07:22 GMT +313 November 2019
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    Tenochtitlan

    Unique Aztec Water Tunnel Discovered Under the Streets in Centre of Mexican Capital - Photos

    CC BY-SA 2.0 / marco ruiz / ciudadela Tenochtitlan
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    Scientists believe that the tunnel, which is adorned with rock carvings, was built during the reign of Emperor Montezuma I who ruled from 1440 till 1469 and greatly contributed to the Aztec Empire.

    Mexican archaeologists have recently made a startling discovery. Right under the busy streets of the Mexican capital they found an underground water tunnel that dates back to the 15th century. Local media report that scientists found 11 carved images in the almost 8 metre tunnel as well as the remnants of a wooden gate and parts of statues, all of which has immense archaeological value.

    ​Raul Garcia Chavez, the project's coordinator, said his team has been working at the site since 2004. That year they launched a conservation project at Calzada de San Cristobal, a site with an infrastructure that according to ecclesiastic Juan de Torquemada, was built by indigenous people.

    The images discovered in the tunnel are thought to depict the god Tlaloc, who is a member of the Aztec pantheon of gods. Being the god of fertility, rain, and water, Tlaloc was perceived as a good god that Aztecs prayed to have a bountiful harvest, but they also feared Tlaloc for his ability to send hail and thunderstorms.

    The excavation also led to the discovery of dozens of important items. Archaeologists found objects made of glass, porcelain and building materials that date back to the formative stage of the Americas’ between 900 B.C. and 150 A.D.

    Aztecs that lived on the territory of today’s Mexico from the beginning of the 14th century until the end of the 16th century, had built a strong infrastructure that provided a supply of water and prevented Tenochtitlan from flooding. Today, residents of Mexico City face a huge water crisis with natural reserves being emptied at a faster rate than they are filled. Tainted water is the leading cause of death in children between the ages of 1-5 in Mexico.

    Tags:
    Mexico City, aztec, Mexico, archaeology
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