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Earthquake Destroys Pyramid, Then Unveils Ancient Temple For Aztec Rain God

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A deadly earthquake in September destroyed a pyramid in the Mexican state of Morelos. The unfortunate event nevertheless revealed another wonder that was hidden from the rest of the world after about the 1200 AD.  ( Melitón Tapia | INAH )

The 7.1 magnitude earthquake in Mexico in September 2017 has paved the way for the discovery of an ancient temple that dates back to the 1150-1200 AD.

The site has become a tourist attraction through these years. Archeologists have conducted excavation in the site from time to time since 1921.

Remains of two ancient pyramids that date back to the 13th century stand in an archeological site in Teopanzolco, Mexico. The pyramid to the north has a blue-painted temple on top that was dedicated to the Aztec rain god Tlάloc. The one to the south has a red-painted temple on top built for Aztec sun god Huitzilopochtli.

People have long been fascinated with the twin pyramids, not knowing that one of it holds another wonder underneath.

The Pyramid With Blue-Painted Temple

About six-and-a-half feet below the pyramid to the north, there lies another ancient temple. Archeologists said the ancient temple belonged to the Tlahuica culture, one of the Aztec people living in central Mexico.

They believed the newly discovered temple is also dedicated to the Aztec rain god Tlάloc as it was found underneath the pyramid dedicated to the same god. The unearthed temple has double façade walls adorned with elongated stones and stucco encased slabs, an architectural style similar with the blue-painted temple on top of the pyramid.

The unearthed structure would have measured 20 feet by 13 feet. Some interesting finds include an incense burner and ceramic shards.

Barbara Koniecza, one of the archeologists who made the discovery, said that it was part of the Tlahuica culture to build over older structures. This means that the newly discovered ancient temple was older than the pyramid and the blue-painted temple on top of it.

"There was no news, until now, of the existence of a substructure within the pyramidal structure. What we found could correspond to Teopanzolco's oldest temple," said Isabel Campos Goenaga, from Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History or INAH.

Now, the team suspects that the pyramid to the south, the one with the red-painted temple on top, has a counterpart ancient temple underneath it.

Earthquake Hit Mexico

Teopanzolco is situated in the Mexican state of Morelos, which is just within 45 miles south of Mexico City. The place was hit by the 7.1 magnitude earthquake on Sept. 19, 2017, and 74 people died in Morales alone. Elsewhere in the region, there were more than 200 fatalities and important infrastructures were destroyed.

"In spite of what the earthquake meant, it is necessary to be thankful that ... this natural phenomenon [revealed] this important structure," Goenaga said.

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