High Altitude Archaeology in the American West

July 2, 2020

Colorado State archaeologists are continuing to study a site called High Rise village occupied 4000 years ago by the nomadic Shoshone people. This is one of the two dozen high elevation sites in the Wind River Mountains.

Alpine archaeology is a new field that was made possible by new and lighter equipment, In the 1960’s, miles of stone walls were found constructed to corral bighorn sheep. In the 1980’s, alpine villages at 12,000 feet were found in California, Nevada, and Colorado. It was long thought that these high altitude places were too hostile for sustained human occupation. Archaeologists are now trying to determine if people were driven there by population pressure or climate change.

Archaeology.org has the report here;
https://www.archaeology.org/issues/378-2005/features/8594

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr
http://michaelruggeriancientamericas.tumblr.com

June 28, 2020

Earliest Use of Maize in Central America

An international team of researchers led by UNM and University of California, Santa Barbara is investigating the use of maize by the earliest humans in Central America.

Radiocarbon dating of the skeletal samples shows the transition from pre-maize hunter-gatherer diets, where people consumed wild plants and animals, to the introduction and increasing reliance on the corn. Maize made up less than 30 percent of people’s diets in the area by 4,700 years ago, rising to 70 percent 700 years later.

Maize was domesticated from teosinte, a wild grass growing in the lower reaches of the Balsas River Valley of Central Mexico, around 9,000 years ago. There is evidence maize was first cultivated in the Maya lowlands around 6,500 years ago, at about the same time that it appears along the Pacific coast of Mexico. But there is no evidence that maize was a staple grain at that time.

The first use of corn may have been for an early form of liquor.

“We hypothesize that maize stalk juice just may have been the original use of early domesticated maize plants, at a time when the cobs and seeds were essentially too small to be of much dietary significance. Humans are really good at fermenting sugary liquids into alcoholic drinks. This changed as human selection of corn plants with larger and larger seeds coincided with genetic changes in the plants themselves, leading eventually to larger cobs, with more and larger seeds in more seed rows,” Prufer explained.

To determine the presence of maize in the diet of the ancient individuals, Prufer and his colleagues measured the carbon isotopes in the bones and teeth of 52 skeletons. The study involved the remains of male and female adults and children providing a wholistic sample of the population. The oldest remains date from between 9,600 and 8,600 years ago and continues to about 1,000 years ago

The analysis shows the oldest remains were people who ate wild plants, palms, fruits and nuts found in tropical forests and savannahs, along with meat from hunting terrestrial animals.

By 4,700 years ago, diets had become more diverse, with some individuals showing the first consumption of maize. The isotopic signature of two young nursing infants shows that their mothers were consuming substantial amounts of maize. The results show an increasing consumption of maize over the next millennium as the population transitioned to sedentary farming.

Prufer noted, “We can directly observe in isotopes of bone how maize became a staple grain in the early populations we are studying. We know that people had been experimenting with the wild ancestor of maize, teosintle, and with the earliest early maize for thousands of years, but it does not appear to have been a staple grain until about 4000 BP. After that, people never stopped eating corn, leading it to become perhaps the most important food crop in the Americas, and then in the world.”

Maize from El Gigante Rock Shelter shows early transition to staple crop
More information: D.J. Kennett at University of California, Santa Barbara in Santa Barbara, CA el al., “Early isotopic evidence for maize as a staple grain in the Americas,” Science Advances (2020). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aba3245 , advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/23/eaba3245
Provided by University of New Mexico

Phys.org has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2020-06-document-maize-mesoamerica.html

Earliest Use of Maize in Central America

June 28, 2020

An international team of researchers led by UNM and University of California, Santa Barbara is investigating the use of maize by the earliest humans in Central America.
Radiocarbon dating of the skeletal samples shows the transition from pre-maize hunter-gatherer diets, where people consumed wild plants and animals, to the introduction and increasing reliance on the corn. Maize made up less than 30 percent of people’s diets in the area by 4,700 years ago, rising to 70 percent 700 years later.
Maize was domesticated from teosinte, a wild grass growing in the lower reaches of the Balsas River Valley of Central Mexico, around 9,000 years ago. There is evidence maize was first cultivated in the Maya lowlands around 6,500 years ago, at about the same time that it appears along the Pacific coast of Mexico. But there is no evidence that maize was a staple grain at that time.


The first use of corn may have been for an early form of liquor.


“We hypothesize that maize stalk juice just may have been the original use of early domesticated maize plants, at a time when the cobs and seeds were essentially too small to be of much dietary significance. Humans are really good at fermenting sugary liquids into alcoholic drinks. This changed as human selection of corn plants with larger and larger seeds coincided with genetic changes in the plants themselves, leading eventually to larger cobs, with more and larger seeds in more seed rows,” Prufer explained.


To determine the presence of maize in the diet of the ancient individuals, Prufer and his colleagues measured the carbon isotopes in the bones and teeth of 52 skeletons. The study involved the remains of male and female adults and children providing a wholistic sample of the population. The oldest remains date from between 9,600 and 8,600 years ago and continues to about 1,000 years ago


The analysis shows the oldest remains were people who ate wild plants, palms, fruits and nuts found in tropical forests and savannahs, along with meat from hunting terrestrial animals.


By 4,700 years ago, diets had become more diverse, with some individuals showing the first consumption of maize. The isotopic signature of two young nursing infants shows that their mothers were consuming substantial amounts of maize. The results show an increasing consumption of maize over the next millennium as the population transitioned to sedentary farming.


Prufer noted, “We can directly observe in isotopes of bone how maize became a staple grain in the early populations we are studying. We know that people had been experimenting with the wild ancestor of maize, teosintle, and with the earliest early maize for thousands of years, but it does not appear to have been a staple grain until about 4000 BP. After that, people never stopped eating corn, leading it to become perhaps the most important food crop in the Americas, and then in the world.”


Maize from El Gigante Rock Shelter shows early transition to staple crop

More information: D.J. Kennett at University of California, Santa Barbara in Santa Barbara, CA el al., “Early isotopic evidence for maize as a staple grain in the Americas,” Science Advances (2020). DOI: 10.1126/sciadv.aba3245 , advances.sciencemag.org/content/6/23/eaba3245 Provided by University of New Mexico

Phys.org has the report here; https://phys.org/news/2020-06-document-maize-mesoamerica.html

June 13, 2020

Large Scale Research on Food Remains over 2000 Years at the Maya Site of Ceibal, Guatemala.

35,000 tiny bone and shell fragments from the Maya site of Ceibal (1000 BCE-1200 CE), Guatemala reveal the ups and downs of the Maya during their 2000 years. Researchers from Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the University of Arizona, the University of Ibaraki, Japan and Guatemala’s Institute of Anthropology and History and Universidad de San Carlos took part in the study.

They found a dramatic shift in diet from apple snails and mollusks to vertebrate such as deer. Perhaps diverting water for irrigation dried up water sources There were many different dogs, and indications that some were eaten.

An adult male buried at 700-450 BCE was buried with hundreds of apple snails, maybe a burial feast. The shift to fish, turtle and deer happened 2000 years ago. There is evidence of deforestation and erosion around 200 CE which destroyed wetland habitats. The number of turtles found indicate the Maya at Ceibal may have imported turtles. The elite consumed deer and lower classes ate armadillo, rabbits, pacas, agoutis, possums, raccoons, weasels and armadillos, anteaters and even an occasional peccary or tapir.

A few entire dog skeletons were found intentionally buried under the floors, leading to the idea that some dogs may have been pets.

Turkeys were imported after the Pre-Classic, probably from Central Mexico.

Ceibal elites wore feline paws and skins on stelae. In a trash heap behind the royal palace, researchers discovered margay and kinkajou mandibles, the arm of an anteater, a bull shark tooth, and sea urchin spines, perhaps also the remains of costumes or other royal paraphernalia.

“Then suddenly everything stopped around 950 AD during the famous ’Maya Collapse’ when all the cities were abandoned,” Sharpe said “Only a few people occasionally returned to the edges of the site in the centuries after that.”

“The focus of Maya archaeology up until now has been large monumental sites, and especially the royal elites during the Classic period,” Sharpe said. “We hope to excavate residences and older sites to get a better idea of what society was like for the majority of the Maya people.”

The research is published in the journal PLOS One.

Smithsonian has the report here with lots of slides;
https://stri.si.edu/story/buried-snails

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Large Scale Research on Food Remains over 2000 Years at the Maya Site of Ceibal, Guatemala.

June 13, 2020

 

35,000 tiny bone and shell fragments from the Maya site of Ceibal (1000 BCE-1200 CE), Guatemala reveal the ups and downs of the Maya during their 2000 years. Researchers from Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute, the University of Arizona, the University of Ibaraki, Japan and Guatemala’s Institute of Anthropology and History and Universidad de San Carlos took part in the study.

They found a dramatic shift in diet from apple snails and mollusks to vertebrate such as deer. Perhaps diverting water for irrigation dried up water sources There were many different dogs, and indications that some were eaten.

An adult male buried at 700-450 BCE was buried with hundreds of apple snails, maybe a burial feast. The shift to fish, turtle and deer happened 2000 years ago. There is evidence of deforestation and erosion around 200 CE which destroyed wetland habitats. The number of turtles found indicate the Maya at Ceibal may have imported turtles. The elite consumed deer and lower classes ate armadillo, rabbits, pacas, agoutis, possums, raccoons, weasels and armadillos, anteaters and even an occasional peccary or tapir.

A few entire dog skeletons were found intentionally buried under the floors, leading to the idea that some dogs may have been pets.

Turkeys were imported after the Pre-Classic, probably from Central Mexico.

Ceibal elites wore feline paws and skins on stelae. In a trash heap behind the royal palace, researchers discovered margay and kinkajou mandibles, the arm of an anteater, a bull shark tooth, and sea urchin spines, perhaps also the remains of costumes or other royal paraphernalia.

“Then suddenly everything stopped around 950 AD during the famous ’Maya Collapse’ when all the cities were abandoned,” Sharpe said “Only a few people occasionally returned to the edges of the site in the centuries after that.”
“The focus of Maya archaeology up until now has been large monumental sites, and especially the royal elites during the Classic period,” Sharpe said. “We hope to excavate residences and older sites to get a better idea of what society was like for the majority of the Maya people.”

The research is published in the journal PLOS One.

Smithsonian has the report here with lots of slides;
https://stri.si.edu/story/buried-snails

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

LARGEST AND OLDEST MAYA TEMPLE DISCOVERED

LIDAR has uncovered a site called Aguada Fenix in Tabasco, Mexico dated to 1000-800 BCE. It stand 8-10 meters high with nine causeways leading to it. It is larger then the pyramid of Giza. Jade axes and other artifacts have been found. There are no sculptures of elites at the site and the structures there may have been built largely by migratory peoples.

CNN has the report here with photos;
https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/03/world/biggest-oldest-mayan-temple-aguada-fnix-archeology-scn/index.html

Lead archaeologist Takeshi Inomata, an archaeologist at the University of Arizona uncovered the site using LIDAR after seeing a map published in 2011 covering a large area of Tabasco and Chiapas. Dr. Inomata could see sites below the jungle canopy, and using LIDAR from the information on this map has found 27 previously unknown sites. These sites had construction styles never seen before.

Dr. Inomata and his team began studying Ceibal to understand the relationship between the earlier Olmec culture and the Maya. Ceibal had many Olmec style artifacts. So the team spread out from Ceibal. And they found the 2011 map which made the job much easier.

And they are uncovering rectangular platforms that are low, and some two-thirds of a mile long. These newly discovered 27 sites are also contemporaneous with Ceibal at 1000-800 BCE. The amount of labor involved in building these structures is staggering. And they were built with mobile populations in massive communal enterprises.

A NY Times report in 2019 talks of the early work by Dr. Inomata in the area using the free map they used to locate the new sites.
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/08/science/archaeology-lidar-maya.html

The new huge pyramid at Aguada Fenix was built of earth and clay. It is a quarter-mile wide and nine-tenths of a mile long. Besides the nine large causeways, there is a series of reservoirs linked to the structure.

The Guardian has that report here;
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/jun/03/maya-structure-discovered-mexico-lidar-aguada-fenix

Phys.org has a video here;
https://phys.org/news/2020-06-largest-oldest-maya-monument-importance.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

LARGEST AND OLDEST MAYA TEMPLE DISCOVERED

June 3, 2020

LIDAR has uncovered a site called Aguada Fenix in Tabasco, Mexico dated to 1000-800 BCE. It stand 8-10 meters high with nine causeways leading to it. It is larger then the pyramid of Giza. Jade axes and other artifacts have been found. There are no sculptures of elites at the site and the structures there may have been built largely by migratory peoples.

CNN has the report here with photos;
https://www.cnn.com/2020/06/03/world/biggest-oldest-mayan-temple-aguada-fnix-archeology-scn/index.html

Lead archaeologist Takeshi Inomata, an archaeologist at the University of Arizona uncovered the site using LIDAR after seeing a map published in 2011 covering a large area of Tabasco and Chiapas. Dr. Inomata could see sites below the jungle canopy, and using LIDAR from the information on this map has found 27 previously unknown sites. These sites had construction styles never seen before.

Dr. Inomata and his team began studying Ceibal to understand the relationship between the earlier Olmec culture and the Maya. Ceibal had many Olmec style artifacts. So the team spread out from Ceibal. And they found the 2011 map which made the job much easier.

And they are uncovering rectangular platforms that are low, and some two-thirds of a mile long. These newly discovered 27 sites are also contemporaneous with Ceibal at 1000-800 BCE. The amount of labor involved in building these structures is staggering. And they were built with mobile populations in massive communal enterprises.

A NY Times report in 2019 talks of the early work by Dr. Inomata in the area using the free map they used to locate the new sites.
https://www.nytimes.com/2019/10/08/science/archaeology-lidar-maya.html

The new huge pyramid at Aguada Fenix was built of earth and clay. It is a quarter-mile wide and nine-tenths of a mile long. Besides the nine large causeways, there is a series of reservoirs linked to the structure.

The Guardian has that report here;
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2020/jun/03/maya-structure-discovered-mexico-lidar-aguada-fenix

Phys.org has a video here;
https://phys.org/news/2020-06-largest-oldest-maya-monument-importance.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

 

 

March 25, 2020

Huge Mammoth Burial Site Uncovered North of Mexico City

INAH has uncovered a huge burial of over 60 mammoths and 15 humans at the General Felipe Ángeles International Airport north of Mexico City. Three exploration areas are being studied. The mammoth burials date to 12,000 years ago. The mammoths were stuck in the mud of what was then Lake Xaltocan. Humans may or may not have been involved in getting them there.

The farmers were buried with pots, bowls and clay figurines in domestic style burials. The human burials nearby are from a much later time period, 750-950 CE.

INAH has the report here (In Spanish);
https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/9150-hallazgos-en-la-obra-del-nuevo-aeropuerto-felipe-angeles-reconstruyen-el-devenir-de-la-cuenca-de-mexico

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Word Press
https://wordpress.com/home/mikeruggerisancientamericasnews.wordpress.com

Huge Mammoth Burial Site Uncovered North of Mexico City

May 25, 2020

INAH has uncovered a huge burial of over 60 mammoths and 15 humans at the General Felipe Ángeles International Airport north of Mexico City. Three exploration areas are being studied. The mammoth burials date to 12,000 years ago. The mammoths were stuck in the mud of what was then Lake Xaltocan. Humans may or may not have been involved in getting them there.

The farmers were buried with pots, bowls and clay figurines in domestic style burials. The human burials nearby are from a much later time period, 750-950 CE.

INAH has the report here (In Spanish);
https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/9150-hallazgos-en-la-obra-del-nuevo-aeropuerto-felipe-angeles-reconstruyen-el-devenir-de-la-cuenca-de-mexico

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Word Press
https://wordpress.com/home/mikeruggerisancientamericasnews.wordpress.com

May 19, 2020

New Research on Maize Cultivation at Cahokia

The inhabitants of Cahokia began to cultivate corn between 900-1000 CE. Corn cultivation spread from Mesoamerica to the Ancient Southwest at 4000 BCE.

Researchers determined the age of charred corn kernels in homes and shrines at Cahokia and also studied the carbon isotopes in the teeth and bones of humans and dogs. They found that corn consumption began abruptly at 950-1000 CE at Cahokia. At the same time, mound construction began at Cahokia. The population exploded and fertility iconography appeared.

The reason why corn cultivation started so late in the Mid-West was that it had to adapt to survive in a northerly climate.

The new research is published in American Antiquity;
Thomas E. Emerson et al, Isotopic Confirmation of the Timing and Intensity of Maize Consumption in Greater Cahokia, American Antiquity (2020).  DOI: 10.1017/aaq.2020.7

PHYS.ORG has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2020-05-cahokia-parallels-onset-corn-agriculture.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Cahokia
https://mikeruggerisancientcahokla.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient North America News
https://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

New Research on Maize Cultivation at Cahokia

MAY 19, 2020

The inhabitants of Cahokia began to cultivate corn between 900-1000 CE. Corn cultivation spread from Mesoamerica to the Ancient Southwest at 4000 BCE.

Researchers determined the age of charred corn kernels in homes and shrines at Cahokia and also studied the carbon isotopes in the teeth and bones of humans and dogs. They found that corn consumption began abruptly at 950-1000 CE at Cahokia. At the same time, mound construction began at Cahokia. The population exploded and fertility iconography appeared.

The reason why corn cultivation started so late in the Mid-West was that it had to adapt to survive in a northerly climate.

The new research is published in American Antiquity;
Thomas E. Emerson et al, Isotopic Confirmation of the Timing and Intensity of Maize Consumption in Greater Cahokia, American Antiquity (2020). DOI: 10.1017/aaq.2020.7

PHYS.ORG has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2020-05-cahokia-parallels-onset-corn-agriculture.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Cahokia
https://mikeruggerisancientcahokla.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient North America News
https://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

May 15, 2020

Large Ancient Andean Genome Study

Harvard and U.of C, Santa Cruz researchers, and researchers from Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Chile, Germany, Peru, the United Kingdom and the United States, undertook a genome study of 89 Ancient Andeans who lived between 500-9000 years ago, including the Moche, Nasca, Wari, Tiwanaku and Inca. They found that groups in the Andean highlands became genetically distinct from those along the Pacific Coast. North and South groups differentiated from each other 5,800 years ago.

They found genetic mixing between the Andes, south Peru, Argentina, and the Amazon. This demonstrates large migrations. Now they need to find out more about those migrations. There was genetic continuity among large scale Andean populations like the Moche Wari, and Nasca, so invading military forces did not alter the genetics of the population.

The research is published in the Journal Cell

Harvard.edu has the report here;
https://hms.harvard.edu/news/ancient-andes-analyzed

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Large Ancient Andean Genome Study

May 15, 2020

Harvard and U.of C, Santa Cruz researchers, and researchers from Argentina, Australia, Bolivia, Chile, Germany, Peru, the United Kingdom and the United States, undertook a genome study of 89 Ancient Andeans who lived between 500-9000 years ago, including the Moche, Nasca, Wari, Tiwanaku and Inca. They found that groups in the Andean highlands became genetically distinct from those along the Pacific Coast. North and South groups differentiated from each other 5,800 years ago.

They found genetic mixing between the Andes, south Peru, Argentina, and the Amazon. This demonstrates large migrations. Now they need to find out more about those migrations. There was genetic continuity among large scale Andean populations like the Moche Wari, and Nasca, so invading military forces did not alter the genetics of the population.

The research is published in the Journal Cell

Harvard.edu has the report here;
https://hms.harvard.edu/news/ancient-andes-analyzed

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

May 10, 2020

Oldest Bonfires on the Yucatan Peninsula Discovered

UNAM/INAH researchers have discovered the oldest traces of bonfires in the Yucatan region in the cave of Aktun-Ha in Quintana Roo. The fires are 10,500 years old. The now underwater cave was dry at that time. 13,000 years ago, migrants from central Mexico arrived in Quintana Too. 8 skeletons have been found with skulls different than the native inhabitants, adapted to a colder climate and weighing less and smaller.
The caves were used by the inhabitants for funeral and ritual activities.

The entrance to the now flooded cave is through a cenote. The researchers had to ensure the coals they found were not transported by water to the site. Various scientific testing method proved that the age of the fires was determined to be 10,500 years old and were produced right there.

