In a groundbreaking discovery, archaeologists have found the longest flooded Underwater Cave in Eastern Mexico. The discovery was made by a group of divers from Gran Acuifero Maya (GAM). The cave, which is 347-km (216-mile) long, was found near the beach resort of Tulum on the Yucatan Peninsula. Moreover, according to reports, the cave’s average depth is 20 Km. The finding will now escalate archaeologists efforts to get necessary insights about the Mayan Civilisation.
This recent discovery has taken over the previous record of Ox Bel Ha system in Quintana Roo for being the longest underwater passage in the world. The cave system of OX Bel Ha measures 270.2 kilometers.
MEMBERS OF THE GAM PROJECT LOCATE THE LARGEST UNDERWATER CAVE
Gran Acuifero Maya (GAM) director and underwater archaeologist Guillermo de Anda said , “It (the discovery) allows us to appreciate much more clearly how the rituals, the pilgrimage sites and ultimately the great pre-Hispanic settlements that we know emerged.”
Researchers from Gran Acuifero Maya (GAM) had been exploring and brainstorming for months, before they found that two underwater caverns, Sac Actun (263 Km) and Dos Ojos (83 Km), were connected to each other. According to the rules of caving, in case of interconnected caves, the larger cave absorbs the smaller cave. Therefore, Sac Actun cave now absorbs Dos Ojos cave.
The Gran Acuifero Maya (GAM) project aims to protect and promote the water resources and biodiversity of the Yucatan Peninsula. Its further objective is to encourage sustainable development.
Researcher from the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Guillermo de Anda added that the discovery is “the most important underwater archaeological site in the world and home to hundreds of preserved secrets.”
He further added that the cave ‘contains evidence of the first American civilisations, extinct fauna and Mayan culture’. He further explained that it took him and his team almost 14 years to study and uncover the large cave network.
Watch what more they found in the video :
TOWARDS UNVEILING THE MYSTERY & HISTORY OF MAYAN CIVILISATION
It is believed that Mayans had developed incredibly sophisticated system in areas related to mathematics, calendar making, astronomy, agriculture and architecture. Moreover, the Mayans had developed a structured language for communication, which is one of the World’s first written languages. Further, the civilisation had an extensive knowledge about the cosmos and planetary movement. They could successfully predict solar eclipse. Ahead of their time, Mayans had also developed elaborate cities.
The decline of a civilisation that excelled in almost every area is, still, a mystery. While a few believe that their engagement in war with the neighbouring cities led to their decline, others believe that a sudden environmental change such as draught or exhaustion of resources is what took a toll on the civilisation.
The discovery of the cave is, therefore, an achievement in itself. It is believed that the cave holds ancient Mayan artefacts, remains of a few extinct plant species, ceramics and Mayan graves. The finding will act as a portal for knowing about the civilisation.
Previously, archaeologists had excavated a tomb in western Belize, along with various hieroglyphic panels. the tomb is said to have belonged to the ‘Snake Dynasty’. Furthermore, a ‘Centipede Dynasty’ Tomb was discovered last year in Guatemala.