Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Ancient pyramid tomb discovered in Mexico

I found a couple of articles on this, both of which essentially say the same thing.  
Archeologists located a tomb inside a Zoque (not Mayan) pyramid in Chiapa de Corzo, in southern Chiapas (Mexico--see map, below).  They were looking at the layers of the pyramids (new pyramids in Mesoamerica were built on top of and around old pyramids) and inside found the tombs, which once had  wooden roofs and posts.   In one tomb was "a man aged around 50, who was buried with jade collars, pyrite and obsidian artifacts and ceramic vessels" and was probably a ruler or nobleman of the town.  "The body of a 1-year-old child was laid carefully over the man's body inside the tomb, while that of a 20-year-old male was tossed into the chamber with less care, perhaps sacrificed at the time of the burial. The older man('s) ... face was covered with what may have been a funeral mask with obsidian eyes. Nearby, the tomb of a woman, also about 50, contained similar ornaments."  The burials are approximately 2,700 years old.
Most interesting, the artifacts had Olmec influences. But because the site is not Mayan, it doesn't confirm any link between the Maya and the Olmecs.
(skeleton image source, map source = Google earth)

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