Archaeologists Make Grisly Find in Ancient Maya City
Mass grave bolsters belief that the Maya dismembered
By Kate Seamons, Newser Staff
Posted Sep 15, 2013 5:31 AM CDT
The skulls found in the historical city of Uxul were separated from the bodies.   (Wikimedia Commons)

(Newser) – The discovery of a mass grave is by its nature a gruesome find, but what researchers uncovered in the ancient Maya city of Uxul in present-day Mexico is that to the extreme. University of Bonn archaeologists on Tuesday announced that they have found a 1,400-year-old grave containing the dismembered bones of two dozen people, reports Nature World News. What those bones reveal is twofold: First, the dead were no lowly individuals, as evidenced by the presence of bits of jade that had been inserted into holes drilled in some of the teeth. Second, they prove a bit of history: "that the dismemberment of prisoners of war and opponents often represented in Maya art was in fact practiced," says the dig's lead.

Archaeologist Nicolaus Seefield found the gravesite in an "artificial cave," which he explains to LiveScience had likely functioned as a water reservoir before the burial "since the cave's floor was perfectly clean." The skeletons found there were not "in their original anatomical articulation," he says. "The observed hatchet marks on the cervical vertebra are a clear indication of decapitation"; most had their lower jaw detached, and the "spatial pattern" of the bones is consistent with dismemberment. The archaeologists believe the dead were either prisoners of war or Uxul nobles; they hope upcoming isotope analysis will reveal whether they were from Uxul—which is near what is now the Guatemala border—or elsewhere. Neat fact from LiveScience: "Uxul" means "at the end." (It wasn't the only Mayan discovery of the summer: A "lost" Maya city was discovered in June.)

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Showing 3 of 46 comments
HMD-SMD-ITY
Sep 15, 2013 9:37 PM CDT
This is important because so much is lost due to contemporary destruction. Take the Mayan pyramid in Belize that they allowed to be ground down and destroyed for road gravel. Who knows, maybe that pyramid had paintings or inscriptions that show the passing of a huge celestial object that may some day run into Earth. It may be too large to break up unless we can find where it is now and come up with a countermeasure to it. But that pyramid is gone, never to be seen again. What else is hidden under the canopies? Is there a whole city made of gold? Would the discovery of that much gold cause a crisis? I do know that's the reason diamond wholesalers keep the supply of diamonds under strict tow because they have enough diamonds on hand to cause them to be cheaper than cubic zirconium.
homer57
Sep 15, 2013 5:03 PM CDT
Let give you all some FACTS" and I mean Biblical FACTS: Man is rotten, he is deceitfull, he is dishonest and he has a wicked nature, and i mean a desparetly wicked (Jeremiah 17:9) nature...let's face it, the KJV Bible says...all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God...Romans 3:23, 6:23...ther is NONE good, no not one...The only way to change this old nature is get a new nature 1 Cor 6:11 For w/out Jesus Christ ye can do nothing! John 15:5b KJV
True-News
Sep 15, 2013 2:35 PM CDT
more connect the dots: How is it NOT related to a pervasive "Mayan" culture? We are talking about a culture that finds it perfectly normal to torture, murder and sacrifice human beings. This article gives the impression that attrocities are only commited by other ancient peoples and the world today is somehow "civilized". 4. Outside the .US. - Uncountable-Unspeakable murders, rapes -drug & sex traffic worldwide and human slavery, in most cases, by the governments of Islamic countries or African nations with political connections to the European union or the U.S and Mexico that facilitate their atrocities by political correctness and the personal profit interest of officials. From the headlines of today:SYRIA- Deadly gas and other chemical weapons have killed at least a few hundred. Our government conveniently “forgets” that thousands have been slaughtered by less “dangerous” means. The stupidity of WMD's being classified as some how, the real “dangerous” weapons while thouands are killed by conventional means is absurd. Political correctness destroying our foreign policy and our credibility is some how acceptable to this administration. It seems obvious and unmentioned by any news reporters that the WMD's that were in IRAQ a decade ago some how got to Syria and other neighboring countries. In fact the weapons were there when Bush went after them and now in the absurd position taken by “the international community” Syria has about 2-3 months to hide, or transport them out of the area where UN inspectors will be looking. They sure know how to do it -have had plenty of practice at deception and moving weapons to hide them. In the ultimate deception our current administration is condoning the very same actions against a country that they won an election on, by condemning the Bush administration actions. It is the ultimate hypocrisy both on an individual and governmental level. I challenge CNN -ABC -NBC - OR ANY OTHER "NEWS" to report the truth. There was a time when journalism was based on finding the truth and accuracy in reporting.