Maya and Aztec

Ancient Mesoamerican civilizations

Recent discovery of burials and offerings in Cholula

Category: News reports

INAH, may 25, 2009. The 17 Prehispanic skeletons discovered recently near Cholula Historical Center, in Puebla, could correspond to Olmeca-Xicalanca ancient culture; if this information is validated, it would confirm the presence of this group during the early Post Classic period (900-1150 AD) to the northeast of the Great Pyramid. The aforementioned differs with Tolteca-Chichimeca historical sources, which only make reference to population settled to the south of the monument.

Excavations conducted by National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) archaeologists parted from the salvage named “Colector Pluvial 12 Oriente desde la 4 Norte a la Prolongacion 6 Oriente, San Pedro y San Andres Cholula, 2009”, look forward to determine the origin of human remains and offerings discovered in San Pedro Cholula municipality during public works.

Ashuni Emmanuel Romero Butron, man in charge of archaeological excavations, remarked that this people was buried before the arrival of Tolteca-Chichimeca groups around 1150 AD; the information leads to new discoveries regarding Olmeca-Xicalanca groups, which had their capital city in Cacaxtla, Tlaxcala. Human remains and offerings have been recovered gradually at the 16 square meters-construction of a pluvial water collector, with the collaboration of archaeologists Martha Saenz Serdio and Ananta Gricelides Mazadiego Cruz. The INAH specialist explained that remains were found in fetal position, oriented to northeast, north and east (features of Post Classic burials in the area), accompanied mainly with ceramic offerings, like pots and flat bowls; a jadeite bead and a complete obsidian knife were also found.

Sex and age of remains have to be determined yet, but most of them could have been adults and teenagers, declared Romero Butron.

Olmeca-Xicalanca culture had its peak between 7th and 10th centuries AD, being their main city the fortified Cacaxtla. The region was a natural passage that communicated Central High Plateau (Altiplano Central) with Gulf of Mexico, Oaxaca and Pacific Coast, making it a strategic commercial zone. When Tolteca lineage from Tula declined, after a long pilgrimage, they defeated Olmeca- Xicalanca regional groups, which continued dwelling the neighborhoods until Spaniards arrived.

Ashuni Romero concluded mentioning that remains may be Carbon-tested to precise their age.

Source: INAH.

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