The research is published in the journal Geoarchaeology. The work was financed by UNAM, the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and the National Geographic Society.

The Yucatan Times has the story with photos here;
https://www.theyucatantimes.com/2020/05/tulum-cenote-reveals-10500-year-old-secrets/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya in Quintana Roo Magazine
http://bit.ly/1DY0uZR

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Oldest Bonfires on the Yucatan Peninsula Discovered

May 10, 2020

UNAM/INAH researchers have discovered the oldest traces of bonfires in the Yucatan region in the cave of Aktun-Ha in Quintana Roo. The fires are 10,500 years old. The now underwater cave was dry at that time. 13,000 years ago, migrants from central Mexico arrived in Quintana Too. 8 skeletons have been found with skulls different than the native inhabitants, adapted to a colder climate and weighing less and smaller.
The caves were used by the inhabitants for funeral and ritual activities.

The entrance to the now flooded cave is through a cenote. The researchers had to ensure the coals they found were not transported by water to the site. Various scientific testing method proved that the age of the fires was determined to be 10,500 years old and were produced right there.

The research is published in the journal Geoarchaeology. The work was financed by UNAM, the University of Santiago de Compostela, Spain, and the National Geographic Society.

The Yucatan Times has the story with photos here;
https://www.theyucatantimes.com/2020/05/tulum-cenote-reveals-10500-year-old-secrets/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya in Quintana Roo Magazine
http://bit.ly/1DY0uZR

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

May 6, 2020

The Virtual Re-Construction of the Site of Tingambato in Michoacan.

Archaeologists in the 1970’s excavated the site of Tingambato in Michoacan. They uncovered monumental structures, a ball game and a massive burial of 150 people.

INAH archaeologists have announced that drones, LIDAR and high resolution cameras have enabled the virtual reconstruction of the site as it looked at 500 CE. These new discoveries have established a small connection to Teotihuacan at the site, given some architectural styles.

They have found that the site had 3 occupation horizons. 0-300 CE, 300-550 CE and 550-900 CE. Some of the inhabitants of Teotihuacan may have fled back to their home at Tingambato.

They are also virtually re-constructing the two large tombs at the site. 100 were found in Tomb 1. And in Tomb 2, only one individual was buried. A women between 15-29 years of age with cranial deformation with 19,428 lapidary and shell objects, many of them exotic and imported.

INAH has the report here with a really great slide show of the site and its artifacts here. (In Spanish), (Click on the little green camera icon to see the slideshow)
https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/9119-con-nuevas-tecnologias-reconstruyen-virtualmente-la-ciudad-prehispanica-de-tingambato-en-michoacan

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient West Mexico
http://mikeruggerisancientwestmexico.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient West Mexico World on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientwestmexicoworld.home.blog

The Virtual Re-Construction of the Site of Tingambato in Michoacan.

May 6, 2020

Archaeologists in the 1970’s excavated the site of Tingambato in Michoacan. They uncovered monumental structures, a ball game and a massive burial of 150 people. 
INAH archaeologists have announced that drones, LIDAR and high resolution cameras have enabled the virtual reconstruction of the site as it looked at 500 CE. These new discoveries have established a small connection to Teotihuacan at the site, given some architectural styles.


They have found that the site had 3 occupation horizons. 0-300 CE, 300-550 CE and 550-900 CE. Some of the inhabitants of Teotihuacan may have fled back to their home at Tingambato.
They are also virtually re-constructing the two large tombs at the site. 100 were found in Tomb 1. And in Tomb 2, only one individual was buried. A women between 15-29 years of age with cranial deformation with 19,428 lapidary and shell objects, many of them exotic and imported.


INAH has the report here with a really great slide show of the site and its artifacts here. (In Spanish), (Click on the little green camera icon to see the slideshow)

https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/9119-con-nuevas-tecnologias-reconstruyen-virtualmente-la-ciudad-prehispanica-de-tingambato-en-michoacan


Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient West Mexico
http://mikeruggerisancientwestmexico.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient West Mexico World on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientwestmexicoworld.home.blog

April 29, 2029

Mesoamerica Heart Extraction Research

Vera Tiesler and Guilhem Olivier have published the results of their Mesoamerica heart extraction in Current Anthropology; “Open Chests and Broken Hearts: Ritual Sequences and Meanings of Human Heart Sacrifice in Mesoamerica.”

They studied anatomical analysis of skeletal evidence and compared it with systematically checked historical sources and over 200 instances of ceremonial heart extraction in codices. They focused on the location of openings created in the chest to allow for the removal of a victim’s heart and blood. They examined the resulting fractures and marks in articulated skeletons to infer about the nature of the entry wound and the potential instrumentation used.

Three distinct heart extraction methods were used;  cutting directly under the ribs (subdiaphragmatic thoracotomy); making an incision between two ribs (intercostal thoracotomy); or by horizontally severing the sternum in order to access the heart (transverse bilateral thoracotomy).

The reason for this practice was as a source of “vitalizing matter,” or food for the gods. Hearts and blood were offered as sustenance to deities representing the sun and the earth in recognition of their sacrifices during the creation of the universe. Data–including linguistic analysis of ancient Mesoamerican terminology–reinforce suggestions that these rites served as acts of obligation, reciprocation, and re-enactment.

News360 has the report here;
https://news360.com/article/526610248

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

(Scroll down to Aztec Human Sacrifice)

Mesoamerica Heart Extraction Research

April 29, 2020

Vera Tiesler and Guilhem Olivier have published the results of their Mesoamerica heart extraction in Current Anthropology; “Open Chests and Broken Hearts: Ritual Sequences and Meanings of Human Heart Sacrifice in Mesoamerica.”

They studied anatomical analysis of skeletal evidence and compared it with systematically checked historical sources and over 200 instances of ceremonial heart extraction in codices. They focused on the location of openings created in the chest to allow for the removal of a victim’s heart and blood. They examined the resulting fractures and marks in articulated skeletons to infer about the nature of the entry wound and the potential instrumentation used.

Three distinct heart extraction methods were used; cutting directly under the ribs (subdiaphragmatic thoracotomy); making an incision between two ribs (intercostal thoracotomy); or by horizontally severing the sternum in order to access the heart (transverse bilateral thoracotomy).

The reason for this practice was as a source of “vitalizing matter,” or food for the gods. Hearts and blood were offered as sustenance to deities representing the sun and the earth in recognition of their sacrifices during the creation of the universe. Data–including linguistic analysis of ancient Mesoamerican terminology–reinforce suggestions that these rites served as acts of obligation, reciprocation, and re-enactment.

News360 has the report here;
https://news360.com/article/526610248

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

(Scroll down to Aztec Human Sacrifice)

April 23, 2020

The Rise and Fall of the Wari Complex of Cerro Baul in Peru

1,400 years ago, Wari colonists arrived in the Moquegua Valley in southern Peru. They occupied high dry land no one had used. They built a regional capital at the site of Cerro Baul, where they built large government structures and erected canals and aqueducts that carried water further than anyone had ever attempted. They carved mountain slopes into agricultural terraces, which captured rain and snowmelt to plots of maize, quinoa, berries to make beer. People moved there to create a large labor force.

Archaeologist Patrick Ryan Williams of the Field Museum calls the Wari strategy “conquest by hydraulic superiority.

Despite the Wari very violent aggression in other areas of Peru, they built a multi-ethnic society of relative peace in the Cerro Baul area for 400 years. Wari, Tiwanaku and local communities lived together from 600-1000 CE. Each culture maintained its own styles of pottery, architecture, temples and burials.

A huge earthquake destroyed the aqueduct system around 900 CE, and its appears the Wari had a hard time getting a work force to fix the damage completely.  And then an extreme drought took place at a time that the aqueduct system was weaker. At 1050, the Cerro Baul structures were abandoned, and in a huge end times feast, rooms were burned, a brewery was destroyed, and smashed drinking vessels were placed on top.

Science Magazine has the detailed report of an international team of archaeologists here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/04/shrewd-water-use-helped-south-america-s-first-empire-thrive-so-why-did-drought-destroy

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

The Rise and Fall of the Wari Complex of Cerro Baul in Peru

April 23, 2020

1,400 years ago, Wari colonists arrived in the Moquegua Valley in southern Peru. They occupied high dry land no one had used. They built a regional capital at the site of Cerro Baul, where they built large government structures and erected canals and aqueducts that carried water further than anyone had ever attempted. They carved mountain slopes into agricultural terraces, which captured rain and snowmelt to plots of maize, quinoa, berries to make beer. People moved there to create a large labor force.

Archaeologist Patrick Ryan Williams of the Field Museum calls the Wari strategy “conquest by hydraulic superiority.

Despite the Wari very violent aggression in other areas of Peru, they built a multi-ethnic society of relative peace in the Cerro Baul area for 400 years. Wari, Tiwanaku and local communities lived together from 600-1000 CE. Each culture maintained its own styles of pottery, architecture, temples and burials.

A huge earthquake destroyed the aqueduct system around 900 CE, and its appears the Wari had a hard time getting a work force to fix the damage completely. And then an extreme drought took place at a time that the aqueduct system was weaker. At 1050, the Cerro Baul structures were abandoned, and in a huge end times feast, rooms were burned, a brewery was destroyed, and smashed drinking vessels were placed on top.

Science Magazine has the detailed report of an international team of archaeologists here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/04/shrewd-water-use-helped-south-america-s-first-empire-thrive-so-why-did-drought-destroy

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

April 15, 2020

Mysterious Decorated Mud Balls Excavated at the Ancient Poverty Point site in Louisiana

Abstract highly decorated mud balls have been excavated at the ancient Poverty Point Site in Louisiana. They were baked to make them durable through the ages. The designs are abstract, and the patterns represent Spider webs, lotus pods, the sun, an owl. They are dated to 1700 BCE. Poverty Point inhabitants used cooking balls to prepare food, using them as hot rocks. These are different.

These decorated balls were made from soil as far away as the Tennessee River Valley and the Gulf Coast, hundreds of miles away. Were pilgrims bringing these balls to Poverty Point?

The Belleville News Democrat has the report here with a photo of the artifacts.
https://www.bnd.com/news/nation-world/national/article241821501.html

And the extensive research on this is at Researchgate;
Poverty Point Objects Re-Considered;
https://www.researchgate.net/publication/304610019_Poverty_Point_Objects_Reconsidered

For more on the ancient Poverty Point site;
https://michaelruggeri.com/THE_MISSISSIPPIAN_WORLD_AND_THE_MOUND_BUILDERS/MIKE_RUGGERIS_MISSISSIPPIAN_WORLD.html

Mysterious Decorated Mud Balls Excavated at the Ancient Poverty Point site in Louisiana

April 15, 2020

Abstract highly decorated mud balls have been excavated at the ancient Poverty Point Site in Louisiana. They were baked to make them durable through the ages. The designs are abstract, and the patterns represent Spider webs, lotus pods, the sun, an owl. They are dated to 1700 BCE. Poverty Point inhabitants used cooking balls to prepare food, using them as hot rocks. These are different.

These decorated balls were made from soil as far away as the Tennessee River Valley and the Gulf Coast, hundreds of miles away. Were pilgrims bringing these balls to Poverty Point?

The Belleville News Democrat has the report here with a photo of the artifacts.
https://www.bnd.com/news/nation-world/national/article241821501.html

And the extensive research on this is at Researchgate;Poverty Point Objects Re-Considered;https://www.researchgate.net/publication/304610019_Poverty_Point_Objects_Reconsidered


For more on the ancient Poverty Point site;
https://michaelruggeri.com/THE_MISSISSIPPIAN_WORLD_AND_THE_MOUND_BUILDERS/MIKE_RUGGERIS_MISSISSIPPIAN_WORLD.html

April 6, 2020

Calusa People Stored Live Fish in Watercourts

The Calusa were a hunter/gatherer/fisher society in Florida and the island of Mound Key

New research indicates they captured and stored fish in walled structures called watercourses made of shell and sediments. They walled off parts of an estuary for short term holding before eating, smoking or drying the fish.

Remote sensing has revealed two large shell mounds, a grand canal, and two large watercourses. A marine highway of 2,000 feet long and 100 feet wide bisected the key. There was a yards long opening to drive fish into the enclosures which would be closed with a gate or net. These structures were built at 1300-1400 CE

The research was published in PNAS;
Victor D. Thompson et al. Ancient engineering of fish capture and storage in southwest Florida. PNAS, published online March 30, 2020; doi: 10.1073/pnas.1921708117

Sci-News has the report here.
http://www.sci-news.com/archaeology/calusa-watercourts-08288.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Mississippian World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1EhnzvE

Calusa People Stored Live Fish in Watercourts

April 6, 2020

The Calusa were a hunter/gatherer/fisher society in Florida and the island of Mound Key

New research indicates they captured and stored fish in walled structures called watercourses made of shell and sediments. They walled off parts of an estuary for short term holding before eating, smoking or drying the fish.

Remote sensing has revealed two large shell mounds, a grand canal, and two large watercourses. A marine highway of 2,000 feet long and 100 feet wide bisected the key. There was a yards long opening to drive fish into the enclosures which would be closed with a gate or net. These structures were built at 1300-1400 CE

The research was published in PNAS;
Victor D. Thompson et al. Ancient engineering of fish capture and storage in southwest Florida. PNAS, published online March 30, 2020; doi: 10.1073/pnas.1921708117

Sci-News has the report here.
http://www.sci-news.com/archaeology/calusa-watercourts-08288.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Mississippian World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1EhnzvE

March 31, 2020

Exciting New Research on Teotihuacan/Maya Events at Tikal

On January 16, 378 CE, Sihyaj K’ahk’ (SEE-yah Kak), or Fire is Born entered Tikal in Guatemala. He may have been from Teotihuacan and may have entered with an army. Maya monuments at the site record the event. Chak Tok Ich’aak, or Jaguar Paw, the long-reigning king of Tikal, died on the day he arrived. He may have been sent by Spearthrower Owl whose son became king of Tikal within 2 years. His name was Yax Nuun Ayiin, He has a Teotihuacan style atlatl and headdress, and the images of him and his father at Tikal are drawn in a Teo style. Tikal became very powerful thereafter.
There is controversy about these interpretations. The new rulers may have been Maya royalty who adopted Teo symbolism.

A team of archaeologists have uncovered the evidence of a giant feast dated at 300-350 CE, They have excavated so far 10,000 ceramic pieces and an additional 250 pieces are excavated each day. They believe Maya and Teotihuacano guests were at the feast together, The team has excavated a compound of buildings with vivid murals. Perhaps the Teotihuacano guests were diplomats and nobles sent to cement royal marriages and alliances. Decades after the feast, the murals were smashed and buried. Faces were obliterated. This destruction took place at 350-400 CE.

Nearby, a mass burial has been found, the bodies in pieces. Some skulls have flat backs and dental jewelry that are Maya in style. DNA and dietary isotopes will be taken to see if these are Maya people. The bones were dumped in the burial pit at the time of the feast.

There is evidence that the new ruler at Tikal expanded his influence over a wide area.  Teo style murals show up at Holmul 25 miles away. Friendly kings were established at many Maya cities. But there is little evidence of Teo people living at Tikal. Sihyaj K’ahk may have been a Maya usurper using the Teotihuacan attire and symbolism to enhance his power. Isotopic analysis shows he grew up near Tikal. Other archaeologists are looking for real evidence of a Teotihuacan conquest. LIDAR has found possible fortifications with watch towers nearby Tikal. Excavations of these sites will begin in May. They may find whether these places were built by the Teotihuacanos or the Maya.

The detailed report on this new and exciting research is published in Science magazine with photos;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/astounding-new-finds-suggest-ancient-empire-may-be-hiding-plain-sight

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Teotihuacan World on Word Press
https://mikeruggeristeotihuacanworld.home.blog

Exciting New Research on Teotihuacan/Maya Events at Tikal

March 31, 2020

On January 16, 378 CE, Sihyaj K’ahk’ (SEE-yah Kak), or Fire is Born entered Tikal in Guatemala. He may have been from Teotihuacan and may have entered with an army. Maya monuments at the site record the event. Chak Tok Ich’aak, or Jaguar Paw, the long-reigning king of Tikal, died on the day he arrived. He may have been sent by Spearthrower Owl whose son became king of Tikal within 2 years. His name was Yax Nuun Ayiin, He has a Teotihuacan style atlatl and headdress, and the images of him and his father at Tikal are drawn in a Teo style. Tikal became very powerful thereafter.
There is controversy about these interpretations. The new rulers may have been Maya royalty who adopted Teo symbolism.

A team of archaeologists have uncovered the evidence of a giant feast dated at 300-350 CE, They have excavated so far 10,000 ceramic pieces and an additional 250 pieces are excavated each day. They believe Maya and Teotihuacano guests were at the feast together, The team has excavated a compound of buildings with vivid murals. Perhaps the Teotihuacano guests were diplomats and nobles sent to cement royal marriages and alliances. Decades after the feast, the murals were smashed and buried. Faces were obliterated. This destruction took place at 350-400 CE.

Nearby, a mass burial has been found, the bodies in pieces. Some skulls have flat backs and dental jewelry that are Maya in style. DNA and dietary isotopes will be taken to see if these are Maya people. The bones were dumped in the burial pit at the time of the feast.

There is evidence that the new ruler at Tikal expanded his influence over a wide area. Teo style murals show up at Holmul 25 miles away. Friendly kings were established at many Maya cities. But there is little evidence of Teo people living at Tikal. Sihyaj K’ahk may have been a Maya usurper using the Teotihuacan attire and symbolism to enhance his power. Isotopic analysis shows he grew up near Tikal. Other archaeologists are looking for real evidence of a Teotihuacan conquest. LIDAR has found possible fortifications with watch towers nearby Tikal. Excavations of these sites will begin in May. They may find whether these places were built by the Teotihuacanos or the Maya.

The detailed report on this new and exciting research is published in Science magazine with photos;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/02/astounding-new-finds-suggest-ancient-empire-may-be-hiding-plain-sight

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Teotihuacan World on Word Press
https://mikeruggeristeotihuacanworld.home.blog

March 23, 2020

The Ancient Chiapas Site of Sak Tz’i’ Research

A local farmer in Chiapas found a 2 by 4 feet ancient Maya tablet in the community of Lacanja Tzeltal. It turned out that this tablet is at the Maya site of Sak Tz’i’. This place is referenced in sculptors and inscriptions across the Maya world. The tablets tell a story about a water serpent, unnamed gods, a mythic flood and accounts of the births, deaths and battles of ancient rulers. The tablets meanings were announced at Brandeis University. The site was on the border between Mexico and Guatemala.

It was settled in 750 CE and was occupied for more than 1,000 years. It was protected by a stream with a steep ravine on one side and defensive walls on the other side. It probably made alliances for protection. There is a figure of a dancing figure on the excavated tablet, probably of the god Yoopat, associated with violent storms. He is holding a lightning bolt axe and a stone weapon. Another sculpture at the site tells of a fire at the site during a conflict.

Since summer of 2018, when the local farmer found the tablet,  archaeologists have excavated pyramids, a royal palace, a ball court and a ceremonial plaza. One pyramid has carved stelae around it. Lidar will be employed for further research.

The research is published in the December 2019 Journal of Field Archaeology.

Live Science has the report here with photos.
https://www.livescience.com/maya-kingdom-discovered-in-mexico.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Chiapas Magazine
http://bit.ly/1CetbSr

The Ancient Chiapas Site of Sak Tz’i’ Research

March 23, 2020

A local farmer in Chiapas found a 2 by 4 feet ancient Maya tablet in the community of Lacanja Tzeltal. It turned out that this tablet is at the Maya site of Sak Tz’i’. This place is referenced in sculptors and inscriptions across the Maya world. The tablets tell a story about a water serpent, unnamed gods, a mythic flood and accounts of the births, deaths and battles of ancient rulers. The tablets meanings were announced at Brandeis University. The site was on the border between Mexico and Guatemala.

It was settled in 750 CE and was occupied for more than 1,000 years. It was protected by a stream with a steep ravine on one side and defensive walls on the other side. It probably made alliances for protection. There is a figure of a dancing figure on the excavated tablet, probably of the god Yoopat, associated with violent storms. He is holding a lightning bolt axe and a stone weapon. Another sculpture at the site tells of a fire at the site during a conflict.

