Archaeologists Found The Rare, Burnt Remains Of Maya Royals, Signifying The End Of A Dynasty

Adrian - - illustrative purposes only

During investigations of an ancient Maya pyramid at the archaeological site of Ucanal in Guatemala, archaeologists dug up the remains of royal figures.

The bones appeared to have been burnt in an “act of desecration.” The site where the remains were found was once the capital of a Maya kingdom called K’anwitznal.

The ritual that involved the burning took place sometime in the ninth century. It seemed to have served as a display of power, marking a change in political leadership. It was an extremely rare example of such a phenomenon.

“Key tipping points of history are rarely found directly in the archaeological record, not least because an event’s significance often lies in the perception of the participants,” wrote the authors of the study that was published in the journal Antiquity.

“This article documents an early 9th-century ritual fire-burning event at the Maya site of Ucanal in Guatemala and argues that it marked a public dismantling of an old regime.”

While conducting excavations, the team of researchers discovered a deposit containing burnt human remains and several artifacts.

After the human remains were analyzed, the researchers determined that there were at least four individuals.

They were all adults ranging from 21 to 60-years-old. At least two of them showed signs of being burnt.

The artifacts included nearly 1,500 fragments of greenstone pendants, beads, plaques, and mosaics.

Adrian – – illustrative purposes only

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