Over the course of history, cities rise and cities fall but from time to time, we lose sight of what actually happened. When a civilization disappears without a trace, it might fall subject to collective forgetting, only resurfacing years later. Such was the case for the lost city of Teotihuacan in Mexico. Once the center of the ancient world, the city fell by the wayside, going overlooked for centuries. It is only in recent years that the place has even resurfaced and now, experts believe they might be closer to cracking the mystery of the long lost civilization.
Once taking its throne in central Mexico, Teotihuacan was a product of pre-Hispanic history, flooded with ancient cultures. Housing as many as 200,000 people at the time, the city was an international hub, and one of the most advanced cities of its kind. Citizens were ordered into “barrios”, which consisted of neat residential complexes fitted out with all the amenities you could imagine. The housing units stood close to the nearby pyramids, which loomed over the urbanscape.
While the majority of Teotihuacan’s population were everyday citizens, there were leaders who kept the place in order. Although the city’s ruling structure once eluded contemporary experts, archaeologists have since uncovered the mystery of the ancient hierarchy. Research suggests that the city was ruled over by four main houses who each took different responsibilities on. Early digs have recently shone the light on the city’s structure, after having stumbled across an entire system of buried artifacts from the ancient time.
Embarking on an historic dig, Mexican archaeologist Sergio Gómez chanced upon a 330 feet passageway buried below the ground that led directly into the heart of the ancient city. Over the course of a number of years, Gómez unearthed treasure after treasure, gaining important insight into the ancient practices of Teotihuacan. Artwork, carved figures and everyday items informed the archaeologists on what life was like for the civilization, how their city ran and what hierarchical structures they might have used. Four figurines in a final chamber suggested the idea of a four-ruler system in place, suggesting there was more scared treasure to be unearthed.
Thanks to the dig, we now know more about Teotihuacan than ever before. Lavish offerings suggested a spiritual or religious society, shining a light on the beliefs of the people. While the Teotihuacan might have been lost for a stretch of time, it will now never be forgotten, thanks to the work of Sergio Gómez.