Archaeologists find Mayan burial grounds in Mexico

24th Jan 2013

A number of 1,200-year-old Mayan burial grounds have been discovered by archaeologists close to the Maya ruins of Chichen Itza in southern Mexico.

The find took place only 12 miles from the Unesco world heritage site during a highway expansion. Archaeologists came across a number of bones in rectangular graves, in addition to 30 ceramic pieces, pottery, plates, glasses, obsidian points, jade beads and seashell earrings.

The findings are significant as they suggest the site had been used as a base by a significant number of people, according to archaeologist Marisa Carrillo.

"The interesting thing about these burial grounds are the offerings found. The offerings mark an occupation period. The ceramics, the chronology make us realise these burials were important in that period because of the type of offerings used," the expert said.

Mayan communities may have lived at the location removed from Chichen Itza between 600 and 800 C.E, and before the peak of the ancient capital city's classical period, the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) suggested.

Jose Osorio, also an archaeologist, suggested the settlers arrived in the region from a bigger city.

"Normally burial sites of this type reflect on the lifestyle of the community who used to live in larger cities, the type of people who built the pyramids we have around us," he said.

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