The road is 1,300 years old and is the longest ever built by this civilization. It is 8 meters wide and shone at night because it was covered in bright white plaster.
Scientists from the University of Miami certified, thanks to digital technology, a 100 km “highway” that connected the different points of the Mayan empire in the Yucatan peninsula.
The highway is 100 kilometers long, it was built 13 centuries ago and linked the cities of Yaxuná and Cobá.
Over 8,000 tree-covered buildings and pyramids of all kinds of different sizes were identified along the 100 km route (University of Miami).
Archaeologists from the University of Miami used laser technology to discover this highway that is now covered by thick vegetation. In low-flying aircraft, they fired rapid pulses of laser light at a surface and then measured the amount of time it took for each pulse to recover. Differences in bounce times and wavelengths were used to create 3D digital maps of hidden surface structures.
The investigation revealed that it is not a straight path, as it was supposed to, but it winds its way to connect towns and cities. The route was built by K’awiil Ajaw, a warrior queen from the Mayan city of Cobá, around 680 BC. C. She wanted to create a way for her armies to travel to Yaxuná to conquer it and confront the dominant Chichén Itza.
The scientists published their study in the Journal of Archaeological Science, and there they report that they identified more than 8,000 buildings and pyramids of all kinds covered with trees of different sizes along the 100 km of the route. The study also confirmed that the path is 8 meters wide.
The route was built by K’awiil Ajaw, a warrior queen from the Mayan city of Coba, around 680 BC. C.
The route was not made in a straight line to incorporate pre-existing towns and cities between Coba and Yaxuna, a smaller and older city in the middle of the peninsula. However, this city built a pyramid three times bigger and centuries before the most famous one in Chichén Itza, about 25 kilometers away.
The warrior queen who built the route, K’awiil Ajaw, is depicted with stone sculptures where she is seen trampling her bound captive rivals.
Excavation will now proceed along the “Great White Road” which is presumed to have glowed even in the dead of night.
Some of the inscriptions found in a monument along the route.
The road is an engineering marvel. Although built on undulating terrain, the path is flat, made of huge limestone boulders, and the surface covered in bright white plaster. The same formula that the Romans used for concrete in the third century BC.
The scientific authors of the research say: “It would have been a beacon through the dense green of the cornfields and fruit trees. All the jungle we see today was not there in the past because the Mayans cleared these areas. They needed wood to build their homes. And now that we know the area was densely occupied, we know they needed a lot of wood. Because they also needed it to burn limestone and build the longest road in the Mayan world 13 centuries ago. “
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