An ancient city of the Mayan empire, in south eastern part of Mexico, has been recently discovered with the help of aerial photographs. This city covers an area of 22 hectares and is over a 1000 years old.
Dubbed Chactun , meaning “red stone” or “large stone” in Mayan, this city would have sheltered the famous Maya civilization located in the Mexican state of Campeche , in the peninsula of Yucatan . The city was discovered by a team of archaeologists from the National Institute of History And Anthropology and the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts . It has been discovered by means of stereoscopic analysis of aerial photographs. This is a technique used to created 3D images using two dimensional images.
Archaeologists believe the city dates between 600 and 900 AD. “This is really one of the largest sites of the Mayan civilization”, says Ivan Sprajc , an archaeologist from Scientific Research Centre of Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts. Chactun is under a dense layer of vegetation, that is why it took us few years along with the development of stereoscopic analysis technique to succeed in finally uncovering this lost city. “We found many results during the analysis, confirming that these were architectural remains” says Ivan Sprajc .
The archaeological site contains several recognizable pyramids of Mayan art some of them measuring over 23 meters high. Some other remains include Mayan ruins as stelas and altars. The site is in addition to 80 other cities, temples and relics discovered in 1996, when the project for the discovery of archaeological remains of Mexican southeast was launched. Chactun is about 25 kilometers from the site of Xpujil, a well known Mayan site.
It is always exciting to learn about such discoveries as very recently we learnt about discovery of 1200 years old Cambodian city. It is through this kind of exploration we can learn a bit more about a culture that mysteriously disappeared around 900 AD. Of course, we can imagine that it will take time for archaeologists to discover all the secrets of the city of Chactun . Do you think there are still more mysteries to be discovered in the tropical jungles of Latin America?