New Discoveries at the Pyramid of the Sun Include Greenstone Mask


According to Past Horizons:  Adventures in Archeology’s website, archeologists have unearthed some amazing finds at the Pyramid of the Sun.  One of the items discovered is what they believe to be a 1900-year-old green stone mask under the Temple of the Sun at Teotihuacan in Mexico.  They also believe the intended purpose of the pyramid may be something entirely different than they first suspected.  Read on.

The Pyramid of the Sun Project team, led by Alejandro Sarabia, reached their treasures by excavating a 116-meter long tunnel originally excavated in the 1930s by archaeologist Eduardo Noguera.  Their goal was to reach the bedrock layer the pyramid is anchored on to verify the presence of burials and offerings.

What they discovered wasn’t limited to just the stone mask.  Three structures were identified which were constructed prior to the Pyramid of the Sun.  The remains of 7 human burials were discovered which were also interred during a time prior to the pyramid’s construction.  Two votive deposits were also recovered:  one which was discovered in the inside the original foundation.  This suggests it was deposited as part of a consecration ceremony dating back more than 1900 years.

It was in this deposit that the greenstone mask was discovered.  Although three greenstone sculptures were discovered, according to studies conducted by Dr. Jose Luis Ruvalcaba, from the National University Physics Institute (IF UNAM), “the only greenstone mask discovered in the ritual context of Teotihuacan.”  The mask carved was from a single stone and only 11 cm high which makes it different than other Teotihuacan types.  Archeologists theorize it was actually a portrait. A seashell was found next to the sculpture.

A considerable number of artifacts were found.  Obsidian artifacts included projectile heads and small knives, as well as an anthropomorphic eccentric artefact and three anthropomorphic figurines with shell and pyrite eyes.  Eleven Tlaloc vessels, (dedicated to the God of Rain) were discovered too.  Most of them were broken.  Further objects included three pyrite discs, one with a 45 cm diameter and mounted on a slate slab – the largest ever recovered from Teotihuacan.

Of particular interest was the large quantity of animal skeletons discovered. The skull of a feline was placed to the northeast; a canine to the south, and an eagle covered with volcanic rock, to the southeast. The bird had been fed before the sacrifice with two rabbits, analysis has revealed. This kind of faunal deposition is similar to those found as offerings in the Pyramid of the Moon.

The archaeologists had long suggested the function of the pyramid was linked to the underworld because of the tunnel excavated by the inhabitants of Teotihuacan.  The objects found in this recent excavation, however, seem to indicate the Pyramid of the Sun was possibly connected to a rain deity, an early version of Tlaloc.

See original article here.

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