Since summer of 2018, when the local farmer found the tablet, archaeologists have excavated pyramids, a royal palace, a ball court and a ceremonial plaza. One pyramid has carved stelae around it. Lidar will be employed for further research.

The research is published in the December 2019 Journal of Field Archaeology.

Live Science has the report here with photos.
https://www.livescience.com/maya-kingdom-discovered-in-mexico.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Chiapas Magazine
http://bit.ly/1CetbSr

March 17, 2020

Oldest Mesoamerican Ball Court in the Mesoamerican Highlands Uncovered

An ancient Mesoamerica ball court has been discovered. It has been excavated at the 3,400 year old site of Etlatongo in Oaxaca. The archaeological team has been excavating at the site since 2015. The court was built at 1305-1443 BCE. The only older one is at the site of Paso de la Amada in Chiapas built at 1650 BCE. The case that this was a ball court was made stronger when they dug up ball play figurines wearing padded belts at the site.

The oldest Olmec city, San Lorenzo, is 25 miles away and Etlatongo is high in the mountains. Could this mean that the ball game was older than the ones in the Olmec heartland, and therefore goes farther back in time through Mesoamerica? (My note; Paso de la Amada in Chiapas, which is older, has Olmec type characteristics, so this new idea needs a lot more study.)

And Annick Daneels at UNAM points out that the the ball player figurines and pottery at Etlatongo have Olmec characteristics.

And San Lorenzo, the oldest Olmec city has only been partially excavated. There may be older ball courts there.

Science News has the report here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/03/3400-year-old-ballgame-court-unearthed-mountains-mexico

Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

Oldest Mesoamerican Ball Court in the Mesoamerican Highlands Uncovered

March 17, 2020

An ancient Mesoamerica ball court has been discovered. It has been excavated at the 3,400 year old site of Etlatongo in Oaxaca. The archaeological team has been excavating at the site since 2015. The court was built at 1305-1443 BCE. The only older one is at the site of Paso de la Amada in Chiapas built at 1650 BCE. The case that this was a ball court was made stronger when they dug up ball play figurines wearing padded belts at the site.
The oldest Olmec city, San Lorenzo, is 25 miles away and Etlatongo is high in the mountains. Could this mean that the ball game was older than the ones in the Olmec heartland, and therefore goes farther back in time through Mesoamerica? (My note; Paso de la Amada in Chiapas, which is older, has Olmec type characteristics, so this new idea needs a lot more study.)
And Annick Daneels at UNAM points out that the the ball player figurines and pottery at Etlatongo have Olmec characteristics.
And San Lorenzo, the oldest Olmec city has only been partially excavated. There may be older ball courts there.


Science News has the report here;

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2020/03/3400-year-old-ballgame-court-unearthed-mountains-mexico

Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

March 7, 2020

Surprising Lidar Discoveries in the Yucatan

Archaeologists at Miami University and the Yucatan have carried out the first lidar study of the 80 mile stone highway (sacbe) that connected the Maya sites of Coba and Yaxuna in the Yucatan. The researchers believe that the road was commissioned by Lady K’awiil Ajaw, ruler of Coba, at the end of the 7th century. The lidar found 8,000 structures along the sacbe. They found that the earlier Carnegie Institute study theorizing the road was a straight one was wrong. The sacbe veered to connect other sites along the way.

So they have found many new towns and cities. It appears that Lady K’awiil Ajaw built the road to invade Yaxuna. She is depicted in stone carvings, beginning in 640 CE, trampling over bound captives. The large city of Chichen Itza was beginning to dominate the area, and Lady K’awiil Ajaw may have built the road to get a foothold in the area against Chichen Itza. She is documented as conducting wars of territorial expansion.

The team is excavating household clusters on the edge of Coba and Yaxuna along the Great White Road to find similarities in goods between the two sites.

The report is published in the Journal of Archaeological Science.

Miami.edu has the report here with a few photos;
https://news.miami.edu/stories/2020/02/modern-technology-reveals-old-secrets-about-the-great-white-maya-road.html?fbclid=IwAR02J59r-k1O-qwTdeEyBO5KBKeNfbtL-JpkhwIJwRL3ERUUrVs6_xFjnbY

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj

Surprising Lidar Discoveries in the Yucatan

March 7, 2020

Archaeologists at Miami University and the Yucatan have carried out the first lidar study of the 80 mile stone highway (sacbe) that connected the Maya sites of Coba and Yaxuna in the Yucatan. The researchers believe that the road was commissioned by Lady K’awiil Ajaw, ruler of Coba, at the end of the 7th century. The lidar found 8,000 structures along the sacbe. They found that the earlier Carnegie Institute study theorizing the road was a straight one was wrong. The sacbe veered to connect other sites along the way.

So they have found many new towns and cities. It appears that Lady K’awiil Ajaw built the road to invade Yaxuna. She is depicted in stone carvings, beginning in 640 CE, trampling over bound captives. The large city of Chichen Itza was beginning to dominate the area, and Lady K’awiil Ajaw may have built the road to get a foothold in the area against Chichen Itza. She is documented as conducting wars of territorial expansion.

The team is excavating household clusters on the edge of Coba and Yaxuna along the Great White Road to find similarities in goods between the two sites.

The report is published in the Journal of Archaeological Science.

Miami.edu has the report here with a few photos;
https://news.miami.edu/stories/2020/02/modern-technology-reveals-old-secrets-about-the-great-white-maya-road.html?fbclid=IwAR02J59r-k1O-qwTdeEyBO5KBKeNfbtL-JpkhwIJwRL3ERUUrVs6_xFjnbY

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj


February 22, 2020

Secret Passage Discovered In Maya City Of Uxmal

INAH has discovered a walled up passage in the Governor’s Palace at Uxmal dated at 570-770 CE. They found a Chaac mask and three staircases and two Maya arches that may correspond to the earliest architectural style at Uxmal. This passage shows us the Palace was divided into three segments linked by vaulted corridors. In the 10th century, conflict with Chichen Itza may have led to restricting access  to protect the Puuc dynasty by way of walking off this passage.

The report was printed in the Yucatan times and reprinted at archaeology news network with many photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/12/secret-passage-discovered-in-maya-city.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj

Secret Passage Discovered In Maya City Of Uxmal

February 22, 2020

INAH has discovered a walled up passage in the Governor’s Palace at Uxmal dated at 570-770 CE. They found a Chaac mask and three staircases and two Maya arches that may correspond to the earliest architectural style at Uxmal. This passage shows us the Palace was divided into three segments linked by vaulted corridors. In the 10th century, conflict with Chichen Itza may have led to restricting access  to protect the Puuc dynasty by way of walking off this passage.


The report was printed in the Yucatan times and reprinted at archaeology news network with many photos;

https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/12/secret-passage-discovered-in-maya-city.html


Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog


Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj

February 17, 2020

New Research in the Post-Cahokia Era.

Archaeologists at Berkeley, Caliifornia State University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Northeastern University have researched the idea that the ancient Mississippian center of Cahokia was depopulated by floods, droughts, and resource exhaustion by the 1400’s. They found that the Illinois Confederation of tribes continued to build communities around maize farming, bison hunting, controlled burning, living on small farms and gardens.

The research team studied fecal stanols of human waste in the sediment under Horseshoe Lake, Cahokia’s main catchment area. The levels of the stanols can gauge changes in population. The evidence points to migrations, warfare and ecological changes throughout the 1500s and 1600s in the area.

The research is published in the journal American Antiquity; Ancient poop helps show climate change contributed to fall of Cahokia the area

More information: A.J. White et al, After Cahokia: Indigenous Repopulation and Depopulation of the Horseshoe Lake Watershed AD 1400–1900, American Antiquity (2020).  DOI: 10.1017/aaq.2019.103

Phys Org. has the report here
https://phys.org/news/2020-01-debunks-myth-cahokia-native-american.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

New Research in the Post-Cahokia Era.

February 17, 2020

Archaeologists at Berkeley, Caliifornia State University, University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Northeastern University have researched the idea that the ancient Mississippian center of Cahokia was depopulated by floods, droughts, and resource exhaustion by the 1400’s. They found that the Illinois Confederation of tribes continued to build communities around maize farming, bison hunting, controlled burning, living on small farms and gardens.

The research team studied fecal stanols of human waste in the sediment under Horseshoe Lake, Cahokia’s main catchment area. The levels of the stanols can gauge changes in population. The evidence points to migrations, warfare and ecological changes throughout the 1500s and 1600s in the area.

The research is published in the journal American Antiquity; Ancient poop helps show climate change contributed to fall of Cahokia the area

More information: A.J. White et al, After Cahokia: Indigenous Repopulation and Depopulation of the Horseshoe Lake Watershed AD 1400–1900, American Antiquity (2020). DOI: 10.1017/aaq.2019.103

Phys Org. has the report here
https://phys.org/news/2020-01-debunks-myth-cahokia-native-american.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

image

February 11, 2020

Aztec Sweat Bath Uncovered in Mexico City

INAH has uncovered an Aztec sweat bath (tamazcals) in the La Merced neighborhood of Mexico City. They were built for medicinal purposes, spiritual rituals and for women to giver birth. A  house for the Aztec elite and Spanish tannery were also uncovered at the site. Mexica. Aztec style red motifs are on the walls of the house.

The sweat bath is fairly intact with a bathtub and a bench build into the wall
INAH says “An Aztec record says that a Mexica noblewoman named Quetzalmoyahuatzin regularly bathed in a temazcal before giving birth. Now that a sweat lodge like the one described in this record has actually been discovered, that written document is largely verified as fact.”
Research will continue at the site.

BBC News and Archaeology-World have the reports here with many photos;

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-51205284

https://www.archaeology-world.com/native-american-14th-century-sweat-lodge-discovered-in-mexico-city/


Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

Aztec Sweat Bath Uncovered in Mexico City

February 11, 2020

INAH has uncovered an Aztec sweat bath (tamazcals) in the La Merced neighborhood of Mexico City. They were built for medicinal purposes, spiritual rituals and for women to giver birth. A  house for the Aztec elite and Spanish tannery were also uncovered at the site. Mexica. Aztec style red motifs are on the walls of the house.

The sweat bath is fairly intact with a bathtub and a bench build into the wall
INAH says “An Aztec record says that a Mexica noblewoman named Quetzalmoyahuatzin regularly bathed in a temazcal before giving birth. Now that a sweat lodge like the one described in this record has actually been discovered, that written document is largely verified as fact.” Research will continue at the site.


BBC News and Archaeology-World have the reports here with many photos;

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-51205284


https://www.archaeology-world.com/native-american-14th-century-sweat-lodge-discovered-in-mexico-city/


Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

January 22, 2020

The Largest pre-Hispanic House Inside Present Day Mexico City Uncovered

INAH is uncovering the largest Pre-Hispanic house ever found inside present day Mexico City. It was discovered by maintenance workers. The 20ft by 26ft size of the foundation confirms it to be the largest pre-Hispanic house ever unearthed. The find is in the Azcatpotzalco neighborhood. This was the capital of the Tepanec dominion before the Aztecs took it over. INAH will be working in this area for some time. Stone walls have been found on the perimeter of the house.

The first phase of construction on the structure was between 1350-1519. There is a second phase whose dates are still undetermined. There are remains of residential structures also being uncovered nearby. The materials being used was of high quality, so elites lived here. There is some possibility that the residents built chinampas (floating gardens) in the space.

Express (UK) has the report here;
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1228507/aztec-history-archaeology-news-hispanic-mexico-city-south-america-latest

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

The Largest Pre-Hispanic House Inside Present Day Mexico City Uncovered

January 22, 2020

INAH is uncovering the largest Pre-Hispanic house ever found inside present day Mexico City. It was discovered by maintenance workers. The 20ft by 26ft size of the foundation confirms it to be the largest pre-Hispanic house ever unearthed. The find is in the Azcatpotzalco neighborhood. This was the capital of the Tepanec dominion before the Aztecs took it over. INAH will be working in this area for some time. Stone walls have been found on the perimeter of the house.

The first phase of construction on the structure was between 1350-1519. There is a second phase whose dates are still undetermined. There are remains of residential structures also being uncovered nearby. The materials being used was of high quality, so elites lived here. There is some possibility that the residents built chinampas (floating gardens) in the space.

Express (UK) has the report here;
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1228507/aztec-history-archaeology-news-hispanic-mexico-city-south-america-latest

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

(Scroll Down to The Aztec World)

December 30, 2019

A Vast Palace Structure Uncovered at the Maya site of Kaluba in the Yucatan

INAH has unearthed a vast Maya palace at the site of Kaluba, in the Yucatan. There are six rooms in the structure. It is part of a larger complex that also includes two residential rooms, an altar and a large round oven. Archaeologists have also uncovered remains from a burial site, and hope forensic analysis of the bones could provide more clues about Kulubá’s Mayan inhabitants.

The palace was in use from 600-900 CE, and then again from 850-1050 CE. The structures uncovered are just part of the vast complex yet to be uncovered.

INAH is considering bringing back some of the forest cover to protect the site from the elements.

The Guardian has the report here with photos and a video;
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/27/archaeologists-discover-remains-of-vast-mayan-palace

A Vast Palace Structure Uncovered at the Maya site of Kaluba in the Yucatan

December 30, 2019

INAH has unearthed a vast Maya palace at the site of Kaluba, in the Yucatan. There are six rooms in the structure. It is part of a larger complex that also includes two residential rooms, an altar and a large round oven. Archaeologists have also uncovered remains from a burial site, and hope forensic analysis of the bones could provide more clues about Kulubá’s Mayan inhabitants.

The palace was in use from 600-900 CE, and then again from 850-1050 CE. The structures uncovered are just part of the vast complex yet to be uncovered.

INAH is considering bringing back some of the forest cover to protect the site from the elements.

The Guardian has the report here with photos and a video;
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2019/dec/27/archaeologists-discover-remains-of-vast-mayan-palace

December 24, 2019

A Massive Pyramidal Structure Uncovered in Peru

A massive pyramidal structure has been uncovered at the Sechin Archaeological Project dating back to 3000 BCE. The archaeologists dug deep and found a series of steps that may have served as the seat of government of the ancient Sechin culture. They also found two skulls of an adult and child and a dismembered skeleton. There is an adobe wall at the top of the steps with the ancient fingerprints of the builders made when they put their fingers into the wet clay of the bricks.

Ancient Origins has th3e story with photos here;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/peruvian-pyramid-0012915

Mike Ruggeri’s Oldest Andean Cultures
https://mikeruggerisoldestandeancultures.home.blog

A Massive Pyramidal Structure Uncovered in Peru

December 24, 2019

A massive pyramidal structure has been uncovered at the Sechin Archaeological Project dating back to 3000 BCE. The archaeologists dug deep and found a series of steps that may have served as the seat of government of the ancient Sechin culture. They also found two skulls of an adult and child and a dismembered skeleton. There is an adobe wall at the top of the steps with the ancient fingerprints of the builders made when they put their fingers into the wet clay of the bricks.

Ancient Origins has th3e story with photos here;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/peruvian-pyramid-0012915

Mike Ruggeri’s Oldest Andean Cultures
https://mikeruggerisoldestandeancultures.home.blog

December 15, 2019

Human Bones at the Maya Site of Uxul Researched

Maya archaeologists found human bones in a water reservoir in the Maya city of Uxul in 2013.  They were killed and dismembered at 600 CE. UNAM has carried out a strontium isotope analysis. Some of the dead came from 95 miles away in Guatemala. Some were locals of high status with jade and engravings on their teeth. Most of the bones had cuts and injuries done by stone blades. The victims were beheaded and dismembered before being thrown into the reservoir. The body parts were widely scattered to destroy the physical unity of the individuals.

This kind of ritual was carried out on prisoners of war to display the power of the victor.

Phys.org has the report here.
https://phys.org/news/2019-12-isotope-analysis-mayan-prisoners-war.html?fbclid=IwAR1dcJWx3C6-scDgTXBWKRGeK3kzLBajcB-EAGf4-3FrKji-GzNIYzxWuC0

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

Human Bones at the Maya Site of Uxul Researched

December 15, 2019

Maya archaeologists found human bones in a water reservoir in the Maya city of Uxul in 2013. They were killed and dismembered at 600 CE. UNAM has carried out a strontium isotope analysis. Some of the dead came from 95 miles away in Guatemala. Some were locals of high status with jade and engravings on their teeth. Most of the bones had cuts and injuries done by stone blades. The victims were beheaded and dismembered before being thrown into the reservoir. The body parts were widely scattered to destroy the physical unity of the individuals.

This kind of ritual was carried out on prisoners of war to display the power of the victor.

Phys.org has the report here.
https://phys.org/news/2019-12-isotope-analysis-mayan-prisoners-war.html?fbclid=IwAR1dcJWx3C6-scDgTXBWKRGeK3kzLBajcB-EAGf4-3FrKji-GzNIYzxWuC0

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog


December 3, 2019

3000 Year Old Water Temple uncovered in Peru

A 3,000-year-old ‘water cult’ temple used for fertility rituals has been discovered in Peru in the Lambayeque region by a team of Peruvian archaeologists led by the famed Walter Alva. The tempo includes large blocks and a central staircase. It is located in the springs of the Zana valley and has holes similar to other water cult sites.

Huge walls surround the temple.

There are 21 tombs there dating to 1500 BCE-292 CE. Ceramics and metal object including knives. The tombs were re-used by the Inca in a later era.

The temple’s age is in the formative period predates major hydraulic works. It is located between rivers and there are small wells shows that this site is one where water is shown to be of great importance in the Formative period. The temple was abandoned by 250 BCE. After the Chimu culture used it as a burial place around 1300 CE.

20 of the burials were from the Chimu era. There was one Formative era burial buried east to west and with a ceramic bottle with two spouts and a bridge handle that was a Formative era style

It was built in three stages; 1500-800 BCE the foundations were built. 800 BCE-400 BCE the temple was built with Chavin influences. 400-100 BCE circular columns used to hold up the roof.

The reports are found in the Daily Mail and Live Science with lots of photos in each report;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7685227/Archaeologists-3-000-year-old-megalithic-temple-Peru.html

https://www.livescience.com/ancient-megalithic-temple-discovered-peru.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

3000 Year Old Water Temple Uncovered in Peru

December 3, 2019

A 3,000-year-old ‘water cult’ temple used for fertility rituals has been discovered in Peru in the Lambayeque region by a team of Peruvian archaeologists led by the famed Walter Alva. The tempo includes large blocks and a central staircase. It is located in the springs of the Zana valley and has holes similar to other water cult sites.

Huge walls surround the temple.

There are 21 tombs there dating to 1500 BCE-292 CE. Ceramics and metal object including knives. The tombs were re-used by the Inca in a later era.

The temple’s age is in the formative period predates major hydraulic works. It is located between rivers and there are small wells shows that this site is one where water is shown to be of great importance in the Formative period. The temple was abandoned by 250 BCE. After the Chimu culture used it as a burial place around 1300 CE.

20 of the burials were from the Chimu era. There was one Formative era burial buried east to west and with a ceramic bottle with two spouts and a bridge handle that was a Formative era style

It was built in three stages; 1500-800 BCE the foundations were built. 800 BCE-400 BCE the temple was built with Chavin influences. 400-100 BCE circular columns used to hold up the roof.

The reports are found in the Daily Mail and Live Science with lots of photos in each report;


https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7685227/Archaeologists-3-000-year-old-megalithic-temple-Peru.html

https://www.livescience.com/ancient-megalithic-temple-discovered-peru.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

November 17, 2019

143 New Nazca Geoglyphs Found

Japanese archaeologists have found 143 new Nazca geoglyphs dated at 300-100 BCE, some so large, they can only be seen from the air. They have been working on this since 2004. The geoglyphs were created by removing the black stones of the top soil to expose the white sand below. The team used high resolution satellite images along with fieldwork. The oldest geoglyphs are from 16 feet to 165 feet. The newer ones are 300 feet on average.

The larger ones are often animals and are placed at ritual sites it is thought. Various pottery were destroyed in the ritual. The smaller ones are on paths that could have been way posts for travelers to got toward the larger geoglyphs, for ritual activity.

