A carved monolith uncovered in Mexico may display that the Olmec world was much more widespread than thought, or that another culture thrived together it 3,000 year ago.

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The Tamtoc archaeological site, northeast the Mexico City, is being opened up to the public this week.San luis Potosi S.G.
A sculpted monolith uncovered in Mexico may show that the Olmec civilization, among the oldest in the Americas, was more widespread than assumed or the another society thrived alongside it 3,000 years ago.

Findings in ~ the freshly excavated Tamtoc historical site in the north-central state of san Luis Potosi might prompt scholar to rethink a watch of Mesoamerican background that stop its earliest peoples were based in the southern of Mexico.

"It is a very relevant indicator of one Olmec penetration much to the north, or of the visibility of a new group co-existing through the Olmecs," said excavator Guillermo Ahuja, who led a government team excavating the site for the past five years.

Tamtoc, located around 550 mile (885 kilometers) northeast the Mexico City, was opened up to the public in May. Specialists including linguists, historians, ethnographers and also others space studying result from the site to check their origins.

The Olmecs are taken into consideration the mother society of pre-Hispanic Mexico. Ruins of Olmec centers believed to have grew as early on as 1200 B.C. Have actually been discovered in the Gulf coast states that Veracruz and also Tabasco, with just scattered artifacts found elsewhere.

Workers restoring a canal in ~ the website stumbled top top the rock monolith. It appears to stand for a lunar calendar and also contains three person figures and also other icons in relief.

At 25 feet (7.6 meters) long, 13 feet (4 meters) high, 16 inch (40 centimeters) thick and weighing an ext than 30 tons, that may date to as early as 900 B.C., Ahuja said.

Experts will shot to interpret the icons to learn more about the artists and their culture. "They are new symbols in Mesoamerica," Ahuja said.

At Tamtoc, scientists found evidence of an advanced civilization, with a hydraulic system, canals and also other technology, making it the oldest and also most advanced center that its time found in what later came to be Huasteco Indian region, Ahuja said.

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"It is the an initial and just Huasteco City us know," that said.

The 330-acre (133-hectare) facility has 3 plazas and more than 70 buildings and may suggest that the Olmecs migrated northward and also mingled with various other peoples there, he said.