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  1. #21
    us
    Feb 2006
    New Hampshire - USA
    Fisher CZ21, Teknetics T2 & Minelab Sovereign GT
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    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Quote Originally Posted by piegrande
    You have good ideas.

    Another possibility, of course, is there were different functions in different places. For example the original ruins in the pictures above are placed such that I suspect its original function was some sort of lookout, or beacon tower, since their income depended upon not letting the merchant travelers get by. You can see by the two photos with views that they had a really good view of the area for quite a distance.

    I am accused good naturedly of "fomenting" an interest in the local history. Guilty as charged, your honor.

    My best friend, or his wife, depending upon who is listening, is an extremely intelligent woman, self-educated since her dad pulled her out of school in the early 70's after primary, telling her women don't need education. I assumed for a long time she was a university graduate, not a primary school graduate.

    She gets bored here in the village, because there are few intellectuals. in this town, and no other intellectual women. Thursday night, I pulled up this URL on her computer, and she used Google to translate the two threads I originated. She was so enthused and excited that she was bouncing all over the place.
    It's addicting isn't it

    I don't know any Spanish, but I've been interested in starting to learn it so maybe if she particpates in Spanish it will finally get me off my butt and out to take classes!
    "There is no getting away from a treasure that once fastens upon your mind" - Joseph Conrad (Nostromo)

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  3. #22
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    This is a smart woman. Over the last 12 years, visiting her husband and talking in English, she has developed the ability to follow the general topic under discussion, even if she is not sure exactly what she is saying.

    The first thing she learned was the obvious things we didn't want her to understand, gross male humor. She is not really a vulgar person, but she does have a somewhat risqu sense of humor. So, we have to watch our male humor when she is there.

    She is off to Leon, Guanajuato, her birthplace, for two weeks with an incredibly sweet 5 year old grand-daughter. The girls name is Lucea, like my favorite aunt who died many years ago. It will be a fast trip because the new Mexico City bypass, called Arco Norte, really cuts the time from Puebla to the north.

    This little girl was born with her heart "wired" wrong, something about the arteries reversed at the heart. This can be fatal. I know you hear about bad medical care in Mexico, but that is greatly exaggerated, except general family practice in the government hospitals, which is like something out of Dickens. But, if something is serious, they move them up the ladder to a really good hospital. There is a free government hospital in Mexico City which does surgery like she needed, and they took her there. Even when she was obviously in pain, she was sweet and loving. I am not clear if she will need more surgery when she is older, but at this time she just takes her baby aspirin once a day.

    Most little girls here are awfully sweet, but this one is off the charts. And, two weeks with Granny?

    When she heard they were going to a city called Leon (Lion) she was all enchanted. "Like the animals in the jungle?"

    I suppose she expects to see lions walking in the street.

    Gotta' go, cousin called and wants me to drive him to the next village to see the old, fragile uncle who needs something.

  4. #23
    mx
    Jul 2010
    11
    1 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Hey piegrande, this is a very interesting post, first time I read it.

    Near a house in Morelos owned by my family there are also lots of mounds with pyramids usually covered in mud. In fact it is close to Xochicalco which proves most of this sites were not alone but rather a chain or trail of villages linked together. Many of my friends had found them using satellite pictures of the area which showed perfectly square top of hills. This gave them curiosity and they went to inspect them physically and found pillar bases and rocks cut like bricks. I've seen walls just like the ones you have in your pictures which confirm it is indeed a precolonial construction.

    I do disagree with the idea of the UNAM giving much thought to it when you decide to publish it. Our experience when we went to the INAH to say we had found a pyramid whose base was larger than Teotihuacan was to say something like : "yeah... we have over 14,000 archeological sites in a waiting list of places to explore and BTW your site was reported already 2 times 20 and 35 years ago." So I wouldnt have high hopes from either UNAM or INAH but best luck with it.

    Sorry about my previous PM, didnt mean to offend you asking where were you located, just looking for interesting people in Mexico to go MD's in some of the spots in my region. I respect your privacy and you are free to keep your research to yourself.

  5. #24
    mx
    Nov 2004
    Alamos,Sonora,Mexico
    10,220
    849 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Hola zavoruka: Que clase nombre es este? What kind of a name is that No es Oirish? It's not Irish?

    Don Jose de La Mancha
    "I exist to live, not live to exist"

  6. #25
    mx
    Jul 2010
    11
    1 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Nope, my name comes deformed from a volcano in Nayarit

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceboruco_(volcano)

  7. #26
    us
    May 2006
    southern utah
    wander aimlessly in circles with camera in hand
    350
    60 times
    All Types Of Treasure Hunting

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Last night, I was showing these two postings to friends, who were fascinated by the pictures and the comments.

    When I told them that some theorize that the Aztecs took the treasure and the body to AZ or Utah, they laughed and laughed.

    They said it is a tonteria (foolishness) to imagine while many Aztecs were dying of various diseases, and a large death toll from the battles had decimated the city, that the hundreds of men needed for such a long expedition would spend many months on such a trip.