IBM developed an AI device running a  geospatial analytics system on the IBM Watson Machine Learning Accelerator (WMLA), which sifted through huge volumes of drone and satellite imagery, to see if it could spot any hidden markings bearing a relation to the Nazca lines. This machinery will be in use into the future.

The Yamagata University website has info here;
https://www.yamagata-u.ac.jp/en/information/info/20191115_01

And Science Alert has the report here, with photos and a video;
https://www.sciencealert.com/over-140-mysterious-geoglyphs-discovered-within-the-ancient-nazca-lines

And more photos at The Daily Mail;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7702279/Researchers-uncover-143-previously-hidden-unknown-figures-drawn-desert-soil-Peru.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Nazca Era Peru
http://mikeruggerisnazcaera.tumblr.com

143 New Nazca Geoglyphs Found

November 17, 2019

Japanese archaeologists have found 143 new Nazca geoglyphs dated at 300-100 BCE, some so large, they can only be seen from the air. They have been working on this since 2004. The geoglyphs were created by removing the black stones of the top soil to expose the white sand below. The team used high resolution satellite images along with fieldwork. The oldest geoglyphs are from 16 feet to 165 feet. The newer ones are 300 feet on average.

The larger ones are often animals and are placed at ritual sites it is thought. Various pottery were destroyed in the ritual. The smaller ones are on paths that could have been way posts for travelers to got toward the larger geoglyphs, for ritual activity.

IBM developed an AI device running a geospatial analytics system on the IBM Watson Machine Learning Accelerator (WMLA), which sifted through huge volumes of drone and satellite imagery, to see if it could spot any hidden markings bearing a relation to the Nazca lines. This machinery will be in use into the future.

The Yamagata University website has info here;
https://www.yamagata-u.ac.jp/en/information/info/20191115_01

And Science Alert has the report here, with photos and a video;
https://www.sciencealert.com/over-140-mysterious-geoglyphs-discovered-within-the-ancient-nazca-lines

And more photos at The Daily Mail;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7702279/Researchers-uncover-143-previously-hidden-unknown-figures-drawn-desert-soil-Peru.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Nazca Era Peru
http://mikeruggerisnazcaera.tumblr.com

November 17, 2019

Children Buried with Human Skull Helmets Uncovered in Ecuador

Archaeologists in Ecuador have found two babies buried with helmets made from the skulls of other children. They are dated to 100 BCE. They were part of the Guangala culture. The same grave complex uncovered 11 individuals buried with shells and stone ancestor figurines. This may have been an attempt to protect the unsocialized very young children’s souls, and the stoned ancestor figurines may also have been protective devices. Further analysis of the skulls are being carried out to find out more about these individuals. Anemia has been detected in all of the skulls.

Forbes has the report here;
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kristinakillgrove/2019/11/13/babies-in-ancient-ecuador-were-buried-with-human-skull-helmets/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Children Buried with Human Skull Helmets Uncovered in Ecuador

November 17, 2019

Archaeologists in Ecuador have found two babies buried with helmets made from the skulls of other children. They are dated to 100 BCE. They were part of the Guangala culture. The same grave complex uncovered 11 individuals buried with shells and stone ancestor figurines. This may have been an attempt to protect the unsocialized very young children’s souls, and the stoned ancestor figurines may also have been protective devices. Further analysis of the skulls are being carried out to find out more about these individuals. Anemia has been detected in all of the skulls.

Forbes has the report here;
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kristinakillgrove/2019/11/13/babies-in-ancient-ecuador-were-buried-with-human-skull-helmets/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

image

November 13, 2019

LIDAR Expands Our Understanding of an Ancient Peruvian Site near Machu Picchu that is Larger and Older than Machu Picchu

Archaeologists have expanded our knowledge of an Inca site in the area of Machu Picchu that is older than that site. They enhanced our view of the site using LIDAR. The site is at 13,000 feet, 5000 feet higher than Machu Picchu. The site was known to archaeologists investigating on the ground, but LIDAR allowed researchers to see never before known features. LIDAR allowed researchers to see Inca terracing and circular structures that began in the  pre-Inca era that the Inca expanded upon, and the site is larger than Machu Picchu.

Express UK has the story here with many photos and a video;
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1202716/ancient-history-archaeology-discovery-south-america-Inca-ancient-civilisation-Peru-machu-p

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
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Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
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LIDAR Expands Our Understanding of an Ancient Peruvian Site near Machu Picchu that is Larger and Older than Machu Picchu

November 13, 2019

Archaeologists have expanded our knowledge of an Inca site in the area of Machu Picchu that is older than that site. They enhanced our view of the site using LIDAR. The site is at 13,000 feet, 5000 feet higher than Machu Picchu. The site was known to archaeologists investigating on the ground, but LIDAR allowed researchers to see never before known features. LIDAR allowed researchers to see Inca terracing and circular structures that began in the pre-Inca era that the Inca expanded upon, and the site is larger than Machu Picchu.

Express UK has the story here with many photos and a video;
https://www.express.co.uk/news/world/1202716/ancient-history-archaeology-discovery-south-america-Inca-ancient-civilisation-Peru-machu-p

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
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Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

November 11, 2019

Possbile 15,000 BCE Pre-Clovis Site Uncovered in Mexico

Workers at a location in Tultepec, north of Mexico City, found a cache of mammoth bones and notified INAH. INAH have worked for 10 months at the site and have found hundreds of mammoth bones, and realized this was a pre-historic hunting site. They found two man made traps where the mammoths were driven to their deaths by ancient hunters. The pit dates to 15,000 BCE, thus making this discovery the earliest close to proven Pre-Clovis site in the Americas.

(My note: There are sites claiming to be older in the Americas, but no human-animal interaction that could lend credence to the dates. And these sites rely on stone tools and stratigraphy analysis for their proposed dates. At this time, only Monte Verde, Chile and Paisley Cave, Oregon have proven Human DNA, and/or other human made materials along with tools at the sites, that are proven dated to 13,500 BCE. This site shows humans interacting with animals at the proposed date of 15,000 BCE).

INAH found 824 mammoth bones, eight skulls, five jaws, 179 ribs. These belonged to 14 mammoths. Camel and horse bones were found here as well. Groups of hunters numbering 20-30 steered one mammoth at a time into the pit, possible with torches and branches. The mammoths would be killed once in the traps. There are signs of butchering, and one bone looks to having been used as a polishing tool. The tongues of the mammoths were consumed as food.

Only right shoulder bones were found. Perhaps the left shoulder bones were used in ritual. One mammoth was laid out in a symbolic formation.

INAH will be looking for additional traps in the area.

The 15,000 BCE date has to be reviewed and published in a peer reviewed journal.

Smithsonian Magazine has the report here;

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/found-mexico-two-traps-where-woolly-mammoths-were-driven-their-deaths-180973522/

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
http://preclovisworld.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis News on Tumblr
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Possible 15,000 BCE Pre-Clovis Site Uncovered in Mexico

November 11, 2019

Workers at a location in Tultepec, north of Mexico City, found a cache of mammoth bones and notified INAH. INAH have worked for 10 months at the site and have found hundreds of mammoth bones, and realized this was a pre-historic hunting site. They found two man made traps where the mammoths were driven to their deaths by ancient hunters. The pit dates to 15,000 BCE, thus making this discovery the earliest close to proven Pre-Clovis site in the Americas.


(My note: There are sites claiming to be older in the Americas, but no human-animal interaction that could lend credence to the dates. And these sites rely on stone tools and stratigraphy analysis for their proposed dates. At this time, only Monte Verde, Chile and Paisley Cave, Oregon have proven Human DNA, and/or other human made materials along with tools at the sites, that are proven dated to 13,500 BCE. This site shows humans interacting with animals at the proposed date of 15,000 BCE).

INAH found 824 mammoth bones, eight skulls, five jaws, 179 ribs. These belonged to 14 mammoths. Camel and horse bones were found here as well. Groups of hunters numbering 20-30 steered one mammoth at a time into the pit, possible with torches and branches. The mammoths would be killed once in the traps. There are signs of butchering, and one bone looks to having been used as a polishing tool. The tongues of the mammoths were consumed as food.

Only right shoulder bones were found. Perhaps the left shoulder bones were used in ritual. One mammoth was laid out in a symbolic formation.

INAH will be looking for additional traps in the area.

The 15,000 BCE date has to be reviewed and published in a peer reviewed journal.

Smithsonian Magazine has the report here;

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/found-mexico-two-traps-where-woolly-mammoths-were-driven-their-deaths-180973522/

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
http://preclovisworld.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerispreclovisnews.tumblr.com

November 6, 2019

Large Mississippian Era Settlements off of the Florida Coast found by LIDAR.

Archaeologists, using LIDAR technology, have uncovered a settlement dating to 900-1200 CE on Raleigh Island off the coast of northern Florida. They found 35 residential areas enclosed by edges of oyster shells. They found the inhabitants were making beads from mollusk shells as an important trade item. Past investigations of this area had been stymied by the dense foliage in the area. The shell borders are up to 12 feet high. Archaeologists have now embarked on 10 test digs at the sites. They have uncovered the tools that were used on the bead production.

The tribe that constructed these settlements were probably from the Tocobaga tribe who lived on the west coast of Florida from 900-1500 CE.

The settlement found on Raleigh Island is ‘unprecedented in its architecture, its scale of bead production, and its place in regional geopolitics,’

The beads produced on the island would have been exported to chiefdoms across much of the east and mid-west during the Mississippian era. They were worn as prestige items among the Mississippian elite.

Reports of this find are at Ancient Origins, Ars Technica and the Smithsonian;

https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/settlement-florida-0012819

https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/11/a-drone-helped-archaeologists-discover-a-lost-florida-island-settlement/

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/ancient-bead-making-community-emerges-coast-florida-180973488/

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

Large Mississippian Era Settlements off of the Florida Coast found by LIDAR.

November 6, 2019

Archaeologists, using LIDAR technology, have uncovered a settlement dating to 900-1200 CE on Raleigh Island off the coast of northern Florida. They found 35 residential areas enclosed by edges of oyster shells. They found the inhabitants were making beads from mollusk shells as an important trade item. Past investigations of this area had been stymied by the dense foliage in the area. The shell borders are up to 12 feet high. Archaeologists have now embarked on 10 test digs at the sites. They have uncovered the tools that were used on the bead production.

The tribe that constructed these settlements were probably from the Tocobaga tribe who lived on the west coast of Florida from 900-1500 CE.

The settlement found on Raleigh Island is ‘unprecedented in its architecture, its scale of bead production, and its place in regional geopolitics,’

The beads produced on the island would have been exported to chiefdoms across much of the east and mid-west during the Mississippian era. They were worn as prestige items among the Mississippian elite.

Reports of this find are at Ancient Origins, Ars Technical’s and the Smithsonian;

https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/settlement-florida-0012819

https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/11/a-drone-helped-archaeologists-discover-a-lost-florida-island-settlement/

https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/ancient-bead-making-community-emerges-coast-florida-180973488/

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

INAH Finds Mexica Symbols on an Ancient Dike in Ecatepec, Mexico

October 27, 2019

INAH has found 11 Mexica symbols in a tunnel in Ecatepec, North of Mexico City. Petroglyphs, stucco reliefs, a war shield, a bird of prey were among the symbols found. A Teocalli symbol dedicated to Tlaloc the rain god was on a central stone.

Moctezuma I built the dikes in the 15th century to control the flow of water into Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital.

Indigenous folks from Ecatepec and Chiconautla worked on these dikes. Hernan Cortez destroyed the dikes and re-built them. The symbols have been removed for protection from further environmental damage and put in the Ecatepec community center. Replicas will be placed back on the walls of the tunnel.

Ancient Origins has the report here;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/pre-hispanic-symbols-0012776

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Aztec and Toltec World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1ygAdbd

October 27, 2019

INAH Finds Mexica Symbols on an Ancient Dike in Ecatepec, Mexico

INAH has found 11 Mexica symbols in a tunnel in Ecatepec, North of Mexico City.  Petroglyphs, stucco reliefs, a war shield, a bird of prey were among the symbols found.  A Teocalli symbol dedicated to Tlaloc the rain god was on a central stone.

Moctezuma I built the dikes in the 15th century to control the flow of water into Tenochtitlan, the Aztec capital.

Indigenous folks from Ecatepec and Chiconautla worked on these dikes. Hernan Cortez destroyed the dikes and re-built them. The symbols have been removed for protection from further environmental damage and put in the Ecatepec community center. Replicas will be placed back on the walls of the tunnel.

Ancient Origins has the report here;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/pre-hispanic-symbols-0012776

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Aztec and Toltec World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1ygAdbd

October 22, 2019

Pre-Columbian Lead Pollution at Kincaid Mounds

Researchers at the site of Kincaid Mounds and at the Avery Lake site (1150-1450 CE) found that the inhabitants of those site are responsible for 1.5 metric tons of lead pollution deposited in Avery Lake near the Ohio River. The lead came from galena deposits in southeastern and central Missouri and the upper Mississippi Valley. Galena is a lead sulfite mineral that is silvery and sparkly. It was ground and used to paint objects, buildings and personal adornments. Galena powder was blown into the lake or washed into the lake. The research shows that the galena trade was very large and that most of the pollution came from galena traded from other regions

Physical.org has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2019-10-pollution-native-americans-attributed-galena.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

Pre-Columbian Lead Pollution at Kincaid Mounds

October 22, 2019

Researchers at the site of Kincaid Mounds and at the Avery Lake site (1150-1450 CE) found that the inhabitants of those site are responsible for 1.5 metric tons of lead pollution deposited in Avery Lake near the Ohio River. The lead came from galena deposits in southeastern and central Missouri and the upper Mississippi Valley. Galena is a lead sulfite mineral that is silvery and sparkly. It was ground and used to paint objects, buildings and personal adornments. Galena powder was blown into the lake or washed into the lake. The research shows that the galena trade was very large and that most of the pollution came from galena traded from other regions

Physical.org has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2019-10-pollution-native-americans-attributed-galena.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

October 11, 2019

Massive Maya Field Projects to Survive Floods and Droughts Discovered

The Maya of Belize acted to limit population and environmental pressures by creating massive agricultural features, burn events and farming to increase atmospheric CO2 and methane. Researchers found that the Bird of Paradise wet fieled complex was five times larger than thought. Using Lidar to map the ground, the researchers saw the huge fields and canals that the Maya built to ward off the effects of rising sea levels and drought.

The Maya converted forests to wetland field complexes and canals to manage water quality and quantity.

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Archaeology News Network has the report here;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/10/ancient-maya-canals-and-fields-show.html#3xJZDf58t4JEsf1R.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
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Massive Maya Field Projects to Survive Floods and Droughts Discovered

October 11, 2019

The Maya of Belize acted to limit population and environmental pressures by creating massive agricultural features, burn events and farming to increase atmospheric CO2 and methane. Researchers found that the Bird of Paradise wet fieled complex was five times larger than thought. Using Lidar to map the ground, the researchers saw the huge fields and canals that the Maya built to ward off the effects of rising sea levels and drought.

The Maya converted forests to wetland field complexes and canals to manage water quality and quantity.

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Archaeology News Network has the report here;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/10/ancient-maya-canals-and-fields-show.html#3xJZDf58t4JEsf1R.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

September 15, 2019

Oldest Trade between the Great Lakes and the Ancient Georgia Coast Uncovered

Archaeologists digging at St. Catherine’s Island off of the coast of Georgia have uncovered a copper object, and a 4000 year old grave site encircled by a massive ring of seashells. The burial practices and the copper object prove long distance trade more than 2000 years ago between the Great Lakes and the ancient Georgia coast. The authors claim this is the first clear evidence of this kind of trade and and exchange of religious ideas in eastern North America dating back to 2000 BCE.

Copper objects and other artifacts have been found at Poverty point in Louisiana dated to 1700 BCE. But those copper objects were obtained from only several hundred miles away.

The McQueen shell ring of Georgia is 70 meters across surrounding an earthen plaza. The earliest shell rings along the Atlantic and Gulf Coast date back to 3,800 BCE.

The new information pushes the known trade contacts between the upper Great Lakes and the Southeast coast back 2000 years in time.

Excavations in the center of the shell ring uncovered a burial pit filled with more than 80,000 ash-encrusted bone and tooth fragments, a copper band and remnants of stone tools. The copper tools have been analyzed and they are from Lake Superior. The copper band is dated at 3800-4300 years ago. The burial accompanied by copper bands and cremated individuals within resemble burials from the Great Lakes.

The Georgia site was probably a place for hosting hunter-gatherers on a seasonal basis. Fish, clams, oysters hickory and acorn nuts were founding the enclosure.

American Antiquity published the research.

Science News has the report
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/island-grave-site-hints-far-flung-ties-among-ancient-americans

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Southwest/Moundbuilders News on Word Press
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

Oldest Trade between the Great Lakes and the Ancient Georgia Coast Uncovered

September 15, 2019

Archaeologists digging at St. Catherine’s Island off of the coast of Georgia have uncovered a copper object, and a 4000 year old grave site encircled by a massive ring of seashells. The burial practices and the copper object prove long distance trade more than 2000 years ago between the Great Lakes and the ancient Georgia coast. The authors claim this is the first clear evidence of this kind of trade and and exchange of religious ideas in eastern North America dating back to 2000 BCE.

Copper objects and other artifacts have been found at Poverty point in Louisiana dated to 1700 BCE. But those copper objects were obtained from only several hundred miles away.

The McQueen shell ring of Georgia is 70 meters across surrounding an earthen plaza. The earliest shell rings along the Atlantic and Gulf Coast date back to 3,800 BCE.

The new information pushes the known trade contacts between the upper Great Lakes and the Southeast coast back 2000 years in time.

Excavations in the center of the shell ring uncovered a burial pit filled with more than 80,000 ash-encrusted bone and tooth fragments, a copper band and remnants of stone tools. The copper tools have been analyzed and they are from Lake Superior. The copper band is dated at 3800-4300 years ago. The burial accompanied by copper bands and cremated individuals within resemble burials from the Great Lakes.

The Georgia site was probably a place for hosting hunter-gatherers on a seasonal basis. Fish, clams, oysters hickory and acorn nuts were founding the enclosure.

American Antiquity published the research.

Science News has the report
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/island-grave-site-hints-far-flung-ties-among-ancient-americans

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Southwest/Moundbuilders News on Word Press
https://mikeruggerismoundbuildersancientsouthwest.news.blog

September 14, 2019

Ancient Chimu Striking Elite Burial

Archaeologists at the site of Pampa la Cruz in Peru have uncovered an elite Chimu individual buried with clothes made of exotic bird feathers over his head and body. A poncho like tabard was made of red and yellow feathers, and a headdress made of blue, white, green, black, and yellow feathers. The individual was buried in a squatting position similar to one found earlier with the same exotic feathers.

Andina has the report here with many photos;
https://andina.pe/ingles/noticia-peru-archaeologists-find-exotic-feather-headdress-and-tabard-in-pampa-cruz-765073.aspx

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Sican/Chimu Era Cultures
https://mikeruggerissicanchimueracultures.home.blog

Ancient Chimu Striking Elite Burial

September 14, 2019

Archaeologists at the site of Pampa la Cruz in Peru have uncovered an elite Chimu individual buried with clothes made of exotic bird feathers over his head and body. A poncho like tabard was made of red and yellow feathers, and a headdress made of blue, white, green, black, and yellow feathers. The individual was buried in a squatting position similar to one found earlier with the same exotic feathers.

Andina has the report here with many photos;
https://andina.pe/ingles/noticia-peru-archaeologists-find-exotic-feather-headdress-and-tabard-in-pampa-cruz-765073.aspx

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Sican/Chimu Era Cultures
https://mikeruggerissicanchimueracultures.home.blog

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September 6, 2019

Pre-Clovis, Idaho

Evidence of a Pre-Clovis site at Cooper’s Ferry Idaho has been uncovered. The dates for the evidence so far point to a 16,000 years ago settlement, Charcoal unearthed there point to a settlement date of 15,945-15,335 hearts ago. Some other bone and charcoal are dated at 14,075 and 15,195 years ago. Artifacts at the site still show up at 8000 years ago. So this site had a very long occupation. The site was probably occupied seasonally for hunting, gathering, fishing. The local Nez Perce tribe members know the site as Nipéhe.

The only way these settlers could have arrived is by foot or boat along the Pacific Coast at these dates and not across the Bering strait, which was ice covered at that time.

