Archaeologists have uncovered a secret Aztec tunnel that has been hiding under the busy streets outside of Mexico City for more than 600 years.
Decorated with carvings and paintings, the passage dating from the 15th century was built by Emperor Montezuma I and linked to the god of water and fertility – Tlaloc.
The old discovery is part of a 15-year conservation project around La Calzada de San Cristobal, which houses an enormous structure built by indigenous people hundreds of years ago.
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Archaeologists have discovered a secret Aztec tunnel room that has been hiding under the busy streets of Mexico City for more than 600 years
The findings were announced by the Mexican Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), which noted that the wall was adorned with various petroglyphs and statues, giving them an & # 39; enormous archaeological value in the city of Ecatepec de Morelos in the central Mexican state from Mexico & # 39 ;, as reported by to express.
Decorations of the 27.5-foot-long wall are 11 carved images and, like what was once a wooden gate.
Other items found inside are artifacts of glass, porcelain, majolica, in addition to remains of statues – there is a decapitated sitting figure and what appears to be feet of another statue.
What the most excited archaeologists are the most are the images associated with the Aztec god of water and fertility – Tlalo.
The tunnel chamber was discovered outside of Mexico City (right). Decorated with carvings and paintings, the passage from the 15th century is probably built by emperor Montezuma I and linked to the god of water and fertility – Tlaloc (photo on the left is an image)
This ancient god is usually depicted with eyeglasses and fangs, and is often combined with lightning, corn and water in visual representations and artworks.
Although Tlalo is believed to be a giver of life, Aztecs feared this god for believing that he sent hail and lightning down and had the ability to poison their springs.
The site where the wall was found is part of a conservation project around La Calzada de San Cristobal for more than ten years.
It was believed that this tunnel was built by the famous Aztec empire Moctezuma I, which is said to have brought social, economic and political reforms to strengthen Aztec rule.
Moctezuma I, the second Aztec emperor, reigned from about 1440 to 1469, followed by Moctezuma, the emperor who first confronted and succumbed Hernan Cortes.
The site where the wall was found is part of a conservation project around La Calzada de San Cristobal for more than ten years
It was believed that this tunnel was built by the famous Aztec empire Moctezuma I, which is said to have brought social, economic and political reforms to strengthen Aztec rule. Pieces were found in the tunnel such as feet and a decapitated sitting figure
Aztecs were famous for their agriculture, introducing irrigation, draining swamps and creating artificial islands in the lakes.
This civilization also developed a form of hieroglyphs, a complex calendar system, and built famous pyramids and temples – they were also known for their cannibalism and human sacrificial rituals.
Aztecs were famous for their agriculture, introduced irrigation, draining marshes, creating artificial islands in the lakes and building complex structures such as
In May, archaeologists discovered the remains of more than 450 people at the old Zultepec-Tecoaque site in what is now modern Mexico City. Experts say they were imprisoned for six months, fed, and then used in sacrifice scenes from mythology.
They were members of a Spanish convoy from Cuba that reached Aztec territory in 1520, laden with supplies for Conquistador Hernan Cortes.
But they met a creepy end at the hands of their Aztec kidnappers, who kept them imprisoned in doorless cells where they were & # 39; fattened & # 39; for sacrifice.
The Aztec residents of Zultepec captured a convoy of about 15 male Spaniards, 50 women, 10 children, and 45-foot soldiers in 1520. During the next six months, the city ate the prisoners – including toddlers and pregnant female warriors & # 39; whose heads were strung on skull racks beside their men.
The 27.5-foot-long wall adorn 11 sculptured images, as well as what was once a wooden gate. Other items found within are artifacts made from glass, porcelain, majolica
The tunnel is part of a 15-year project that excavates an enormous structure in the area that was built hundreds of years ago
Archaeologists find engravings around the tunnel, suggesting it was built in the 15th century
Archaeologists called it one of the greatest victories for the indigenous people of Mexico during the continent's invasion, but only a year later the Spaniards conquered the Aztec empire and overthrew the capital, Tenochtitlan.
Two months before this horrific discovery, another one was made that shows another dark side of this civilization.
A wealth of Aztec sacrifices was discovered in the center of Mexico City that experts believe could lead to the grave of an Aztec emperor.
The offering includes richly decorated jaguar dressed as a warrior and a young boy, dressed to resemble the Aztec war god and sun god.
The tunnel was first discovered by workers digging in the area to build a bus stop. The tunnel is more than 600 years old and was built by Aztecs
It was believed that this tunnel was built by the famous Aztec empire Montezuma I, who reportedly brought social, economic and political reforms to strengthen Aztec rule
A set of flint knives that are elaborately decorated with mother-of-pearl and precious stones are also found in the partially examined grave.
Experts say it was once established in front of the temple, where the earliest historical records describe the final resting place of Aztec kings, including Ahuitzotl.
Ahuitzotl, who ruled between 1486 and 1502 AD, was one of the greatest generals of ancient America, according to historical records.
If confirmed as a royal funeral this would mark a historic scoop, because no such site has been found yet – despite decades of digging.
For many, Aztec people seemed to be ahead of their time, their culture was ultimately largely eradicated, and the indigenous population was full of illness and anticipated the end of their society.
WHO WERE THE AZTECS AND WHAT WE KNOW ABOUT THEM?
The Mexica, later known as the Aztecs, were migrants from the north of the desert who arrived in Mesoamerica in 1300.
This formerly nomadic tribe was not welcomed by the locals who they considered inferior and undeveloped.
Legend has it that as a result the Aztecs have walked on a sign to indicate where they should settle.
In 1325 AD, this sign, an eagle and a snake that fought on a cactus, was seen on Lake Texcoco – which prompted the Aztecs to found their capital, Tenochtitlan.
By 1430 AD, the Aztecs had assimilated aspects of the surrounding tribes and developed into a structured society.
Their army became powerful and campaigns were fought and won.
The Triple Alliance was created with the lords of Texcoco – located on the eastern shores of Lake Texococo – and Tlacopan – sometimes referred to as Tacuba, located on the western shores of Lake Texococo – thereby further strengthening Aztec power.
The Aztecs were at war for two main reasons; to pay tribute and to capture prisoners.
They needed prisoners because they believed that the gods should be satisfied with human blood and hearts to ensure that the sun rose every day.
Conquering new regions offered the opportunity to capture slaves that were an important part of Aztec society.
Prosperity and unity within the Aztec peoples brought confidence. Under a succession of rulers, armies were sent further through Mexico.
At the beginning of the 1500s, the Aztec empire stretched from the Atlantic to the Pacific and in Guatemala and Nicaragua.
The arrival of Hernan Cortés with Spanish soldiers in 1521 AD brought the end of the empire.
Source: the British Museum
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