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2 lost Maya cities found in jungle

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Ivan Sprajc spearheaded the discovery of the ancient city of Chactun and Tamchen in Campeche. Photo: INAH
Ivan Sprajc spearheaded the discovery of the ancient city of Chactun and Tamchen in Campeche. Photo: INAH

Monster mouth doorway at Lagunita.
Monster mouth doorway at Lagunita.

A group of archeologists has unearthed several Maya ruins in the state of Campeche. They are the remains of two cities inhabited by the Maya people between 600 and 900 AD.

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Click to see Google map.

Discovered in the northern part of the Biosphere Reservation of Calakmul, there are ruins of pyramids, a palace and a monster mouth doorway, the most significant finding.

One city there was named Lagunita after American archaeologist Eric Von Euw visited it in the 1970s. But after taking pictures, Von Euw failed to properly record the site’s location, and the city was again lost until now.

The other urban center is Tamchen, which is Mayan for deep well.

Ivan Sprajc, of the Scientific Research Center of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts, led the expedition with approval of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) Archaeology Council and with funding by the National Geographic Society.

Last year, Sprajc’s team found another ancient city, named Chactun, near Lagunita and Tamchen, and they are investigating any historical connection between the sites.

Future research will clarify the relationship between Rio Bec and the Chenes regions as well as the link of Río Bec with the Kaan dynasty, established during the Late Classic period.

Source: INAH

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