Animal bones and discarded stone tools, including bifaces (two-sided handaxes blades) sharp stone flakes, and fragments of two projectile points that are earlier in style than Clovis tools have been uncovered. The stemmed points are very similar to stemmed points on Hokkaido in Japan that date to 16,000-13,000 years ago. Other stone artifacts found also resemble the Hokkaido tradition.

The research is published in Science, 2019. DOI: 10.1126/science.aax9830 (About DOIs).

And Ars Technica has the synopsis here.
https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/08/16000-year-old-site-in-idaho-indicates-people-sailed-around-the-ice-sheet/

Although there has been no human DNA found yet, nor any evidence of more concrete human occupation like post holes, fabrics etc. The stone tools are at the same dated level as the animal bones found. And there is proof that the settlers dug hearths and pits in which the Pre-Clovis animal bones were found.

There will be debate about the stemmed points age in terms of development. Clovis points and stemmed points were in use simultaneously.

These additional facts are at Science magazine;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/08/first-people-americas-came-sea-ancient-tools-unearthed-idaho-river-suggest

(My addition; without human DNA proof and human artifacts found that are not just stone tools, the proof here is not as strong as Pre-Clovis proof at Monte Verde, Chile and Paisley Cave in Oregon, but the evidence is very close to absolute proof.)

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis Sites in the Americas
https://michaelruggerispreclovissites.home.blog

September 5, 2019

Update on Archaeologists Uncover Ancient Andean Massive Child Sacrifice

140 children and 200 Llamas were ritually sacrificed by the Chimu culture of the Ancient Andes, at the Huanchaquito-Las Llamas Site, dated to 1400 CE. Most of the children were between 5-14 years of age, and of both sexes. The site is a half mile from the huge Chimu site of Chan Chan. An earlier dig in 2011 uncovered an earlier mass child sacrifice of 42 children and 76 llamas. The dig continued at this site, and by 2016, the 140 child sacrifices were uncovered.

The children had red cinnabar on their faces, their chests were cut open to remove their hearts. A man and two women were sacrificed close by, by means of blunt force trauma. All were killed at a single event. The sacrificed were brought to the site from all over the Chimu empire. The cuts to the bodies indicate they were all killed by trained hands.

The sacrifice may have been an attempt to ward off the effects of El Nino.

Research on the victims will be ongoing at the site. There are other sacrifices of children and llamas in other areas. And this find may be just the tip of the iceberg according to the researchers.

National Geographic has the follow up report here;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2018/04/mass-child-human-animal-sacrifice-peru-chimu-science/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Sican/Chimu Era Cultures
https://mikeruggerissicanchimueracultures.home.blog

Update on Archaeologists Uncover Ancient Andean Massive Child Sacrifice

September 5, 2019

140 children and 200 Llamas were ritually sacrificed by the Chimu culture of the Ancient Andes, at the Huanchaquito-Las Llamas Site, dated to 1400 CE. Most of the children were between 5-14 years of age, and of both sexes. The site is a half mile from the huge Chimu site of Chan Chan. An earlier dig in 2011 uncovered an earlier mass child sacrifice of 42 children and 76 llamas. The dig continued at this site, and by 2016, the 140 child sacrifices were uncovered.

The children had red cinnabar on their faces, their chests were cut open to remove their hearts. A man and two women were sacrificed close by, by means of blunt force trauma. All were killed at a single event. The sacrificed were brought to the site from all over the Chimu empire. The cuts to the bodies indicate they were all killed by trained hands.

The sacrifice may have been an attempt to ward off the effects of El Nino.

Research on the victims will be ongoing at the site. There are other sacrifices of children and llamas in other areas. And this find may be just the tip of the iceberg according to the researchers.

National Geographic has the follow up report here;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/news/2018/04/mass-child-human-animal-sacrifice-peru-chimu-science/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

Mike Ruggeri’s Sican/Chimu Era Cultures
https://mikeruggerissicanchimueracultures.home.blog

September 2, 2019

New Research on Inca Trophy Heads

Chilean archaeologists have researched four severed skulls from the late Inca era (1476-1534) which were buried in isolation with trash and without their bodies, at the site of Iglesia Colorada, in northern Chile.  The skulls were modified with orifices in the cranium vault and defleshed mandibles. They look to have been mounted as trophy skulls as a ritualistic display of power over local subjects in their empire. The Inca mined copper in the area.

The skulls were found in 2003. Three of the skulls were females and one child. Five other skulls were found at the site. These may represent new ideological tools of control. The site was on the periphery of the Inca empire. Perhaps there was a rebellion there. The Inca may have been targeting weaker members, women and children, to preserve their male labor pool.

The findings are reported in Latin American Antiquity.

Science Alert has the report here;
https://www.sciencealert.com/the-inca-mounted-trophy-heads-in-gruesome-display-of-power-skull-discovery-reveals

The Daily Mail has good photos and illustrations of the research;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7398767/Inca-society-mounted-trophy-heads-enemies-displays-power.html

New Research on Inca Trophy Heads

September 2, 2019

Chilean archaeologists have researched four severed skulls from the late Inca era (1476-1534) which were buried in isolation with trash and without their bodies, at the site of Iglesia Colorada, in northern Chile. The skulls were modified with orifices in the cranium vault and defleshed mandibles. They look to have been mounted as trophy skulls as a ritualistic display of power over local subjects in their empire. The Inca mined copper in the area.

The skulls were found in 2003. Three of the skulls were females and one child. Five other skulls were found at the site. These may represent new ideological tools of control. The site was on the periphery of the Inca empire. Perhaps there was a rebellion there. The Inca may have been targeting weaker members, women and children, to preserve their male labor pool.

The findings are reported in Latin American Antiquity.

Science Alert has the report here;
https://www.sciencealert.com/the-inca-mounted-trophy-heads-in-gruesome-display-of-power-skull-discovery-reveals

The Daily Mail has good photos and illustrations of the research;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-7398767/Inca-society-mounted-trophy-heads-enemies-displays-power.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerisancientandean.news.blog

 

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August 25, 2019

1,800 BCE Mural Uncovered at the Site of Vichama in Peru (Caral Civilization Site)

Archaeologists have uncovered a mural depicting a toad wrapping its hands around a human face at the site of Vichama in Peru. Archaeologist Ruth Shady explains the toad is a symbol for rain, and the aura,l suggests it is a prayer for rain. The mural may announce the coming of rain. The mural dates to 1,800 BCE.

Last year, in the same structure, other wall carvings were found at the entry to a ceremonial hall. The bas relief mural depicts four human heads with their eyes-closed and two snakes passing between and around them. These two snakes have their heads pointing at the image of what DW describes as “a humanoid seed symbol that is digging into the soil. These also depict the asking for the coming of rain, since the snake carvings may representations of a rain bearing water deity.

Vichama is 68 miles from Lima. The site existed at 3000-1800 BCE. Excavations started there in 2007. Murals representing the high status of women at the siren have also been uncovered.

Vichama is a site connected to the Caral/Norte Chico civilization. The site of Caral dates back to 3,000 BCE

Ancient Origins has the richly detailed report here with photos;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/wall-carvings-0010573

Mike Ruggeri’s Oldest Andean Cultures
https://mikeruggerisoldestandeancultures.home.blog

1,800 BCE Mural Uncovered at the Site of Vichama in Peru (Caral Civilization Site)

August 25, 2019

1,800 BCE Mural Uncovered at the Site of Vichama in Peru (Caral Civilization Site)

Archaeologists have uncovered a mural depicting a toad wrapping its hands around a human face at the site of Vichama in Peru. Archaeologist Ruth Shady explains the toad is a symbol for rain, and the aura,l suggests it is a prayer for rain. The mural may announce the coming of rain. The mural dates to 1,800 BCE.

Last year, in the same structure, other wall carvings were found at the entry to a ceremonial hall. The bas relief mural depicts four human heads with their eyes-closed and two snakes passing between and around them. These two snakes have their heads pointing at the image of what DW describes as “a humanoid seed symbol that is digging into the soil. These also depict the asking for the coming of rain, since the snake carvings may representations of a rain bearing water deity.

Vichama is 68 miles from Lima. The site existed at 3000-1800 BCE. Excavations started there in 2007. Murals representing the high status of women at the siren have also been uncovered.

Vichama is a site connected to the Caral/Norte Chico civilization. The site of Caral dates back to 3,000 BCE

Ancient Origins has the richly detailed report here with photos;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/wall-carvings-0010573

Mike Ruggeri’s Oldest Andean Cultures
https://mikeruggerisoldestandeancultures.home.blog

August 21, 2019

INAH Uncovers Fortress Wall Built Around Uxmal

INAH has found a two mile long fortress wall surrounding the site of Uxmal in the Yucatan. It is now covered by thick jungle, but INAH is talking of restoration. More than half of Uxmal is still uncovered.

A drawing of the wall was printed in John Stephens’ “Incidents of Travel in Central America, Chiapas, and Yucatan”  in 1841. The wall was not searched for again till recently.

The wall was for defense and marked off the elite population from the rest. The elite lived inside the walls. The wall had 20 entry points and rainwater tanks. Some of it was built hastily as if to protect against imminent danger.

Maya settlements in Mayapán, Chichen Itza and Tulum were also walled in,

The Yucatan Expat Life has the report here;
https://yucatanexpatlife.com/fortress-wall-surrounding-ancient-mayan-city-of-uxmal-is-uncovered/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

August 21, 2019

INAH Uncovers a Fortress Wall Around Uxmal

INAH has found a two mile long fortress wall surrounding the site of Uxmal in the Yucatan. It is now covered by thick jungle, but INAH is talking of restoration. More than half of Uxmal is still uncovered.

A drawing of the wall was printed in John Stephens’ “Incidents of Travel in Central America, Chiapas, and Yucatan” in 1841. The wall was not searched for again till recently.

The wall was for defense and marked off the elite population from the rest. The elite lived inside the walls. The wall had 20 entry points and rainwater tanks. Some of it was built hastily as if to protect against imminent danger.

Maya settlements in Mayapán, Chichen Itza and Tulum were also walled in,

The Yucatan Expat Life has the report here;
https://yucatanexpatlife.com/fortress-wall-surrounding-ancient-mayan-city-of-uxmal-is-uncovered/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on WordPress
https://mikeruggerismaya.news.blog

August 13, 2019

New Research on the Dead Found in the Great Cenote at Chichen Itza

Tooth enamel from the over 200 sacrificial victims found in the great cenote at Chichen Itza show that they came from the area and all across Mexico. Immigrants were coming to the area from all across Mexico during Chichen Itza’s heyday. The city hosted a population of 50,000 in the Mesoamerican post-classic, after 900 CE. Half of the victims found in the cenote were children between 4-6 years of age.

The victims show evidence of flaying, impalement, skinning. Their bodies look to have been displayed before being thrown into the denote. Some were also displayed on skull racks.

Scientific methods on the tooth enamel of 40 of the victims was carried out. These show that some of the victims came from as far away as Honduras, Cholula and Tula in central Mexico, Veracruz, and from local areas. This proves that Chichen’s influence spread across all of Mesoamerica.

The American Journal of Physical Anthropology Magazine published the research.

Forbes.com has the news of the report, with the scientific analysis used by the researchers.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/carlymiller/2019/08/09/skulls-analyzed-from-the-mayan-sacred-cenote-show-that-human-sacrifices-were-sourced-from-far-and-wide-across-mexico-in-1000-ad/#30cea3f4e8b7

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News Magazine
http://bit.ly/1CeeXyu

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
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August 6, 2019

New Research on Maya Total Warfare

New research on the Maya carried out by the University of California, Berkeley, and the U.S. Geological Survey indicates that the Maya used scorched earth military campaigns, destroying everything in their path, including cropland, at the height of their Classic age. This goes against the idea that this was only a response by the Maya during their decline.

Researchers found an inch-thick layer of charcoal at the bottom of lake Laguna Ek’Naab in Guatemala, and the burning of the city Witzna. This took place at 690-700 CE. The event is recorded with the date May 21, 697 CE of a burning campaign recorded on a stone stela at the rival city of Naranjo. The proof of the fire by the new research coinciding with the written record is an amazing proof in the ancient Maya world. Seven meters of sediment cores under the lake matches the burning of Witzna’s monuments. Human activity at Witzna decreased dramatically after the event. The event coincides with more evidence of mass burials, fortified cities and large standing armies throughout the Maya world at the same time.

It appears that total warfare was not the cause of the Maya collapse, since total warfare was a constant across the Maya era.

Three other references to “burning” are mentioned in the same war statement, referencing the cities of Komkom, K’an Witznal, and K’inchil, location unknown. These cities may also have been decimated,

The researchers note that it is known that the conquest of Bahlam Jol/Witzna was set in motion by a queen of Naranjo, Lady 6 Sky, who was trying to reestablish her dynasty after the city-state had declined and lost all its possessions. She set her seven-year-old son, Kahk Tilew, on the throne and then began military campaigns to wipe out all the rival cities that had rebelled, Estrada-Belli said.

The research is published in the journal Nature Human Behaviour

The report is at EurekAlert;
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-08/uoc–mmw080519.php

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
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July 28, 2017


Unknown 5000 BCE South American Culture May Have Been Unearthed


Archaeologists at the Real Alto site in Ecuador found ceramic vessel shards dating to 4640-4460 BCE. This corresponds with the Valdivia period. The vessels are from the San Pedro complex, which differ in decoration and the application of the decorations. This may be from an unknown culture contemporaneous with Valdivia, which is on the Pacific coast of Ecuador. Further excavations will take place,

The research was published in the journal Antiquity.

Eurkalert has the report here with a photo;

https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-07/fefu-prt072419.php

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Peru (5000 BC-600 BC)
http://mikeruggerisancientperu.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Norte Chico (Peru) World Magazine
http://flip.it/YEMZZ

July 17, 2019

New Research on Ancient Chaco Canyon Population Viability

Researchers at Chaco Canyon have carried out a detailed analysis of the climate and hydrology of the Chaco area and have found that its soil could not support the farming necessary to feed large populations. Dryland farming is impossible there due to lack of rainfall. Flash floods were also a constant source of destruction. Chacoans could only have farmed 100 acres, and could not have grown enough corn for over 1000 people. Deer and rabbits and small game would have been cleared out completely with 2,300 people to feed.

Importing food to feed 2,300 people from outside of the canyon would have required porters to make 18,000 trips by foot annually. So either Chacoans would have had to do this, or perhaps the structures in Chaco were only inhabited at times of pilgrimages from outside the canyon.

There research is published in the Journal of Archaeological Science.

And Colorado.edu has a report here
https://www.colorado.edu/today/2019/07/10/food-may-have-been-scarce-chaco-canyon

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Southwest/Mound Builders News Magazine
http://bit.ly/16PP9jH

July 14, 2019

New Research on Maize and the Maya Collapse

Researchers studied the remains of 50 human burials at Cahal Pech, Belize. The burials ranged from 735 BCE-850 CE. In the earliest periods, elites and commoners had a diverse diet that included maize, wild plants, and animals. This food diversity helped insulate the population in a 300-100 BCE drought. Then at 750-900 CE, the need for intensive agriculture due to population expansion led to increasing reliance on maize.

The elites demanded increased maize production on the local population. Then another severe drought came from 750-900, and the over-reliance on maize gave the population less food flexibility, and the collapse happened.

The research is reported in Current Anthropology;
“The Role of Diet in Resilience and Vulnerability to Climate Change among Early Agricultural Communities in the Maya Lowlands”

Archaeology News Network has the report here;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/07/maize-centric-diet-may-have-contributed.html#PbKcEfQ8aysgE8Dp.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
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July 7, 2019

Mochica Elite Female Unearthed at Lambayeque, Peru

The body was found at the site of Huaca Santa Rosa de Pucala in Lambayeque. The body dates to 900-1000 CE. The body was in an adobe walled chamber with a roof held up by carob beams, and it contained 204 pots, metal objects, decorated face neck jars, and a male companion. It is in the Mochica style despite being past the time of the Moche. This is a surprising feature.

Archaeology News network has the short report here with good photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/06/mochica-elites-last-woman-unearthed-in.html#szuqk7B05vvydrES.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News Magazine
http://bit.ly/1KJvVt1

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
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June 25, 2019

INAH Continues to Study Aztec Skull Rack Skulls

INAH Is continuing to study the skulls uncovered from the Templo Mayor Aztec skull racks (tzompantli) in downtown Mexico City. They have found 180 complete skulls. Thee victims were defleshed after death and the decapitation technique was clean. They have found that 75% were men, mostly of warrior age, 20% women and 5% children. Often the skulls were decorated and looked like eerie masks. Isotopic analysis of the skulls shows they were born all over Mesoamerica, but spent lots of time in Tenochtitlan before their death. So they were not foreigners. They often spent time with the families of their captors before they were sacrificed. They do display differing dental and cranial modifications. So this will lead researchers to more precise studies of the backgrounds of the sacrificed. New DNA studies will tell us about the genetic diversity of the Mesoamerica population at the time.

Science Magazine has the copiously illustrated report here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/06/feeding-gods-hundreds-skulls-reveal-massive-scale-human-sacrifice-aztec-capital

Mike Ruggeri’s Aztlan World
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Mike Ruggeri’s Aztec and Toltec World Magazine
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June 17, 2019

Earliest Maya Entry into Teotihuacan Uncovered

INAH has revealed new research concerning the entry of the Maya into Teotihuacan, at a conference in Mexico City, headed by renowned University of Arizona Teotihuacan archaeologist Saburo Sugiyama. 2,400 remains of human skeletons, disjointed, and dismembered, were found at one end of Plaza 50 in the Plaza of the Columns at Teotihuacan. Most were adults, most had cuts and some had their bones carved as tools. Sharpened teeth with dental implants were found.Three skulls were cranially deformed. The dental and skull mutilations are in the Maya style.

A second offering may be the remains of a great celebration. 3,500 bones have been found there, mostly animal bones, and 10,000 ceramic sherds, probably smashed as part of a ritual. 68% were Teotihuacan bowls but many are of Maya design. The banquet was mainly rabbit and quail. Cassava and tobacco are present coming from distant lands.

Wall fragments with Maya style murals have also been found at Plaza 50. They were also ritually destroyed. 1000 of these fragments are being restored and scanned.

Artifacts in the northern mound recovered last summer contained marine elements and sacrificed animals.

95 obsidian objects including projectile points and prismatic blades made at Teotihuacan, and 50 greenstones and 50 marine objects included snails.

A golden eagle that had eaten a rabbit, a puma skull, rattlesnakes and the spider monkey not native to the central highlands were among the sacrificed animals.

Radicarbon dating have been divided into two periods. The first period was between 300-350 CE and a later period, when the Maya murals appear dated at 350-450 CE.

Sugiyama pointed out that 350 CE was the date that three Maya elite individuals were sacrificed at the Pyramid of the Moon. And the Maya murals are in line with the Teotihuacan entry into Tikal at 378 CE.

INAH has the report here (in Spanish) (click on the tiny camera icon for a slide show)

https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/8195-nuevos-hallazgos-en-teotihuacan-revelan-relacion-con-mayas-entre-350-y-450-d-c

Mike Ruggeri’s Teotihuacan
http://mikeruggeristeotihuacan.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Teotihuacan; City of the Gods Magazine
http://bit.ly/1z57bpL

May 31, 2019

Three Ancient Andean Short Reports

Restored Ceramics Shed Light on the Wari Civilization of Peru

45 restored ceramics found at the Wari site of Ayachcho in Peru reveal the Wari civilization is linked to the Nazca and Huarpa cultures. The ceramics show coastal animals and marine products similar to the designs on Nazca ceramics. The Wari often destroyed their ceramics as part of Wari rituals. The ceramics also show influence from the little known culture of the Huarpa

Archaeology News Network has the report here;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/05/recently-discovered-wari-ceramics.html#d6jxeSmXQBF5LQoC.97

Ancient Pachacamac Cemetery Uncovered in Peru

An ancient cemetery has been discovered at the site of Pachacamac in Peru. A cluster of burials in foetal positions mummified in plant materials, nets and textiles were uncovered in deep pits sunk  into the sand, with ceramics and other offerings, then covered in wood and rushwork roofs. The interred had fractures, bad backs and hips, TB, syphilis, serious bone breaks. The injuries had healed, so they were being cared for.

