Skip to comments.Mexican archeologists make major Aztec find
Posted on 10/04/2006 8:25:18 PM PDT by NormsRevenge
MEXICO CITY (Reuters) - Mexican archeologists have made the most significant Aztec find in decades, unearthing a 15th century altar and a huge stone slab at a ruined temple in the throbbing heart of Mexico City.
The works were uncovered last weekend at the Aztec empire's main Templo Mayor temple, near the central Zocalo square, which was used for worship and human sacrifice.
It was the most meaningful find since electricity workers stumbled upon an eight-tonne carving of an Aztec goddess at the same site in 1978.
"It is a very important discovery, the biggest we have made in 28 years. It will allow us to find out a lot more," Mexico City's mayor, Alejandro Encinas, said on Wednesday.
The altar has a frieze of the rain god Tlaloc and an agricultural deity.
Archeologists are still unearthing the 11-foot (3.5-m) monolith, which they think might be part of an entrance to an underground chamber.
At the site, excavators with pick axes and shovels hacked at the earth above the monolith while groups of archeologists, government officials and reporters waited around the deep pit.
"The importance of the monolith is what we are going to discover...It's likely that it is part of a chamber, of some offering. We won't know until we get close. First we have to get the stone out," said Alberto Diaz, a member of the archeological team.
The Aztecs, a warlike and deeply religious people who built monumental works, ruled an empire stretching from the Gulf of Mexico to the Pacific Ocean and encompassing much of modern-day central Mexico.
Their often bloody reign began in the 14th century and ended when they were subjugated in 1521 by the Spanish led by Hernan Cortes.
TALE OF THREE CITIES
The Aztecs began building the Templo Mayor pyramid-shaped temple in 1375. Its ruins are now only yards from downtown's choking traffic.
The temple was a center of human sacrifice. At one ceremony in 1487, historians say tens of thousands of victims were sacrificed, their hearts ripped out.
Spanish conquistadors destroyed the temple when they razed the city and used its stones to help build their own capital.
Now the site is surrounded by Spanish colonial buildings like Mexico City's cathedral and the historical National Palace as well as convenience stores and fast-food restaurants.
"Really, when we begin to excavate, we realize that we are in three different times, three different cities: You see the current city, the colonial city and the pre-Hispanic city," said Diaz.
The Aztec figure of Cihuateotl, dating from around 1500 A.D., is exhibited as part of 'The Aztec Empire' exhibition at the Guggenheim museum in Bilbao, Spain, March 17, 2005. Mexican archeologists have found what may be the most significant Aztec ruin in decades, with the unearthing of an altar and a monolith in the busy heart of Mexico City, Mayor Alejandro Encinas said on Wednesday. (Vincent West/Reuters)
A part of an uncovered altar shows a frieze of an agricultural deity at the Aztec empire's main Templo Mayor temple, near the central Zocalo square in Mexico City October 4, 2006. Mexican archeologists have made the most significant Aztec find in decades, unearthing a 15th century altar and a huge stone slab at a ruined temple in the throbbing heart of Mexico City. REUTERS/Tomas Bravo (MEXICO)
Bad pun in the first sentence
One of the figures discovered on the archaeological site of Templo Mayor is seen in Mexico City, Mexico, Tuesday, Oct. 3, 2006. A giant monolith and a new sanctum were discovered this past weekend at the Templo Mayor after the sixth stage of excavations at the archaeological zone. ( AP Photo/ Claudio Cruz)
Bad pun in the first sentence
You beat me to it, LOL! throbbing heart, hahahahahahha...
P.S.: what do you think? Did the author of the article know what he was doing, or was it unintentional? Place your bets.
Man, I spent at least 3 minutes looking around for the damned pun. I need to give up booze!
Ok, well, maybe not!
The most meaningful thing that has ever happened in Mexico
was when whitey introduced electricity into the area.
Since gratitude is unbecoming socially in their complex
culture they migrate north to display resentment, break
federal and local laws, vote illegally recieve benefits
and mess up apartments.
Looks like the headline writer is quite a cardio, and needs to be dealt with.
Thanks. Good find.
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I am stuned. Stuned right down to my beeber.
> By that standard, the barbarians who sacked Rome simply had a better culture.
We like to think so!
Is this the goal of Aztlan fanatics - human sacrifices?
"History is written by the victors."
- Winston Churchill
"Throbbing Heart", "Aztec Altar"? I get it! I get it!
Rome just got away from the basics. She abandoned the running game, as it were.
The Aztecs were defeated by a combination of alien technology & shrewd alliances. Cortez was able to 'divide & conquer'.
Actually, I thought the find was gonna be an ancient tunnel under the border to what is now Texas.....
...or the tunnel contained Montezuma's long-lost Weapons-of-Mass-Destruction. IIRC, Cortez took a lot of heat from the Inquisition for his failure to find them.
On an archeology thread?
Do you guys truly never ever give it a rest?
This is all just too demoralizing.
Tlaloc! The old gods return!
Personally, I just like it because it's really, really, REALLY interesting.
Edgar Allen Poe would be proud.
Very interesting find though.
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