Incredible New Survey Reveals Ancient Mayan Structures, Proving They Were Way Ahead Of Their Time
Beneath the rainforests of Guatemala, researchers that have been studying the Mayan Empire and they made an incredible discovery. They found that there are over 900 habitations, which include at least 4 big cities, with raised causeways hundreds of miles long that connect them all together.
History has proven that Mayan technology has always been sophisticated. However, this new research proves that they were advanced beyond their years.
It was during the light detected and ranging survey, or LiDAR, which according to its website ‘uses the pulse from a laser to collect measurements to create 3D models and maps of objects and environments. In a nutshell, the system calculates how long it takes for beams of light to hit an object or surface and reflect back to the laser scanner.’
In essence, it allows researchers, archaeologists and the like to do what used to take years, sometimes decades to discover, while also lowering the expense by now being able to simply flying over the site in an airplane a few times to get the info they need.
When the LiDAR flew 650-square miles over the northern area of Guatemala’s Mirador-Calakmul Karst Basin (MCKB), what they found was at least 30 famous ball courts form the Ancient Mesoamerican team sport, as well as 195 cement reservoirs that would drain the lakes in the area dry, as well as 110 miles of raised walkways that connected as many as 417 villages.
Moreover, this all dates to the late and middle Preclassical period of Mayan history, where such events took place as when the Babylonians destroyed the Temple of Solomon, when Assyria sacked the ancient Elamite capital of Susa, as well as where the Greco-Persian wars took place, such as the battle of Thermopylae.
For the past 40 years, there have been ongoing excavation in the MCKB area using traditional means, which revealed 56 sites, including that of some of the biggest stone pyramids found in the history of Mayan culture, called La Danta. Located within the “lost city of the Maya,” they are made from 205,508 limestone blocks and the structure is even bigger than the great pyramid of Giza. Studies show that it would have probably taken between 6 to 10 million days of labor to build.
According to the research team, which was led by Richard D. Hansen, an Idaho State University archeologist, he concluded in the Cambridge University Press, of their LiDar survey study, “The skeleton of the ancient political and economic structure as a kingdom-state in the middle and late Preclassic periods has a tantalizing presence in the Mirador-Calakmul Karst Basin.”
LiDAR delivers the goods. A new mapping study of the Mirador-Calakmul Karst Basin (MCKB) of northern Guatemala has revealed over 900 Preclassic Maya sites, condensed into 417 ancient cities, towns, and villages of at least six tiers. pic.twitter.com/KxYYPxywQc
— Stone Age Herbalist (@Paracelsus1092) December 20, 2022
The Stone Age Herbalist tweeted that being able to have a topographical visualization of the MCKB was huge, and attempting to make sense of every individual site level was momentous. The researchers managed to use a 6-level tiered system, with the El Mirador being the highest tier consisting of the giant pyramid, while the other areas move backwards from that point.
Through this, the study authors managed to define cities, towns, villages, but admitted that their data was still limited to ‘visible features on the surface.’
The authors went on to say that some settlements could have been bigger than what the surface architecture actually suggests, explaining, “To further complicate issues, the Mirador Basin Project has identified an astonishing presence of “invisible” house mounds, with packed earthen floors, postholes, and Preclassic pottery in situ, but with no surface indications of architecture.”
They also said, “The consistency of architectural forms and patterns, ceramics, sculptural art, and unifying causeway constructions within a specified geographical territory suggests a centralized political, social, and economic organic solidarity among the occupants.”
“The magnitude of the labor in the construction of massive platforms, palaces, dams, causeways, and pyramids dating to the Middle and Late Preclassic periods throughout the MCKB suggests a power to organize thousands of workers and specialists, ranging from lime producers, mortar and quarry specialists, lithic technicians, architects, logistics and agricultural procurement specialists, and legal enforcement and religious officials, all operating under a political and ideological homogeneity,” they added.
Research shows that the poor soil conditions of tropical rainforests tend to contribute to difficulty in building and construction during the Mesoamerican civilization. However, it seems that it wasn’t an issue for those ruling during the El Mirador period to get thousands of people to create the similar Stonehenge-like structure. Rather, they managed to build their construction projects on a regular basis, and on a large scale too for hundreds of years at that.
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