The later invading Incas carried out targeted attacks on the dead, removing their heads as an example of grave defilement.

Archaeology News Network has the report here.
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/04/1000-year-old-cemetery-unearthed-at.html#eJpjmgXFcFiCGOAw.97

Ancient Wari Beer Breweries Uncovered in Peru

Field Museum of Chicago archaeologists working at the Wari culture (350-1000 CE) site of Cerro Baul found a brewery and drinking vessels for the production and consumption of Chicha, a beer fermented from corn and pepper berries, that had to be drank swiftly before it went bad. Chicha was used at rituals to diplomatically unite communities in the Wari realm, and helped keep the peace.

They analyzed pieces of ceramic beer vessels, heated them to study the molecules, shooting a laser at a shard of a beer vessel to remove a tiny bit of material, and then heating that dust to the temperature of the surface of the sun to break down the molecules that make it up. This told them where there the clay came from and what the beer was made from. Pepper berries could survive droughts. The drinking vessels were tall and decorated to look like Wari gods and leaders.

When the Wari empire began to come apart, they set fire to their breweries and covered them with sand.

The Daily Mail has the report here with photos;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6936897/Archaeologists-earn-steady-supply-beer-kept-Wari-empires-society-afloat.html

May 25, 2019

Cooking Pot with Llamas Head and Many Ingredients Uncovered at a Moche Site in Peru

Archaeologists working at the Moche site of Wasi Huachuma, dating to 600-850 CE, found a cooking pot under a house floor which contained portions of llamas face, guinea pig, maize, common beans, squash, potato, and chili pepper were found, along with crabs, flathead mullet, and the plant coca. The pot looks like a dedicatory offering which tie together all of the geographic and environmental regions accessed by the Moche. The entirety of Moche culinary knowledge is found in the pot.

The research is published in the Cambridge Archaeological Journal

Forbes has the report here;
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kristinakillgrove/2019/05/24/archaeologist-finds-pot-full-of-llama-face-stew-under-a-house-in-ancient-peru/#16f43bfbdff1

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

May 24, 2019

Beautiful Jadeite Tool Uncovered at Ancient Maya Salt Works in Belize

LSU’s Heather McKillop has found a tool made of high quality translucent jadeite with a Honduras rosewood handle at the Maya salt processing site of Ek Way Nal in Belize, where there is a network of 110 ancient salt working sites. Sea level rise has buried artifacts from the salt works.The soggy mangrove soil preserved the artifact. The tool was used for scraping salt, cutting, scraping fish and meat.

Archaeology News Network has the report here, with a great photo of the beautiful tool;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/05/high-quality-jadeite-tool-discovered-in.html#UiuPjYemCujZj5aW.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News Magazine
http://bit.ly/1CeeXyu

image

May 21, 2019

The Oldest Human Footprint in the Americas Discovered

The oldest human footprint in the Americas has been discovered in Chile, dating to 15,600 years ago. It was discovered in 2010 at the Pilauco excavation site in Chile where scientists have been digging since 2007. It is in the region of Patagonia. Fossil bones and tools were alongside of it. Radiocarbon dates on organic plant life that was present at the footprint determined the age of the footprint. Based on features such as foot arch, the size of the print, and the width-ratio between the ball of the foot and the lack third segment, scientists were able to conclude the print came from a human male around 22 pounds (10kg) lighter than one of their print makers. Researchers had also found bones of animals near the site, including those of primitive elephants.

The print was  also likely buried fast by layers of soil after it was made, which allowed it to be preserved it to this day.

The print is only 60 miles away from the oldest site in the Americas, Monte Verde, which dates back to 14,600 years ago.

The footprint is now preserved in a glass box and is housed at the recently established Pleistocene Museum in the city of Osorno, Chile. The study was published online April 24 in the journal PLOS One.

LiveScience has the report here with photos;
https://www.livescience.com/65368-oldest-human-footprint-americas.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
http://preclovisworld.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1uAWdvk

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May 18, 2019

New DNA Test of a Blackfeet Clan Member Breaks New Ground.

Darrell “Dusty” Crawford, a member of the Blackfeet tribe, wanted to have his DNA tested, and it has been tested after his recent death. His ancestry shows DNA from the Pacific, and ancestors traveling to South America, then north. His DNA is in haplogroup B, which is of low frequency in Alaska and Canada, and originated in Arizona 17,000 years ago. His closest relatives are in Southeast Asia. The Blackfeet clans trace their clanship back to four females, one whose name was Ina. That name comes from a Polynesian mythical figure who rides a shark. His DNA was 83% Native American, 9.8% European, 5.3% East Asian (mostly Japanese and Southern Han Chinese), 2% South Asian (Sri Lankan Tamil, Punjabi, Gujarati Indian and Bengali) and .2% African (Mende in Sierra Leone and African Caribbean).

(My note; The story that the First Americans came across after the Beringia opening has been touted as the only route the First Americans could have taken to arrive here. In all of the research I have compiled, I believe there is a Pacific crossing as well. See my Pre-Clovis news page below. This DNA study also points in that direction).

The report is in USA Today
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2019/05/06/blackfeet-man-dna-deemed-oldest-americas-cri-genetics/1121352001/

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
http://preclovisworld.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1uAWdvk

May 12, 2019

Ancient Metallurgist Buried with Bronze Tools Uncovered in Peru

An Archaeologist at a Wari site at Huarmey, Peru was examining a ceremonial square and fell into a hole which contained the tomb of a 1,200-year-old metallurgist wrapped in a textile covering. Further excavations found that the tomb also contained a dozen tools, most of them bronze; a saw, axe, knives, chisel. The bronze was a copper alloy with arsenic. That made the tools harder. They also uncovered an obsidian knife, rare in Wari culture, imported from afar.

The tools show a lot of wear indicating that the deceased man was a professional metallurgist. Slag found in the tomb was probably placed there to indicate his trade. The tomb was located at the bottom of a mountain, the top of which was a tomb excavated by the same team from Poland in 2012 that contained 64 individuals and 1200 rich artifacts dating to the 8th century.

The History Blog has the story here with photos;
http://www.thehistoryblog.com/archives/54996

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

May 11, 2019

New Conquest Research in Mexico

The Aztecs ceremonially disfigured captive Spaniards at the Zultepec-Tecoaque site. The defenders there, in 1520, captured 15 Spanish males, 45 Cuban soldiers, 50 women, and 10 children. The women we’re strung up on skull racks. They were pregnant. They cut another woman in half near a dismembered child. The killings we’re re-enactments of creation myths. Cortes had to leave that group behind to put down an uprising in the Aztec capital. The horses, men and women were eaten, but the pigs the Spaniards brought were not eaten. The Aztecs were suspicious of them.

The town then took on the name Tecoaque, which means “the place where they ate them” in Nahuatl. The inhabitants abandoned the town when Cortes sent a punitive expedition. This research is part of Mexico’s new research and scholarship for the 500th anniversary of the conquest.

AP News has the report here;
https://apnews.com/3148029abd1445b68fa7a3c40c4677b1

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Aztec and Toltec World Magazine
http://bit.ly/1ygAdbd

May 11, 2019

Archaeologists Find Oldest Proof of Ayahuasca use in Bolivia

Archaeologists have found traces of the powerful hallucinogen ayahuasca in a pouch of three fox snouts sewn together dated at 1000 CE in a cave, at the Cuevo del Chileno project, in the Bolivian Andes.  The traces of the drug were made up of different medicinal plants mixed together to create ayahuasca. Liquid chromatography tandem mass spectrometry — turned up trace amounts of bufotenine, DMT, harmine, cocaine and benzoylecgonine. Various combinations of these substances produce powerful, mind-altering hallucinations.

The pouch was found at 13,000 feet elevation and was an artifact of the Tiwanaku civilization (550-950 CE). The drug kit included a snuffing tube made from human hair braids, llama bone spatulas, a textile strip, and dried plant material. The plants in the bundle do not come from that region, so perhaps a traveling shaman or an expert trader  in these substances brought them to the region.

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Berkeley.edu has the report here with photos;
https://news.berkeley.edu/2019/05/06/ayahuasca-sacred-bundle/

Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

May 2, 2019

Update on the Oldest Mummies in the World in Peru

CNN has a report on the oldest mummies in the world, the Chinchorro mummies of Peru, which date back to 5000 BCE, 2000 years older than the Egyptian mummies. They hope for UNESCO status, and the building of a new wing of an area museum to display the mummies.

CNN has the report here;
https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/worlds-oldest-mummies-chile/index.html

And Wikipedia has a very detailed article on these mummies;
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chinchorro_mummies

Mike Ruggeri’s Norte Chico (Peru) World Magazine
http://flip.it/YEMZZ

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Peru (5000 BC-600 BC)
http://mikeruggerisancientperu.tumblr.com

April 27, 2019

Largest Maya Figurine Workshop Uncovered in Guatemala

Archaeologists at the SAA conference this year have announced the discovery of the largest Maya figurine workshop ever uncovered. It dates to 750-900 CE. The workshop was found at the site of Aragon in Guatemala. The workshop itself was destroyed by construction work,  but 400 figurine fragments and molds, and thousands of ceramic pieces have been recovered. The site lasted past the general Maya collapse in the region.

Science News has the report here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2019/04/archaeologists-unearth-largest-mayan-figurine-factory-date

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News Magazine
http://bit.ly/1CeeXyu

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

April 26, 2019

2000 Year Old Magnetized Giant Sculptures on the Pacific Coast of Guatemala Studied

Artisans on the Pacific Coast of what is now Guatemala, at the site of Monte Alto,  2000 years ago, crafted huge human sculptures, many with potbellies, with magnetized foreheads, cheeks and navels. Lightning strikes magnetized sections of boulders that were crafted into the sculptures. The magnetized rocks were seen as the presence of ancestors.

The research will be published in the June Journal of Archaeological Science;

Science News has the report here with photos;
https://www.sciencenews.org/article/ancient-sculptures-guatemala-magnetic-rocks-struck-lightning

Doing a little research on this, I found that this phenomena was already known by earlier researchers.

Here is a report from 2018 in misfitsandheroes with more photos;
https://misfitsandheroes.wordpress.com/2018/01/15/fat-boys-magnetism-and-magic/

The researchers in this report believe the potbellies to be those of pregnant women representing fertility.

Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

April 25, 2019

Maya Vase Uncovered in Belize with Very Long Hieroglyphic Text

A Maya vase with one of the longest hieroglyphic texts ever found on as vase has been uncovered at the site of Baking Pot in Belize. The emblem glyph for the Maya site of Yaxha in Guatemala appears on the vase. The dedication date on the vase is 812 CE.  The archaeologists found the pot with blades, pendants, ink pots, flutes, and human bones. The vase itself would have been a royal drinking vessel. The glyphs reference the end of Baking Pot, a well as the torching of the Maya site of Yaxha and the flight of the ruler to a place of many mosquitos and flies.

More study of the restored hieroglyphics on the vase will yield more information about the collapse of the Maya.

Archaeology News Network has the report here with photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/04/discovery-of-painted-hieroglyphic-vase.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

April 16, 2019

Ritually Sacrificed and Adorned Guinea Pigs Uncovered at an Inca Site in Peru

100 ritually sacrificed guinea pigs dressed in jewelry and wrapped in tiny rugs have been found at the Inca site of Tambo Viejor in southern Peru. They are dated at 1600 CE. The remains were found next to a plaza and buried under buildings. This is the first find of adorned guinea pigs. They appear to have been killed by asphyxiation, probably buried alive.

Archaeology News Network has the report with photos here;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/04/ritually-sacrificed-guinea-pigs-adorned.html#fCliP18D3Qzg3xfk.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

April 11, 2019

Extensive Ancient Maya Crop Cultivation Uncovered in the Yucatan

Archaeologists at the University of Cincinnati have found evidence of Maya surplus crop cultivation up and down the Yucatan Peninsula. The cultivation followed paths of canals and water channels. At Laguna de Terminos on the Gulf of Mexico, they expect to find sites as they begin excavations. Satellite images revealed blocks along drainage ditches and then LIDAR was used. The area was covered in ancient farm fields. They Maya straightened the channels and connected them, and expanded the fields with hydro-engineering. The LIDAR images showed an ancient Maya road not traveled in 1000 years.

Nicolas Dunning of the U. Of C. Is working with Kathryn Reese-Taylor from the University of Calgary and Armando Anaya Hernandez from Universidad Autónoma de Campeche looking for ancient Maya marketplaces using LIDAR. Large squares revealed on LIDAR may be the marketplaces they are looking for. UC botanists are analyzing the soil for proof of marketplaces.

The Maya probably sold maize and manioc and bolts of patterned cotton textiles in their trade network. The farmers there today are farming low yield pastures that produce far less than the Maya produced 1000 years ago because the wetlands are being drained for pasture land.

Eurekalert has the report here;
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2019-03/uoc-urf032919.php

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj

April 11, 2019

Rich Trove of Tiwanaku Artifacts Uncovered in Lake Titicaca, Bolivia

Archaeologists in Bolivia have unearthed Tiwanaku culture artifacts from Lake Titicaca dating to the 8th-10th centuries.  Puma-shaped incense burners, gold, shell, and stone ornaments, and sacrificed juvenile llamas, stone miniatures, a ray-faced deity, pottery puma incense burners, a lapis lazuli puma figurine and other miniature stone animals, engraved sheets, a medallion, and an L-shaped piece marked with puma and condor silhouettes. Perforated gold leaves still attached to fragments of leather may have been used to make ear tassels and other regalia to dress young llamas killed in the ancient ceremonies.

Tiwanaku elites boated out to a reef and sacrificed the young llamas decorated for death, and made these offerings Tiwanaku culture spanned the 5th-12th centuries CE. The artifacts are of exceptional quality because of the way the underwater ecology preserved the artifacts.

The research is published in the proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences

The Guardian has the report here with photos;
https://www.theguardian.com/science/2019/apr/01/archaeologists-discover-exceptional-site-at-lake-titicaca

More photos in the Daily Mail here;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6874655/Archaeologists-discover-ancient-religious-offerings-Lake-Titicaca.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

March 25, 2019

INAH May Have Found the First Aztec Royal Burial.

Archaeologists in Mexico have been looking for an Aztec royal burial for decades. New sacrificial offerings have been uncovered at the Temple Mayor site. They have uncovered the remains of a young boy dressed as a warrior and the Aztec war god and solar diety, and a set of flint knives with mother of pearl and precious stone inlays, a spear thrower and a carved wooden disk placed on the feline’s back that was the emblem of the Aztec patron deity Huitzilopochtli, the war and sun god, and bars of copal.  The remains date to 1500 CE. The offerings were found in a stone box in the center of a circular platform. Only one tenth of the artifacts have been uncovered so far. Aquatic offerings include shells, bright red starfish and coral. A roseate spoonbill that is associated with warriors and rulers, which represent the spirits of warriors as they descend into the underworld. There is a starfish from the Pacific and jade from Central America.
This could be the royal grave of the Aztec emperor Ahuitzotl.

Mexico has cut the budget for the project by 20%. Workers on the find have not been paid since December. So work on this discovery is proceeding very slowly.

Reuters has the report here.
https://af.reuters.com/article/worldNews/idAFKCN1R60FT

The Daily Mail has excellent photos of some of the finds;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6846405/Aztec-war-sacrifices-Mexico-point-elusive-royal-tomb.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
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March 22, 2019

Groundbreaking Study of Women and Agriculture at Cahokia

In a new book on Cahokia agriculture, Gayle Fritz, professor emerita of anthropology in Arts & Sciences and author of “Feeding Cahokia: Early Agriculture in the North American Homeland” (2019 University of Alabama Press), has made it clear that the vast majority of Cahokia’s farmers were women. Their knowledge of agriculture gave them respect and power. Gayle Fritz is doubtful floods, drought or earthquakes brought down Cahokia. Food production at Cahokia was diversified, stable, and the land was in the Mississippi bottomland, the most fertile in America.

The female farmers of Cahokia grew bottle gourds, squash, sunflower, edible weeds like knotweed, maygrass, and chenopods. The genetics of these plants changed as the plants were domesticated. They also harvested hickory and acorns by introducing early crop protection methods, creating nut orchards. Modern flotation techniques have found that the over-reliance on maize story was not a true picture of Cahokia agriculture. When corn became a major crop at 900 CE, all of the other crops increased in abundance, and did not shrink.

Gayle Fritz also questions the ceramic figurines depicting women at Cahokia are not really “corn goddesses.” She points out that the plants on the figurines more accurately represent sunflower seed heads and squashes. And she questions the idea of a male dominated priesthood as the basis of Cahokia religion, given the importance of women.

Phys.org has the story here;
https://phys.org/news/2019-03-women-cuisine-culture-ancient-cahokia.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
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Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Mississippian Art, Religion, and Iconography Magazine
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March 17, 2019

Three Rich Moche Tombs Uncovered in Peru

Archaeologists have uncovered three elite Moche tombs at the Huaca of El Pueblo de Ucupe in Peru. They date to 600 CE. In the first grave, there is one adult, probably female, and one child. Their burial bundles were covered with cinnabar which had ritual significance for the Moche. Grave goods include copper crowns, head/hairbands and breastplates and several ceramic objects. One of them depicts a snail, another a man sitting on a throne, the third an explicit erotic scene.

In the 2nd tomb, an adult male, garbed in copper plate with copper crowns and headbands and more than 50 pottery vessels  was buried next to a llama

In the 3rd tomb there is an adult male with a crown, two headbands, a plate dress, two earplugs, a nosepiece, two clubs, two banners and a funerary mask similar to the one found in the Lord of Ucupe’s tomb, and 150 pottery vessels.

The report is at the History Blog with photos of the find;
http://www.thehistoryblog.com/archives/54183

Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

March 11, 2019

Oldest Tattoo Kit in North America Uncovered

A Ph.D candidate at Washington State University found the oldest tattoo tool in North America when taking inventory of archaeological materials stored for more than 40 years. It is dated at 2000 years old. This pushes back the earliest evidence of tattoo tools in North America back 1000 years. The tool was from the Basketmaker II  culture in the Southwest. No tattoos have been found on human remains in the Southwest and no accounts of its use have been recorded there. Earlier cactus tattoo tools have been found at 1100-1280 CE. There are depictions of tattooing in ancient artwork. The cactus tool that the student found was at a Utah site that is 1000 years older than the known cactus tools.
The tool consists of a 3 ½ inch wooden skunkbush sumac handle bound at the end with split yucca leaves and holding two parallel cactus spines, stained black at their tips.
The tool was put under an electron microscope, X-ray florescence and energy dispersive ray spectroscopy.

A research report has been published at; Andrew Gillreath-Brown et al, Redefining the age of tattooing in western North America: A 2000-year-old artifact from Utah, Journal of Archaeological Science: Reports (2019).  DOI: 10.1016/j.jasrep.2019.02.015

Phys.org has the story here;
https://phys.org/news/2019-02-oldest-tattoo-tool-western-north.html#jCp

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

March 10, 2019

INAH Finds Treasure Trove of Maya artifacts in Yucatan Caves.

INAH has found a treasure trove of 155 Maya artifacts in cave chambers in the cave system of Balamku, near Chichen Itza, in the Yucatan. The discovery will help researchers with finding out about the extent of trade in Mesoamerica at the time of Chichen Itza. New methods of cave archaeology will be used in this discovery. Archaeologists will learn a lot about the history of Chichen Itza by way of this find, and it will shed light on the catastrophic droughts that led to the Maya collapse.

National Geographic has the report here with photos and a video;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/2019/03/maya-ritual-balamku-cave-stuns-archaeologists/

And the Daily Mail has its usual photo and video collection here;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5077989/Secret-passageway-1-000-year-old-Mayan-temple.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

February 20, 2019

Very Large Inca Tomb Uncovered North of Lima.

Peruvian archaeologists have uncovered the tomb of an Inca noble at the Mata Indio site north of Lima dated to 1500 CE.

Five adults and four children look to have been sacrificed to accompany the noble. The children were placed beneath the stone floor on an axis. Spondylus shells were also used as burial offerings. Despite the fact that the tomb has been looted several times, the looters left behind a number of vases. The tomb is very large, 645 squre feet, the biggest uncovered in Lambayeque so far.

