Spanish and Mexican archaeologists have returned X’baatuna pre-Hispanic Mayan paradise of difficult access, in order to continue the work season this 2022 after the discovery of new structures in the cultural area.
“This year we are carrying out two types of work: cleaning the structures to carry out drone flights and obtaining high-resolution information on their volume, height and type of construction in the upper part of the Mayan buildings, as well as various surveys (of the new discoveries),” Spanish archaeologist Juan García Targa, co-director of the X’Baatún project, told EFE.
The Pre-Hispanic enclosure X’baatúnwhich means “place where water is collected”, is located in the Oxhuatz Natural Park, in the municipality of Tekal de Venegas.
The ceramist Carmen Varela, from the Universities of Cantabria and Universidad Europea del Atlántico de Santander, is the other director of the research project which began in 2018, with the authorization of the Mexican Council of Archeology of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), “although this year the researcher could not come”.
The collaborator of the local architectural heritage service of the Provincial Council of Barcelona said that the investigations they carry out focus on a complex housing structure with several rooms and many architectural elements of columns with a style similar to the Puuc, “which could have belonged to a personage of the Mayan elite” of X’baatún.
The other three surveys correspond to a smaller rectangular building, another structure that sits on top of a chultún (cave) and another, rectangular, that is visually transformed by the collapse.
They realize a dream in a Mayan city
For the second time, Spanish archaeologists Cristina Jiménez Fuentes and Xavier Sicart Chavarriaexperts in photogrammetry, participate in the application of new technologies in the X’baatún archaeological area dating back to 300 BC. AD, at the Terminal Late Classic (800 to 1000 AD).
According to information from the EFE, the drone flights make it possible to document the new structures discovered by the Mexican researchers Geiser Gerardo Martín Medina and Christian Hernández González, graduates of the Autonomous University of Yucatán, during the extensive visits to the place which has several Sacbes.
This year, the X’Baatún project was joined by the student from the Faculty of Anthropological Sciences of Uady Edwin Pool and the ceramist Lucía Quiñoneswho is conducting a survey of the inhabitants of Tekal de Venegas to learn more about the site, occupied by the current Mayas in the 20th century.
Spanish and Mexican archaeologists are happy because this year, thanks to visits and new technologies, they have discovered new buildings outside the Mayan city “of great importance”.
“As a starting point, we had a map prepared in 2006 by archaeologists Miguel Cobarrubias Reyna and José Estrada Faisal, members of the Izamal project,” he said.
Now, thanks to drone flightsresearchers have a more precise orientation of prehispanic buildings “And that allows us to know the typology, because there are large complex structures, such as palaces, and other small ritual-type structures.”
One of this year’s discoveries is a small religious-like structure that sits on top of a cavity with access to water, “which is very important for cultures, but even more so for the Maya.”
Archaeologist Cristina Jiménez, who holds a master’s degree in History and Anthropology in America from the Complutense University of Madrid, is fulfilling a dream in X’baatún: dedicating herself to research on Mayan culture by taking advantage of new technologies.
With archaeologist Xaviert Sicart, he documents the new structures found in the almost pristine archaeological site nestled in the heart of Yucatan.