meters tall. The pyramid had three levels, but only a third of the original structure has been preserved. Thus, the base originally measured 35 meters by 45 meters.

New pyramid discovered in Mexico

“In the clearance of the building, by means of approach shafts, we located different elements such as the walls, which are being attended to along the length of each facade.

Once this intervention is done, the second phase will be to give volume and solidity to the structure, which is deteriorated, especially in the north-western part, by means of consolidation and restitution works”.

Another of the specialists involved in the project, developed by the Ministry of Culture through the Centro INAH Estado de Mexico, the archaeologist and architect Ricardo Arredondo Rojas, pointed out that in the first section, a number of rooms were found with the remains of stucco floors, with which the height of the walls could be determined.

Architecturally, he said, the structure shows two phases of occupation: the first, from 1350 to 1465 – during Chalco’s hegemonic period – shows a clear Chalca influence, with a construction system that uses mortar based on lime and crushed tezontle, as well as mud from the lake as a binder, with the stone quarry work standing out for its technical work.

View of the northwest corner of the pyramidal base

The second stage, with the occupation of the Mexica Empire in this region (from 1465 until the time of contact with the Spaniards), corresponds to the phase of expansion of the base, which can be seen in the series of caissons for the foundation fillings that were constructed in this area.

“However, the quality of the work declines completely, it becomes coarser, which indicates changes in the occupation and the sense of urban space.”

“The latter shows us how they gained land from the nearby ravine, filling the structure with these small structures that supported it, which they filled with waste ceramic material from an earlier period.”

Arredondo Rojas commented that, if the original volume of the pyramidal base were restored, “we would be talking about approximate dimensions of between 35 and 45 metres on a side, in its first level”.

Detail of the tripod plate found in front of the wall of the third section on the north facade

According to the archaeological data obtained so far, both researchers suggest that it is an elite housing structure, perhaps a palace area, given that the ceramic material found at the site is fine, although it remains to be analysed.

They stressed that it is also necessary to corroborate the sequences of occupation, because even when the remains of the building are available, the archaeological material, mainly ceramics (sherds and spindle whorls), are found mixed up with the construction fills or in the deposits of the rubble.

“We need to locate and excavate more sealed contexts to determine these, so the excavations will conclude in September, and then the archaeological materials will be analysed in the office,” they added.

Herve Monterrosa explained that when people talk about sites from the Postclassic period, such as this one, they are approached with an ethnocentric view of the Mexica; “however, the one being excavated is Chalca, whose importance lies in having been, like Tlacochcalco, the head of the altepetl (in the Mexica period) and one of the five original lordships of Chalco, along with Tenango-Tepopula, Xico-Chalco-Atenco, Amecameca and Xochimilco-Chimalhuacan.

Tlalmanalco was one of the late-founded Chalco kingdoms, established in the mid-14th century, which, at the end of the Mexica incursion at the site, in the Contact stage, became the main socio-political entity of the Chalcayotl, the league of villages in the region.

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“It was in this settlement where Hernan Cortes, according to his Third Letter of Relation, spent the night to negotiate the alliance with the lords of Chalco, who would lead him to the city of Mexico-Tenochtitlan,” he concluded.

2,000-Year-Old Realistic Green Mask Found Nestled Inside an Ancient Pyramid

2,000-Year-Old Realistic Green Mask Found Nestled Inside an Ancient Pyramid

Alejandro Sarabia, Saburo Sugiyama, Enrique Perez Cortes & Nawa Sugiyama have reported this discovery,  announced this finding registered during explorations conducted in the 65-meters high pyramidal structure from 2008 to 2011.

The 116-meter-long tunnel drilled in 1930 by the archaeologist Eduardo Noguera was used to excavate 59 stratigraphic wells and 3 short tunnels by the Pyramid of the Sun project led by Alejandro Sarabia in order to enter the mother rock floor, to check the existence of burials and offerings.

“We know if the Teotihuacan’s had put anything inside the monument they would have happened at the tepetate level, so we did a quick test right at the end of the tunnel and a short conduct to reach the centre of the pyramid since Noguera tunnel was carved approximately 6 metres to the west of the centre of the monument”, said Perez Cortes. During the course of the excavation, 3 architectural structures built before the Pyramid of the Sun and 7 human burials, some of them referring to infants, were found, which were buried before the completion of the building, as well as 2 offerings, one of the great richness.