Ifiscience has the report here with photos.
https://www.iflscience.com/editors-blog/noble-inca-tomb-containing-the-bodies-of-sacrificed-children-uncovered-in-peru/

And here is a YouTube video of the find;
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Y-9zIpo-EQ

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

February 19, 2019

Ancient 1,400 Year Old Canal Uncovered in Alabama

Archaeologists have uncovered an ancient canal in south Alabama dating to 600 CE. It facilitated canoe travel from Mobile Bay to the Gulf of Mexico. Similar canals have been found in the Everglades and south Florida. The newly uncovered canal connected two bodies of water rich in oysters, crabs, shrimp and fish. The canal was built during the Middle Woodland period, when there was a lot of earthwork and mound construction. A massive trade network spread across the North America, trading copper and silver from the Mid-West, Obsidian from Oregon, shells and teeth from the Gulf Coast. The canal saved travelers from walking through tangling vines and thorny shrubs in the area.

LIDAR and other scientific methods will now be used to find other parts of the canal.

al.com has the report here;
https://www.al.com/news/2019/02/ancient-native-american-canal-discovered-in-gulf-shores.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient North America News
https://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

February 9, 2019

A Perfectly Perfectly Maya Steam Bath Uncovered at the Site of Nakum in Guatemala

Polish archaeologists have uncovered an ancient steam bath at the Maya site of Nakum in Guatemala dated at 700-300 BCE. The Maya associated baths and caves with the emergence of gods and humans, as entrances to the underworld, and with water and fertility.

The sweat bath had a tunnel to drain away excess water and had stone seating around the bath. Large stones were heated near a fireplace so that water could be poured over the stones for steam. A roof of wood, stones and mortar was built over the bath. The bath was filled over with lime and rubble at the end, perhaps due to dynastic changes at the site. This steam bath is the most perfectly preserved Maya steam bath ever found.

The Polish team at the site have been excavating at Nakum for more than 12 years, and have uncovered graves, temples, palaces, residential buildings, a polychrome frieze and an untouched royal tomb.

Archaeology News Network has the report here with good photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2019/01/unique-rock-carved-steam-bath.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

February 7, 2019

Moche Triple Chambered Burial Site Uncovered at the Ucupe Site in Peru

Peruvian archaeologists have uncovered the remains of four Moche elite at the site of Ucupe. The remains are dated to 600 CE. They were found in three ceremonial chambers. One burial was of a possible military leader buried with weapons and a crown. A second chamber contained a woman and child buried with copper ornaments and three ceramic urns. The third chamber burial was of an elderly man.

The Mirror has the report here with great photos;
https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/graves-elite-moche-people-dating-13957051

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

February 5, 2019

An Important Moche Ceremonial Site Uncovered in Peru

Peruvian archaeologists have unearthed a Moche ceremonial banquet hall at the Huaca Limón de Ucupe site in the Lambayeque region. They also found artifacts and human remains at the site. The structure is dated to the 4th century, and then it was suddenly abandoned in the same century

The banquet hall was used by the Moche for banquets held by the rulers. There are two rooms at the complex; the banquet room and a meeting room. The banquet room has two thrones, a large and smaller one. A staircase leads up to the banquet hall, which is on a platform. There are 100 nooks for plates and dishes. Murals of painted sea lions and fish decorate the room. There is a mural of fishermen on a painted boat catching fish. We have murals of these feasts, but this is the first time a feasting area like this has been uncovered.

The site sits upon the banks of the Zana River. Perhaps El Nino flooding ended its history.

National Geographic has the report with photos and a video;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com.au/history/ancient-throne-and-ceremonial-hall-unearthed-in-peru.aspx

Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

January 3, 2018

The First Temple to the Mesoamerican Deity Xipe Totec Uncovered

For the first time, INAH has found a temple dedicated to the Mesoamerica deity Xipe Totec in Puebla. There are two sacrificial altars, three stone sculptures and a stone torso covered in sacrificial skin which all personify Xipe Totec at the site. The temple building dates to 1000-1260 CE, and was in use till 1456 CE. The sculptures are made of volcanic rock imported into the region, The sacrificial skinning ceremony was carried out on two circular altars. The captives were killed on the first altar by staged fights or arrows. They were then skinned on the second altar, by priests wearing the skins of flayed individuals. The skins were deposited in a hole in front of the altars.
INAH found that the skulls were used to close the holes in front of the altar

INAH has the report here (in Spanish) with a slide show (click on the little camera icon near the top of the report);
https://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/7883-descubren-el-primer-templo-dedicado-a-xipe-totec-en-la-zona-arqueologica-de-ndachjian-tehuacan

The Daily Mail has the report translated into English with more photos here;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6549625/Mexico-finds-Flayed-god-temple-priests-wore-skins-dead.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
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January 1, 2019

Archaeologists have uncovered the oldest human remains ever found in Ecuador. 

Three burials at the site of Loma Atahualpa, on the Pacific Ocean, are dated at 6-10 thousand years old. The burials were part of the Las Vegas culture. The materials at the site are transitional from the Mesolithic to the Neolithic. The stone tools in the burials are becoming studied by specialists in Japan. Russian researchers in St. Petersburg and Siberia are studying the morphological features of the human remains.

Phys.org has the report here;
https://phys.org/news/2018-11-archaeologists-oldest-burials-ecuador.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr
http://michaelruggeriancientamericas.tumblr.com

December 13, 2018

Ancient Peruvian Culture Used Chameleon Urine as a Paint Binder

Researchers studying ancient Peruvian Paracas culture (600-100 BCE) pottery made at the site of Cahuachi have found that one of the binders used to hold the paint together contained urine from chameleons. And the chameleon urine was used over time. The urine was used as a binder on white and blue pottery. Some reptiles urine is semi solid. There are snake and salamander motifs on Paracas pottery.

There is a correlation between the older Chavin culture (900-200 BCE) and the later Paracas culture in terms of pigment use such as cinnabar being replaced by red ocher over time.
The 15 different colors used in Paracas ceramics show a shift in pigment use that can show trade and interaction in the area.

The researchers are still trying to figure out what the plant binder is made of. If they can pinpoint that, this will tell them more about trade and cultural connections. The Paracas were a desert dwelling people but still figured out to produce multi-covered designs on vessels and clothing.

National Geographic has the report here with many photos;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/culture/2018/12/ancient-paracas-pots-reptile-urine-chavin-connections/

More photos here;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6487473/Painting-urine-Ancient-Peruvian-culture-used-chameleon-waste-create-white-paint.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
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Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Peru (5000 BC-600 BC)
http://mikeruggerisancientperu.tumblr.com
(Scroll down to the Paracas)

December 10, 2018

Ancient Moche and Lambayeque Skeletons with Feet Missing Uncovered in Peru

32 skeletons dated at 300 AD from the Moche and Lambayeque Cultures in Peru have been uncovered, at the site of El Churro. Half of the skeletons were missing their feet. The feet were re-made into decorative lockets for the surviving family members. Many of the dead were children. They also uncovered 60 large urns, looms and instruments made from bones for making textiles, blankets containing alpacas, llamas, and guinea pigs, metal objects, and wooden spoons for feasting. 23 of the bones were from the Moche era and the rest from the Lambayeque culture. The practice of using human bones for jewelry was a regular practice in Ancient Peru.

The Daily Mail has the report here with good photos and a video;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6483025/Sixteen-1-700-year-old-skeletons-discovered-Peru-feet-MISSING.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
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Mike Ruggeri’s Moche/Wari Era Peru
http://mikeruggerismoche.tumblr.com

November 25, 2018

First Human Remains Uncovered at the Maya Site of Joya De Ceren in El Salvador

The first human remains have been found at the volcanic ash covered Maya site of Joya De Ceren in El Salvador.. The burial is from the Late Classic era (600-900 CE). These are the first human remains found at the site after 40 years of excavations. An obsidian knife was also found with the remains. The site was buried by a volcanic eruption in 650 CE.
Archaeologists will now extend excavations in the same area the human remains were found.

Archaeology News Network has the report here with many good photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/11/first-human-remains-found-in-el.html#EdY8oO73dgaODXBR.97

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

November 21, 2018

A New View of the Coastal Maya

Archaeologists working at the Maya site of Vista Alegre on the Yucatan coast are developing a new perspective on the Maya market system. Vista Alegre is about 100 miles from Chichen Itza, and hundreds of years older. The site was part of a complex network that is revealing a robust system of sea traders, dotting the coastline at 30 mile intervals. Study of the bones of these coastal Maya show that they were healthier than the inland Maya due to their diet of protein rich seafood. Their funeral remains also show their society was more egalatarian, with less elongated head shaping and dental modifications free of jade and obsidian.

The coastal Maya were more of a melting pot of people traveling up and down the coast. Ancient war wounds on the bones of the coastal people show more women killed in violent acts, and many survived battle. The probable explanation for this is that the conflicts on the coast were from pirate raids. And the layout of the sites on the coast points to defenses against marauders.

Recently, researchers uncovered salt works along the Belize coast, and the artifacts uncovered there point to a salt making industry all along the Maya coast. And trading canoes would be laden with salt all along the coastal area. These canoes would also carry Quetzal feathers, jade, shells, and obsidian to transport across Mesoamerica.

Hakai Magazine has the long report here with photos;
https://www.hakaimagazine.com/features/hidden-coastal-culture-of-the-ancient-maya/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya in Quintana Roo Magazine
http://bit.ly/1DY0uZR

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Yucatan Magazine
http://bit.ly/1967BGj

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

November 11, 2018

3000 BCE Elaborate Structures Uncovered in the Atacama Desert, Chile

Archaeologists have uncovered 3000 BCE stone complexes in the Atacama Desert, in Chile, the driest place on earth. They are named Tulan-52 and Tulan-54. These sites show that hunter-gatherers in the region developed complex ceremonial traditions at that very early time period. Tulan-54 is dated to 3000 BCE. Tulan-52 was from 1100 BCE-360 BCE.

Each had a stone complex with several rooms, fire hearths, and grinding instruments for preparing pigments, food and beverages, and for hallucinogens made from cebil and maize.
Nearby, they had a cemetery.

In two of the burials, they also found large gold artifacts: a gold-plated wooden vulture head with green malachite eyes and crest, and an elaborate golden plaque.

The stone complex housed several rooms, in which they found 10 hearths with pits, and 28 richly endowed infant pit-burials.

Just 50 meters away, a cemetery was built.

By 1100 BCE, they domesticated camelids for long distance transport, cultivated plants, used hallucinogens, created pottery, and gold metallurgy.

The Daily Mail has the story here with photos;
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-6369315/Massive-stone-structures-middle-Atacama-Desert-Chile-used-ceremonial-purposes.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

November 8, 2018

Mysterious Wooden Idols Uncovered at the Chimu Site of Chan Chan in Peru

Peruvian archaeologists have uncovered 19 hand carved wooden idols with clay masks in wall recesses in an adobe corridor at the Chimu site of Chan Chan in Peru, They are dated at 1250 CE. Murals of waves and landscapes, and animal images are painted above them, including a cat or lunar animal. It probably served as an entryway into a plaza.

Each idol is unique. Some carry a scepter

Live Science has the report here;

https://www.livescience.com/63940-wooden-idols-peru-archaeology.html

And Ancient Origins has more photos here;
https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/chan-chan-statues-0010889

Mike Ruggeri’s Sican/Chimu Era Peru
http://mikeruggerissicanchimu.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

November 1, 2018

40 New Sites Found Near the capital of the Izapa Kingdom in Chiapas

Archaeologists have found that the ancient Izapa kingdom capital in Chiapas (700 BCE-100 BCE) is surrounded by 40 smaller towns, all laid out in the Izapa style. The newly discovered towns were found using LIDAR, and are laid out in an area encompassing 225 square miles. The design of the towns were laid out in an east-west axis aligned with the sunrise during winter solstice. The north-south axis was pointed just east of north, toward the Tacanávolcano (which eventually erupted and led to the downfall of the Izapa kingdom. Most have a pyramid on tops of platforms looking out on plazas and mounds. Ball courts have been revealed at many of the sites. Magnetometer and LIDAR research will continue. It appears there are large monumental sculptures yet to be excavated.

Live Science has the report here;
https://www.livescience.com/63935-ancient-izapa-towns-discovered.html?fbclid=IwAR2soDvG7O743DbSPM_Qy4eJ8l99uZ0l0aTsyfYvH2o8QS97Buj8v4tL0aM

And a slide show here;
https://www.livescience.com/63930-photos-izapa-kingdom.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr
http://michaelruggeriancientamericas.tumblr.com

image


October 26, 2018

Compelling Evidence for Pre-Clovis at the Debra Friedkin Site in Texas

Archaeologists have uncovered 11 spear points at the Debra Friedkin site near Austin. They date to 13,500-15.500 years ago. They were found buried beneath Clovis tools dating to 11,500 years ago. People lived at this fresh water site for 10,000 years. The points are in the style of “western stemmed points.” Researchers used a scientific technique called optically stimulated luminescence (OSL) to determine the dates. This technique is not as accurate as radio carbon dating, but these tools were in water and could not be dated that way. But the very precise vertical placement of the older tools lying below the Clovis tools gives these dates credence. Western stemmed points have been found along the Pacific Coast, thus furthering the thesis that the First Americans arrived by way of canoes along the coast.

(My note; This is the most compelling evidence for Pre-Clovis from either the Texas Gault site or the Debra Friedkin site so far.)

Science Magazine has the report here;
https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/10/stone-spear-tip-may-have-belonged-first-americans?utm_source=newsfromscience%3Dflipboard%3Dflipboard2408205

The full research article is here in Silence Advances;
http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/4/10/eaat4505?utm_campaign=Science-Advances-%28%40ScienceAdvances%29&utm_content=AAAS&utm_medium=social&utm_source=64&utm_term=SciAdv

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis World
http://preclovisworld.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerispreclovisnews.tumblr.com

October 24, 2018

New Research on Ancient Cacao Domestication

A large team of researchers from 11 institutions studied the process of cacao domestication in the Americas. The ancient cacao domesticators selected for flavor, disease resistance and for theobromine. Criollo was the first variety domesticated. The date for first domestication was at 3,600 years ago in the Amazon Basin, and cacao was brought to Central America by traders. Theobromine was found in Olmec pottery during this time period. The gene sequencing was done at the Center for Institutional Research Computing for the analyses, and Stanford University. The research is published in • Population genomic analyses of the chocolate tree, Theobroma cacao L., provide insights into its domestication process. Communications Biology, 2018; 1 (1) DOI: 10.1038/s42003-018-0168-6

Science Daily has the report here.;
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/10/181024122416.htm

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr
http://michaelruggeriancientamericas.tumblr.com

September 27, 2018

Researchers Find Proof Maya Elite Groups Lived at Teotihuacan

Researchers from INAH and a group of researchers from US universities and from Japan have made new discoveries proving the long term Maya presence at Teotihuacan. They looked at the Plaza of the Columns at Teotihuacan.
The Plaza was used for ceremonial and administrative activities, and as the residence of elites from Teotihuacan and the Maya realm around 350 CE. In 2016, 500 mural fragments were uncovered in this sector, and many are in the Maya style. Years ago, a discovery at the Pyramid of the Moon found Maya style green stone earrings at the site. This new mural discovery affirms the presence of the Maya elite at Teotihuacan as a permanent settlement. 

The Maya glyphs, fluid style, the naturalism of the renderings show a familiarity with the lowlands of the Maya south.. Nearby, there is a cache of animal bones (rabbit, quail, deer) and food seeds (cassava, tobacco, chili, tomato), and pottery. A lid of a glass was found with Maya characters wearing wolf tail headdresses from Teotihuacan. Two thousand pieces of green stone, beads, human figurines, earmuffs and earrings of obsidian and pyrite, large snails and almost complete skeletons of an eagle and a monkey (of a species from the southeast), the skull of a puma and the remains of small snakes were uncovered. They have also found 2,600 human bone fragments that appear to be of dismembered humans who were part of a ritual sacrifice around 400 CE.

Studies of the human bones can now be carried out.

INAH has the report here (in Spanish) http://www.inah.gob.mx/boletines/7579-elite-maya-residio-en-teotihuacan-revelan-hallazgos-en-la-plaza-de-las-columnas

And in English at the Mexico Daily News;https://mexiconewsdaily.com/news/evidence-reveals-mayan-elites-lived-in-teotihuacan/

Mike Ruggeri’s Teotihuacan
http://mikeruggeristeotihuacan.tumblr.com

image

September 20, 2018

Elaborate Altar Uncovered at the Maya site of La Corona

Archaeologists, excavating at the Maya site of La Corona in Guatemala have uncovered an elaborate one ton altar in a temple at the site. It depicts a Maya king, Chak Took Ich’aak, holding a scepter which has two patron gods of the city emerging from it. 

It proves that that the Kaanul dynasty or the Serpent Kingdom developed a political movement that allowed them to defeat Tikal in 562 CE, and rule the Maya lowlands for two centuries. The altar also shows a wedding between a princess from the Serpent Kingdom and a king of La Corona. The Serpent Kingdom stretched through Guatemala, Belize, and Campeche, and was defeated in the end by Tikal.

PhysOrg has the story here With photos;

https://phys.org/news/2018-09-ancient-altar-reveals-mayan-game.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com


September 17, 2018

New Captive Game Research at the Maya site of Copan

Mesoamericans used big game animals like puma and jaguars to show status and power, to make references to ritual sacrifice, and for processing into trade products. Researchers are studying five ritual sites at the Maya site of Copan. Isotope analysis  was performed on the bones and teeth of puma, jaguar, deer, owl, spoonbill, and crocodile to determine the diet and geographical origin of the animals. 

They were able to show that wild animals were kept in captivity for rituals, and for trade purposes, and they showed the extent of that trade was larger than thought before.

The Research is published in the professional Journal PLOS.

Science Daily has the report here;

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/09/180912144430.htm

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Maya News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisacientmayanew.tumblr.com

August 27, 2018

New Olmec Monuments Found in Guatemala

Two large Olmec carved monuments have been found at the Tak’Alik Ab’aj site in Guatemala. The exact location of the find is being kept under wraps to discourage looters. They are dated at 850-300 BCE. The first has a carved head and ruler symbols, and are related to “Grandfather,” an important ancestor who descended from heaven. The second monument weighs five tons and has many ritualistic symbols, including the Kan Cross.

Archaeology News Network and Ancient Origins have the report here with many photos;

https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/07/2500-year-old-olmec-monuments.html#l5PkMJCjmVBPedO8.97

https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/olmec-monument-guatemala-0010425

Mike Ruggeri’s Olmecs
http://mikeruggerisolmecs.tumblr.com

August 22, 2018

Robots at Chavin de Huantar in Peru; New Discoveries

All terrain robots called the Chavin Rovers have been sent into narrow channels at the site of Chavin de Huantar in Peru. The robots have revealed burials of people who built the temple at the site. The dead are not of high standing and were probably sacrificed. They were buried face down under rocks. They will probably find more burials using the robots. 36 tunnels and passageways at the site connect with one another, but the labyrinth is not completely mapped yet.

Archaeology News Network has the report with photos and videos here;https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/08/robots-help-find-new-underground.html#S1MRBRGsrKJO3XKU.97


Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Peru (5000 BC-600 BC)
http://mikeruggerisancientperu.tumblr.com

(Scroll down to Chavin de Huantar)

August 22, 2018

Excavations at a Ramada site in Peru 

1,500 year old remains of 60 people and six trophy heads in 27 funerary pits dating to 550 CE have been uncovered in southern Peru, naturally mummified by the dry climate. They were part of the Ramada culture. Archaeologists have found beautiful and feathered textiles in their burials. At the new site, babies were were buried next to their mothers, perhaps buried at the same time.
The team believes that the trophy heads buried here are from the same community, and are the heads of warriors from the community who were killed in battle. This interpretation is still in dispute. The team that excavated this site will carry out DNA and isotope research on the remains to try and prove their assertions

The findings were presented at the SAA meeting in Washington DC in April and will be published.

