Mexican archaeologists discover the tomb of a pre-hispanic governor in Copalita
The pre Hispanic burials were registered by specialists of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH-Conaculta) during the sixth season of the investigation. This investigation takes place in the superior façade of the site’s Mayan Temple, where the elite resided; there, archaeologists found a sepulcher made with masonry’s stone blocks of about 1.8 meters (5.9 feet) high and 1 meter (3.28 feet) wide. The sepulcher contained the skeleton of an individual, presumably of the male sex who was between 20 and 23 years old at death.
Archaeologist Raul Matadamas Diaz, director of the Bocana del Rio Copalita investigation project, informed that the sepulcher –the first one that has been discovered in this site– is estimated to date back to 700 AD and although cultural affiliation has not been yet determined, it could be associated to ancient groups that were in contact with Zapotecs of the Valles Centrales in Oaxaca.
INAH’s archaeologist elaborated about the offerings found which were accompanying the skeleton, among which a severed femur believed to have been used as a baton. “This finding –he emphasized– will help understand the funerary practices of the civilizations that occupied Copalita, especially its elite from which we have no information until now”.
“Around the sepulcher, we also discovered the burial of 22 more individuals, among which a female character stood out. She was the first skeleton in this pre Hispanic site that was facing the floor, which might indicate a sign of submission to the principal character in the tomb. Her skeleton had two jade earflaps and beads located in her lumbar vertebras”, Matadamas said.
The specialist at INAH-Oaxaca Center explained that over the female skeleton were four pots, one of which is a bowl decorated with a glyph in a relief that has the representation of an owl between two snakes, an image that is repeated in the contour of the piece and which is associated to ancient Zapotecs from the Valles Centrales in Oaxaca.
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