The sumptuous offering was discovered at the meter 85 of the tunnel, inside the constructive filling, “so we know it was deposited as part of a consecration ceremony of the structure, probably at the beginning of its construction more than 1900 years ago” mentioned Perez Cortes, the researcher at Zacatecas INAH Center.

The rich deposit, where a greenstone mask outstands, was integrated by several levels of objects; since the area of archaeological material extended to the south of the limits of the probing well, they decided to expand the exploration.

Objects that integrate the offering “were elaborated with different materials and techniques; a considerable amount of obsidian pieces outstand, such as projectile heads, small knives, an anthropomorphic eccentric artefact and 3 anthropomorphic figures adorned with shell and pyrite eyes, also accompanied by projectile heads”.

Among the 3 greenstone sculptures found, outstands an extraordinary anthropomorphic mask carved out in one piece, with eyes inlayed in pyrite and shell, declared Perez Cortes; the serpentine mask, according to studies conducted by Dr Jose Luis Ruvalcaba, from the National University Physics Institute (IF UNAM), is the only greenstone mask discovered until now in the ritual context of Teotihuacan.

The 11 centimetres high, 11.5 wide and 7.8 cm deep mask is different to other Teotihuacan masks because it presents smaller dimensions and has volume; it is possible that it was a portrait. A seashell was found next to the sculpture.

2,000-Year-Old Realistic Green Mask Found Nestled Inside an Ancient Pyramid

The offering also contained 11 Tlaloc vessels, most of them fragmented, placed in the centre of it. Other objects deposited include 3 pyrite discs, being the one with 45 centimetres diameter mounted on a slate slab the greatest recovered until now in Teotihuacan.

An important amount of animal skeletons was found. The skull of a feline was placed to the northeast; a canine to the south and an eagle covered with volcanic rock, to the southeast. The bird was fed before the sacrifice with 2 rabbits, as analyses reveal.  This kind of fauna is similar to the one found at offerings of the Pyramid of Moon. Researchers from the Pyramid of Sun Project at Teotihuacan Archaeological Zone (ZAT) remarked that the offering remained underwater since the humidity of the monumental structure concentrates on the base and central area.

Dr Saburo Sugiyama, professor at Aichi University, Japan, and Alejandro Sarabia, director of the archaeological zone located in Estado de Mexico, indicated that for a long time before the discovery, the function of the pyramid was linked to the underworld because of the tunnel excavated by Teotihuacan people.

“Nevertheless, objects found would be indicating that the Pyramid of the Sun –which covers an approximate area of 5.6 hectares- was possibly offered to a rain deity, an early version of Tlaloc, during the first 50 years of the Common Era”.

“Until now, we can only offer a general interpretation of the findings, although it is evident that some of them present the same distribution pattern already observed at the Pyramid of the Moon burials”, concluded the specialists.

History of “Pyramid of Sun”:

The Pyramid of the Sun is the largest building in Teotihuacan and one of the largest in Mesoamerica. Found along the Avenue of the Dead, in between the Pyramid of the Moon and the Ciudadela, and in the shadow of the massive mountain Cerro Gordo, the pyramid is part of a large complex in the heart of the city.

The name Pyramid of the Sun comes from the Aztecs, who visited the city of Teotihuacán centuries after it was abandoned; the name given to the pyramid by the Teotihuacanos is unknown. It was constructed in two phases. The first construction stage, around 100 A.D., brought the pyramid to nearly the size it is today.

The second round of construction resulted in its completed size of 738 feet (225 meters) across and 246 feet (75 meters) high, making it the third-largest pyramid in the world, but being much shorter than the Great Pyramid of Giza (146 meters). The second phase also saw the construction of an altar atop the pyramid, which has not survived into modern times. The Adosada platform was added to the pyramid in the early third century, at around the same time that the Ciudadela and Temple of the Feathered Serpent, Teotihuacan Pyramid of the Feathered Serpent were constructed.

Over the structure, the ancient Teotihuacanos finished their pyramid with lime plaster imported from surrounding areas, on which they painted brilliantly coloured murals. While the pyramid has endured for centuries, the paint and plaster have not and are no longer visible. Few images are thought to have been included in the mural decorations on the sides of the pyramid. Jaguar heads and paws, stars, and snake rattles are among the few images associated with the pyramids.

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It is thought that the pyramid venerated a deity within Teotihuacan society but the destruction of the temple on top of the pyramid, by both deliberate and natural forces prior to the archaeological study of the site, has so far prevented identification of the pyramid with any particular deity. However, little evidence exists to support this theory.