Live Science has the report here with photos;

https://www.livescience.com/63295-trophy-heads-mummies-ancient-peru-pits.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

August 20, 2018

3,800 Year Old Wall Reliefs Discovered in Peru

Peruvian archaeologists have discovered a 3,800 year old wall reliefs at the site of Vichama, which was part of the Norte Chico or Caral culture, which stretches back 5,000 years. The reliefs portray snakes and human heads.  A few years ago, archaeologists uncovered 3,800 year old figurines at the same site;

https://www.nationalgeographic.com/magazine/2016/04/explore-ancient-worlds-vichama-peru-figurines/

The figurines and the wall reliefs are probably an offshoot of the Caral culture, and they probably portray ancient Caral leaders, including a priestess. The walls are made of adobe. The reliefs show four human heads with their eyes closed, and two snakes wrapped around them. They appear to be humanoid seed symbols digging into the ground and they face  agricultural fields. The reliefs portray soil fertilization and the deity of water.

International Business Times has the story with photos here;http://www.ibtimes.sg/archaeology-3800-year-old-wall-relief-mysterious-structures-discovered-peru-27076

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

August 15, 2018

1,500 BCE Vast Trade Network Uncovered Between the Southeast and Great Lakes Region

Researchers excavating at a Late Archaic shell ring on the coast of Georgia found a copper band alongside the cremated remains of seven individuals. The remains and copper band are dated at more than 3,500 years ago. Copper and cremated remains from the Late Archaic (3000-8000 years ago) have been rarely, if ever found in the Southeast. The discovery pushes the practice of cremation and the use of copper in the region back to 1000 years earlier.

The copper came from the Great Lakes region. This also pushes the trade of copper in the region much further geographically at this early time. Cremation has been absent as a burial practice in the Southeast during this time period, but is more common in the Great Lakes region. This indicates that the two regions were connected cosmologically and artistically in a much earlier time period. So there was a vast trade network that covered half the continent 3000 years ago.


The National Science Foundation has given a large grant to the research team to continue to investigate this early vast trade network.The paper is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

Archaeology News Network has the report here;https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/08/discovery-of-copper-band-shows-native.html#bPwY6CeFmLKlp5aT.97

August 14, 2018

New Ancient Scarlet Macaw Trade from Mexico to the Ancient Southwest Research

Scarlet Macaws were traded from Mesoamerica to the Ancient Southwest for 2000 years. People at Chaco were importing macaws at 900 CE. A team of researchers at Penn State University has sequenced mitochondrial DNA from 14 ancient Scarlet Macaw remains from Mimbres and Chaco. Scarlet Macaws were bred at Paquime in Chihuahua for trade, but that was at 1250 CE.  The team found that the Macaws from 900 CE we’re locally bred. So the Scarlet Macaw trade has to be a lot older than 900 CE.

So somewhere in Mesoamerica, there has to be a much older Scarlet Macaw breeding center that was trading with Chaco before 900 CE. The team found that scarlet macaws fall into seven genetic populations across the Americas. All 14 of the ancient macaws the team researched came form Haplogroup 6, so they were bred from the same stock. In an earlier article, Patricia Crown published in KIVA that traders walking from Mexico to Mimbres would be 11 to 12 weeks old. Paintings on Mimbres pottery show birds that are 8-10 weeks old. So it is very possible that that the birds arrived from an unknown site closer to Mimbres.

The research is published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

National Geographic has the report here;
https://www.nationalgeographic.com/science/2018/08/news-ancient-dna-chaco-canyon-pueblo-macaws-archaeology/

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientnorthamerica.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Aztlan World
http://mikeruggerisaztlanworld.tumblr.com


July 8, 2018

New Research on Two Ancient Chilean Female Remains Yields Surprising Results

Mummies of two girls, aged 9 and 18 were discovered in Chile in 1976. They are dated to 1399-1475 CE. They were buried with rich grave goods. Their burial clothes were a deep red color. They were ritually sacrificed. The girls were transported all the way from Cusco, 745 miles away, with their goods. The trip would have taken several months. New research on the girls clothes, using chemical and microscopic testing, found that the red color was from cinnabar. Cinnabar is a toxic substance. Those who buried the girls could have sprinkled the cinnabar powder to deter looters. Inhaling the powder can cause mercury poison.The ritual sacrifice ceremony may have been performed to celebrate the area coming under Inca rule.

The research has been published in the journal Archaeometry.

Science Alert has the report here with photos;

https://www.sciencealert.com/cerro-esmeralda-chile-inca-mummies-toxic-cinnabar-in-clothing-ritual-sacrifice

July 28, 2018

INAH Uncovers Unique Child Sacrifice Remains at the Temple Mayor

INAH has uncovered the remains of a 8 to 10 year old boy at the Temple Mayor. He was sacrificed to the Aztec god of war, Huitzilopochtli, in the late 15th century. He was found with body adornments and Huitzilopochtli symbols. The site is called Offering 176, and it was found under stone slabs near the Temple Mayor. The child was placed in a cylindrical box with volcanic rocks pasted with stucco. Of the 204 tombs found at the site so far, the configuration of the grave is unique. He was wearing jadeite jewelry from Guatemala, rectangular wooden earrings and a wooden breastplate called an anahuatl, bearing insignias of the gods Huitzilopochtli, Tezcatlipoca, Tlahuizcalpantecuhtli and Mixcóatl. The connection to Huitzilopochtli was further enhanced by the presence of the wings of a forest hawk, with their ocher and blue coloring, and the obvious location of the burial – in the west side of a Huitzilopochtli temple.
Archaeological News Network has the story here with good photos;

https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/07/remains-of-sacrificed-child-discovered.html#R3h2qVzxRYxlS7PV.97

And further details are here in Ancient Origins;https://www.ancient-origins.net/news-history-archaeology/aztec-child-sacrifice-021990

Mike Ruggeri’s Toltecs and Aztecs
http://mikeruggeristoltecsandaztecs.tumblr.com

Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

July 22, 2018

Ancient Inca Cairns Mystery Solved

There are rows of cairn-like pillars close to an Inca road network that stretched from Columbia to Chile. The mystery was their function. Archaeologists researched 16th century Quechua sources which pointed to calendrical, astronomical and religious purposes. Astronomers at the Atacama Array and the European Southern Observatory ran simulations of sunrises on different dates. And they found the Sun perfectly aligned with the markers. The Incas, then, broadcast their sacred power over large distances. They observed the autumn equinox at several cairn sites and found the sun rose exactly above them.

The Guardian has the report here;https://www.theguardian.com/world/2018/jul/16/chile-atacama-desert-saywas-inca-solar-discovery

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Andean News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerisancientandeannews.tumblr.com

July 14, 2018

3000 Year Old Tobacco Smoking Pipe in Alabama

Archaeologists found an ancient engraved smoking pipe in 1930 in Alabama. Researchers have now subjected the pipe to new scientific analysis using mass spectrometry. Clear traces of nicotine have been found inside the pipe. The pipe is dated to 1685-1530 BCE. This pushes back the earliest known use of tobacco for smoking by 1000 years. The research is posted in the Journal of Archaeological Science.

Science Magazine has the report here:
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/06/americans-have-been-lighting-more-3000-years-ancient-pipe-reveals

(My note; This is not the first time tobacco has been found in the BCE era. In Utah, a site was uncovered that contained artifacts, including tobacco seeds, that dated to 10,000 years ago. No smoking pipes were found, but the presence of tobacco in that cache obviously raises the question, what were these folks doing with gathered tobacco seeds 10,000 years ago.)

Western Digs has that report here;
http://westerndigs.org/ice-age-hunting-camp-replete-with-bird-bones-and-tobacco-found-in-utah-desert/

Mike Ruggeri’s Ancient Americas News on Tumblr
http://michaelruggeriancientamericas.tumblr.com

July 13, 2018

Preserved 700 BCE Graves Uncovered Near Mexico City

INAH has uncovered 26 graves at a site near Copilco, south of Mexico City.  11 of them are in the form of a truncated cone. The site was also used for storage of grains and artifacts. 130 figurines have been uncovered. Most depict pregnant women and also children painted in red, yellow and black. The site was protected from the huge volcanic Xictle explosion circa 245-315 CE. The site may have been a specialized site for infant care by the women at Copilco. INAH is undertaking chemical and pollen analysis to confirm the pre-natal care idea.

Archaeology News Network has the report here with great photos;
https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/06/2700-years-old-graves-discovered-in.html

Mike Ruggeri’s Mesoamerica News on Tumblr
http://mikeruggerismesoamericanews.tumblr.com

July 13, 2018

Mexico Earthquake Reveals New Temple Underneath the Teopanzolco Pyramid

The latest Mexico 7.1 earthquake has unveiled an ancient shrine underneath the pyramid at Teopanzolco. The twin towered pyramid dedicated to Tlaloc and Huitzilopochtli has incurred structural damage to the floor of the top of the temple, leaving the floor sunken and bent. Recovery efforts are underway. And while working on the structure, INAH found a new sunken temple probably dedicated to Tlaloc. There may be a matching one to Huitzilipochtli next to it. They have found that the floor of the newly discovered temple was constructed using reddish volcanic rock and charcoal. They have found ceramic shards and an incense burner.

The new temple dates to 1150-12000 CE. The Teopanzolco pyramid was constructed by the Tlahuica culture, who were later conquered by the Aztecs, who continued work on the pyramid. The site was re-discovered by Zapata’s revolutionary forces in 1910, since it is near Zapata’s home base in Cuernavaca.

Smithsonian has the report here;
https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/earthquake-reveals-12th-century-temple-hidden-within-aztec-pyramid-180969619/

The Daily Mail has its usual excellent photographs and a video of the discovery;
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5948063/Damage-Mexicos-killer-quake-reveals-unknown-temple-built-INSIDE-pyramid.html

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July 9, 2018

Ornate Totonac Yoke Uncovered in Veracruz

INAH has uncovered a large grey stone yoke near Tamiahua, in Veracruz. It has carvings representing a serpent head and rattle, and human heads, and a feline face. The style is Totonac, and is dated between 350 BCE-650 CE. The aesthetics on the stone are remarkable and well preserved. INAH has posted a great photo of the Yoke,  and a great video of its discovery is in the INAH report here;
http://www.inah.gob.mx/es/boletines/7341-hallan-yugo-totonaco-durante-salvamento-arqueologico-realizado-en-tamaulipas-y-veracruz

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July 9, 2018

New Structures Found In El Salvador’s San Andrés Archaeological Complex

Japanese and Salvadorean archaeologists have uncovered a staircase in a pyramidal structure called La Campana. They also uncovered a glass and bowl with animal drawings inside  seven pieces of smooth slate placed vertically and in a circle. The structure is darted to 535 CE. Two pieces of jade decorated with two snake heads with their jaws open and tongues forked were also found.

The San Andres Complex is a large site with a monumental area dating to 600-900 CE, with an acropolis, several pyramids and other structures.

Archaeology News Network has the story here with many photos;

https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/06/new-structures-found-in-el-salvadors.html#2lUdbFh74WbReYm9.97

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July 8, 2018

Inca Nobility Burial Site Found at the Site of Tucume

Archaeologists have uncovered a burial site at the Peruvian site of Tucume, which contains 26 pyramids. 24 mummies have been found clothed in finely woven robes. The burial is dated at 1500 CE, within the Ince time period. Ceramics, grains and fabrics were buried with them. 89 archaeologists are working on the find. It now appears the Inca arrived in the Tucume area in 1470 CE. The archaeologists expect to find ten more mummies at this burial site. The tomb appears to contain both men and women. The women are probably buried next to weaving remains and the men are buried next to oars, wooden paddles and shells. Some of the buried are holding spiked spondylus shells. Three or four of the mummies wrapped in fine clothing are probably Inca nobility.

There are intact ceramics that will tell us more about Inca pottery at the time.

The Daily Mail has the report here with their usual fine photos and a video;

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-5920861/Mummified-Inca-corpses-clothed-finely-woven-royal-robes-unearthed.html

Archaeology News Network also has a report here with more photos.

https://archaeologynewsnetwork.blogspot.com/2018/07/archaeologists-find-tombs-of-24-inca.html

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July 4, 2018

Page-Ladson Site Pre-Clovis

The Page-Ladson site is the first Pre-Clovis site to be documented in the US southeast. Artifacts dating to 14,500 BCE were found in a well dated stratigraphic context. The site is near the Gulf of Mexico.  71 wood samples were carbon dated at Pre-Clovis time periods in conjunction with stone artifacts of coastal plain chert, a knife fragment and a flake. The artifacts are in deposits that contain extinct mammal remains (mastodon, camelid, and bison). A mastodon tusk has marks made by humans to remove the tusk, dated at 14,550 BCE. The Pre-Clovis inhabitants knew where to find freshwater, game, plants, raw materials for making tools, and other critical resources for survival. Further Pre-Clovis investigation in the area is hampered by the fact that most of the area is now underwater. The Page-Ladson site itself is underwater.

The full scientific report is at;

http://advances.sciencemag.org/content/2/5/e1600375.full

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July 3, 2018

New Research on Ancient Louisiana Mounds

Archaeological researchers in Louisiana, using sediment coring, radiocarbon dating, carbon-isotope analysis, optically stimulated luminescence at the Grand Caillou mound are trying to find how ancient peoples in the area chose their village sites. The Grand Caillou Mound was built in stages over several hundred years, ending in 800 CE. The village construction began in 1200 CE. They confirmed that building the mound in layers with clay at the bottom, loose sediments in the middle and clay on top was a way that mound builders built mounds to withstand the elements.

Mound building in America began at 4,500 BCE near resource rich waterways. The Grand Caillou Mound village had a population of 500 people at a time. Ceramics there have been dated to 1000-1400 CE when the site was abandoned, due to saltwater incursion at the site over time.

The research appears in the Journal of Island and Coastal Archaeology

Science Daily has the report here;
https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180522114822.htm

Mike Ruggeri’s Moundbuilders/Ancient Southwest News on Tumblr
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June 28, 2018

Scientific Analysis of 2,000 Year Old Paracas Mummies in Southern Peru

Archaeologists uncovered 2,000 year old mummies at the site of Wari Kayan in southern Peru in 1925. Researchers are now studying the hair of 14 of the mummies with advanced technology to determine their diet. Using isotope analysis. They found that these coastal dwelling people ate a lot of seafood, corn, and drank corn beer. Their food consumption varied little in the months before their deaths.

The findings were published in the March issue of the Journal of Archaeological Science.

The report is at Live Science;
https://www.livescience.com/49892-peru-mummy-hair-diet.html

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June 24, 2018

New Discoveries of Sacrificed Victims at the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan

INAH archaeologists found an Aztec human skull rack or tzompantli under a colonial period house behind the National Cathedral. The scale of it suggested it once held thousands of skulls. The racks were the size of a basketball court. They were likely built between 1486-1502.  They also found skulls that had been stuck together with mortar on towers.
Several thousand skulls had to have been displayed on these structures. INAH has so far collected 180 almost complete skulls and thousands of skull fragments, which are now being meticulously studied. They show that the skulls were defleshed after death, and the decapitations were clean and precise.

75% of the skulls are males between 20-35 years of age. 20% were women and 5% were children. They were in good health. Some may have been slaves sold in markets for sacrifice. This is the same ration as the skulls found at the nearby Templo Mayor. Strontium and oxygen isotopes in their teeth show they are from all parts of Mesoamerica, and lived in the Aztec capital of Tenochtitlan for some time. Historical accounts show some captives lived with the families of the captors for some time.

The skulls also show intentional dental and cranial modifications that were varied according to the culture they lived in, before being transported to Tenochtitlan. Further scientific studies of the skulls can narrow down the specifics of this whole story by individuals, telling us a lot about the rituals all over Mesoamerica and their genetic diversity.

Science Magazine has the report here with many photos and a video;
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/06/feeding-gods-hundreds-skulls-reveal-massive-scale-human-sacrifice-aztec-capital

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June 15, 2018

Ancient Native American King’s House Rediscovered in Florida

Spanish troops met a great Calusa leader at Mound Key, Florida in 1566. The king lived in a structure that could host 2000 individuals. The Calusa created a non-agricultural complex society based on fishing, hunting, and gathering. They ate sharks, turtles, shellfish, mullet, deer, birds, wild produce, and animals from the coasts, estuaries and mangrove forests. They grew chili peppers, papaya, and gourds in home gardens.

They developed a priesthood, military, canals, extensive trade routes, and tribute gathered from 20,000 people. Mound Key was an artificial island made from oysters and clam shells, topped with the huge royal house. The Spanish were forced to withdraw from the area after three years due to unending hostility. The Calusa burned down Mound Key. The Spanish did not return for another century. But Spanish diseases decimated their population. The remaining Calusa fled into the Florida Keys and Cuba by the end of the 18th century.

An archaeological team has reconstructed the outlines of the Calusa great house. It was oval shaped, 80 feet long and 65 feet wide, held up by 150 wooden posts. It was built in three stages starting in 1000 CE.

The research is published in the Journal of Anthropological Archaeology.

The report is in National Geographic;
https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/06/ancient-native-american-kings-house-found-florida-archaeology-science/

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June 12, 2018

The Success of Skull Surgery in Ancient Peru

Researchers have studied ancient Peruvian skulls of individuals who had undergone trepanation; drilling, cutting or scraping a hole in the skull for medical reasons;  59 skulls from 400 BCE to 200 BCE, 421 skulls from 1000 CE to 1400 CE and 160 from the Inca period, 1400 CE to 1500 CE were studied. Ancient Peruvian surgeons treated individuals for traumatic injuries to clean up skull fractures and fluid accumulation that causes pressure on the brain. Some skulls had no evidence of traumatic blows, so they may have been trying to relieve headaches and mental illness. If the bones around the hole showed no signs of healing, the patient died. Smooth bone shows the patient survived. The ancient Peruvian success rate for this procedure was 80% in time. In the American civil War, the success rate was at 50%. The ancient Peruvian success rate climbed from 40% in the earliest era to 80% in the Inca period. Many of the Inca period skulls showed multiple trepanations over time due to successive head blows.

Science News has the report here;
http://www.sciencemag.org/news/2018/06/south-america-s-inca-civilization-was-better-skull-surgery-civil-war-doctors

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June 3, 2018

New Research on the First Americans Coastal Route Idea

Researchers analyzing boulders and bedrocks on Alaskan islands found that a coastal migration route was accessible to humans from Asia entering the New World 17,000 years ago. Ancient seal bones in the area of research have been dated to 17,000 years ago. This shows food was available in the area of glacier retreat 17,000 years ago. Four islands were studied 200 miles south of Juneau. Researchers took rocks from that area to determine how long the islands studied had been free of ice. They used a technique called surface exposure dating, which shows the time when the rocks began accumulating chemicals that appear as the ice melts. The date for this chemical change on the rocks was at 17,000 years ago.

The evidence at Monte Verde in Chile has proven humans were living there 15,000 years ago. The same is proven for the Paisley Cave site in Oregon. The coastal route for the First Americans would have been a far easier route to enter areas south of Canada than the treacherous route humans would have to take overland. And that area lacked the resources for human survival long after 15,000 years ago.

The research is published in. The May 30 journal Science Advances.

Science Daily has the report here;

https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2018/05/180530144144.htm

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Mike Ruggeri’s Pre-Clovis and Clovis World Magazine

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March 27, 2018

Intact 1,000 Year Old Mummy Uncovered at Pachacamac, Peru

A team from Brussels have found a 1000 year old intact mummy at Pachacamac in Peru. The site itself has three monumental structures, including a sanctuary to local ancestors. The Incas transformed it into a water and healing temple. Since it is so well preserved, they can study the mummy using advanced medical imaging without unwrapping the body.

Eurekalert has the report here;
https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2018-05/uldb-uad052418.php

Scroll down on this page to see multiple articles on Pachacamac and photos;
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May 22, 2018

Unusual Viru Culture Burials Uncovered in Northern Peru

Archaeologists working on the northern Peruvian coast have uncovered 50 burials from the Viru Culture (100-750 CE) in the town of Huanchaco. 30 of the 50 burials have additional body parts added to the remains. Additional arms and legs were added to the burials. Many of the burials show cut marks and blunt force trauma. Those with trauma are the ones to be buried with extra limbs. Perhaps the extra limbs were a sacrificial offering. The graves also contain ceramic vessels with human faces, whimsical animal details, jewelry, folded copper sheets inserted into the mouths of the deceased. A copper fishhook wrapped in gold foil was also uncovered.

National Geographic has the report here with photos;https://news.nationalgeographic.com/2018/04/peru-viru-ancient-shark-fishermen-archaeology/