New Discoveries in Archaeology

This morning I thought I would mention a couple of interesting news items in case you may have missed them.

The first item is the discovery of an Aztec ballcourt in Mexico City. According to a report from the Reuters news service:

The underground excavations reveal a section of what was the foundation of a massive, circular-shaped temple dedicated to the Aztec wind god Ehecatl and a smaller part of a ritual ball court, confirming accounts of the first Spanish chroniclers to visit the Aztec imperial capital, Tenochtitlan…

…Archaeologists also detailed a grisly offering of 32 severed male neck vertebrae discovered in a pile just off the court.

“It was an offering associated with the ball game, just off the stairway,” said archaeologist Raul Barrera. “The vertebrae, or necks, surely came from victims who were sacrificed or decapitated.”

…Early Spanish accounts relate how a young Moctezuma played against an elderly allied king on the court and lost, which was taken as sign that the Aztec Empire’s days were numbered.

In other news, mysterious pagan circles are thought to be 800 years older than Stonehenge. According to an article in the Daily Mail:

New radiocarbon dating has revealed that vast wooden palisades at Avebury, Wiltshire, are more than 800 years older than experts previously thought.

When first discovered 30 years ago, experts thought they were built in 2,500 BC – making them the same age as the Stonehenge just 20 miles down the road. 

The strange wooden enclosures stretched over more 2.5 miles (4km) and used more than 4,000 trees – suggesting that mysterious rituals were taking place in this region far earlier than previously thought. (Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-4580198/Mysterious-wooden-circles-Avebury-older-Stonehenge.html#ixzz4ji9yYeKm )

As author Graham Hancock always says, things keep getting older.

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