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Excavating a Mayan ruin

Excavating a Mayan ruin

E900/0511

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Credit

PASQUALE SORRENTINO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY PASQUALE SORRENTINO / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption

Excavating a Mayan ruin. Archaeologist using a brush to reveal the fine details of an altar found near the ballcourt of the Palace of Taj Chan Ahk in Cancuen. Cancuen was a major trade city that was at its peak during the 7th century AD. The city, located in Pasion, El Peten, Guatemala, specialised in trading jade, pyrite and obsidian. Its strategic position on the Pasion River helped it dominate trade in the region. Taj Chan Ahk, one of the city's most powerful rulers, built his huge palace in 770 AD. Photographed in November 2004.

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