Treasure Trove of Ancient Mayan Cave Paintings Found in Mexico

While exploring the southeastern lands in Mexico, a team of archaeologists led by Sergio Grosjean Abimerhi discovered an impressive cave with Mayan cave paintings, which are described as the “most important” cave paintings ever found in the Yucatan peninsula.

Located in the thick jungle of the state of Yucatan, and 12 meters below the surface, the cave hides a 15-meter-long boulder featuring drawings that stand out for their surprising diversity, as well as a small cenote.

Despite not being the only cave with ancient Maya glyphs, the newly found archaeological site is of great importance.

Maya Cave Paintings
Seen in this image is a detail of what experts claim could be the most important ancient Mayan cave paintings in the Yucatan Peninsula, Image Credit: EFE-EPA/Sergio Grosjean Abimerhi

“It’s not the only cave with paintings in Yucatán but it is the most important because they have many elements: birds, mammals, a cross, geometric figures, human forms and among those that of a warrior as well as [prints made with] the front and back of hands,” Grosjean said.

Furthermore, Grosjean also noted that they have colors made with “a wide range of pigments and materials derived from Mother Earth, such as k’ankab (red or yellow earth).”

According to experts, the cave paintings, like those found in other parts of Yucatan, “show the high degree of evolution of the Mayan culture.”

“At the moment, we can’t reveal the exact location [of the cave] because unfortunately in Yucatán, the looters and vandals are one step ahead of us,” Grosjean said.

However, this could change in the enar future. If permissions are granted by Mexican authorities, the archeological site could soon be open to the public.

“It can’t remain hidden… It should be opened [to the public] with all the security regulations that a place with so much cultural value must have,” Grosjean said before he fired a broadside at Mexican authorities.

“Yucatán is rich culturally speaking, but unfortunately there is no interest from the three levels of government. They don’t value or respect the sacred Mayan sites, they’ve turned some of them into balnearios [water parks],” Grosjean explained, referring to cenotes or sinkholes, which Mayans considered to be entrances to the underworld.

Despite the fact that experts beleive the cave paintigns are extemly old., resaehcers have still not managed to determine their approximatea age, since they were possibly made at different times. However, researchers assure that these ancestral paintings will help better understand the customs of the Mayans, and their art.

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