02 September 2016 0 Comments A+ A-

Farmer Helped A Looter Who Fell In A Cave And Discovered Something Horrifying

An underworld network of caves in Belize may have been used to traffic Mayan children as young as six for sacrifice.
Teeth discovered among the thousands of human bones lying in the so-called Midnight Terror Cave have been found to all belong to children aged between six and 14.

And chemical analysis suggests they were not originally from the Cayo District, where the cave is located, meaning they may have been brought to the area en masse.

An underworld network of caves in Belize may have been used to traffic Mayan children as young as six for sacrifice. Teeth discovered among the thousands of human bones (shown) lying in the Midnight Terror Cave have been found to all belong to children aged between six and 14 who weren’t originally from the region
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Midnight Terror Cave is located to the south of Belmopan near the Mennonite Community of Springfield in the Cayo District of Belize.

It was discovered in 2006 and reported to the Institute of Anthropology due to the large number of human remains found in the cave.

The California State University then completed a three-year survey of the cave, which ended in 2010.

Student Samantha Lorenz is part of a team of experts studying the chemical composition of these remains, including the teeth, in an attempt to learn more about who they belonged to.

She told Ben Marks at Collector’s Weekly: ‘No one’s from Belize, so that means we have this population of children that was brought in from somewhere else for the purpose of sacrifice.

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Midnight Terror Cave is located to the south of Belmopan near the Mennonite Community of Springfield in the Cayo District of Belize (marked). It was discovered in 2006 and reported to the Institute of Anthropology due to the large number of human remains found in the cave

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Since 2007 researchers including Dr Jaime Awe and Institute of Archaeology, Belize, Dr James Brady from California State University and C.L Kieffer now a PhD Student at the University of New Mexico have presented evidence that dental records and marks on the remains (example pictured) were indicative of human sacrifice

‘And because there are so many of them all coming from the same region, then you have to look at whether there was a trade network, essentially a human-trafficking network, in children.’

In 2007, an episode of the Bone Detective introduced the idea of the cave being used for human sacrifice following research by Dr Jaime Awe and the Institute of Archaeology, Belize.

The first professional presentation of the were made at the 2009 Annual Meeting Society for American Archaeology in Atlanta, Georgia.

Researcher Crystal L.Kieffer discussed the findings further in her 2010 paper Determining Status of Ancient Maya from Looted and Sacrificial Contexts.

Ms Kieffer is now a PhD Student in archaeology at the Department of Anthropology, University of New Mexico.

By studying dental pathology and modification she concluded that there was evidence to suggest ‘the presence of both elite and commoners at Midnight Terror Cave.’

She added that these it is not clear whether elites were local or were outsiders captured in battle.

‘Midnight Terror Cave is similar to other sacrificial contexts within the Maya area that have adults and children as well as males and females.’

Ms Kieffer then co-authored a paper in 2012 with Dr James Brady, a professor of anthropology at California State University.
In their paper, ‘Preliminary observations on the investigation of Midnight Terror Cave, Belize,’ they reference the fact that evidence of human traffic has been noted by other cave archaeologists ‘in the form of trails of concave compacted soil that are still clearly visible a millennium after the abandonment of the site.’

Via Dailymail

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