    There were too many good places, within his 'kingdom' to hide things, without taking on hostile tribes for many months, along with the logistics of finding food for that many for that long a time. Also. the Aztecs consistently claimed they had no idea where their home was, they had wandered a long time and had no idea where their origin was.
    interesting topic ,i say let them laugh . the first emperor , Montezuma 1 sent an expedition to find the homeland. I wonder what they found?[img][/img]
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    Talk sense to a fool and he calls you foolish. Euripides

  8. #27
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Hey, man, if you want to believe in a time when the city of Tenochtitlan was fighting for its life, they sent a large number of people on foot many thousands of miles round trip to bury a dead Emperor in a vague place, when there were plenty of good places within his own land, go for it. Those here who have studied significant history are not going to share that theory, but since no one knows, why not have your own theory?

    I am reading Cortes' letters again. In the time when Moctezuma was killed, the Aztecs still had considerable control for miles around. They pursued Cortes clear into Tlaxcala, and still controlled land all the way to Tepeaca. Cortes had to fight them in Tepeaca. So, concerns they would be taking his body or treasure through hostile territory to his own lands in the country are unlikely.

  9. #28
    Charter Member

    Dec 2005
    Arizona
    5,299
    522 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    piegrande,

    I have to agree with you completely.

    I would also suggest "History of the Conquest of New Spain" by Bernal Diaz.

    Between those two accounts, you will have a pretty thourough history of what took place......from a European perspective.

    Take care,

    Joe

  10. #29
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Oh, man!!!

    Yesterday, Independence Day, was the day. Last Sunday, the pastor's sister-in-law pointed me at her brother, and asked him when he could accompany me to the Tetele de Moctezuma. We discussed it, and agreed on Thursday at 2 pm.

    Later, my wife said, "They probably forgot Thursday is Independence Day, so they may not be able to go."

    Nope, when I showed up Thursday, they said, "Let's go." And, we did. We were out walking around the hills for around 3 hours. I don't do a lot of walking long distances in the warmer, sunnier months, so when I got home, I had a long nap.

    I have so much to say about what I saw, I hardly know where to start, and also have several pictures. Please be patient with me. This is going to take time to sort out.

    This is a major archaeological zone!

    It is also an unregistered, major archaeological and historical zone. That means the government archaeologists do not know of its existence, as far as we can tell.

    I call it a zone, because from the first place of interest to the Tomb of Moctezuma, which turned out to be the same one I told about before, my GPS showed 2.23 Km, or just under 1.25 miles. The first item of interests was assigned Waypoint 49 by my GPS, the last one, the Tomb of Moctezuma, was #56, which should explain why I say it's a zone.

    Along that distance, were thus 8 items of interest, from ancient burials to a large oven, of uncertain age, probably for 'cal', what they call quicklime here. Obviously, the ancient burials would seem to be the most important items, no?

    We left the village and after some time, my principal guide stopped and pointed at some rocks that seemed to be randomly placed, until he pointed them out. Then, it became obvious they made sort of a ring or circle.

    He said in the past, in a time of hunger, local men went out and dug there. In the center of that ring, they found four skeletons, only bones and some hair still remained. Also, old things which they sold to buy food for their families. They covered the bones again. They described the position of the bones to be the standard fetal position of buried bodies.

    As we walked on, he pointed out other places where they dug and found skeletons. So, it would seem as if a GPR would be needed here if a dig is ever done. It may well be a major ancient cemetery.

    Though one can never be sure, there is a high probability those bones were buried before roughly 1600. The LDS (Mormon) database shows the first document for the local church at 1609, with many as of 1620. It is unlikely burials in other cemeteries would have been done after the Catholic priests came here. Earliest possible date estimations would have to be done by scientific dating techniques.

    Then we came to a large construction, which they named as on oven. The limestone based rock, which is actually travertine marble, can be cooked, and becomes quicklime, they call it cal. It is used on construction, though not as strong as Portland Cement, also for 'stucco' finishes in houses, called revoco. Also, it is used to make tortillas. The corn is put in water, with cal, and boiled to loosen the skins of the kernels before grinding, because the skins do not make for good tortillas.

    We have no idea if this oven is more or less modern, that is, in the last two centuries, the Hispanic era, or ancient. As we have seen in the old house ruins, rock structures here can last to some degree, some hundreds of years. The oven looked usable if one dug out the debris which has filled it up. Pictures below, of course, as I sort them out. It is like ten or more feet across, and depth is unknown.

    There was an amphitheater looking excavation, though I must wonder if it might have been a place where they dug out marble for the oven. But, the locals said they believed it was a place where an old traditional game of ball was played. The picture will not show that shape, because of the tree growth.

    There was a large, raised area, though no visible construction seemed to be on it. They viewed this as a pyramid, though in no place but the Tomb itself was there any visible, clearly delineated construction as we think of when we use the word pyramid.

    Several times as we walked along, he stopped, reached down and handed me something which he had found. He said they were legs of cajetes. These are bowl like things with legs, and they are used for mixing or grinding foods or medicines. I cannot find cajetes in my dictionary, but molcajete is one name for such an item. My wife, though we have a power blender, still at times uses her old, traditional molcajete when cooking.

    He said they are clay, but are not 'cooked', which I think we would say baked. I don't know how they have lasted such a long time, but there they were on a hilltop lying in the dirt. I can only imagine what there might be, below the dirt.

    There was one thing which they said was part of a stone hatchet. I don't buy it, but what do I know.

    I will eventually have a photo of all five objects. I cannot speak for the age of the legs, except the ones for sale today are indeed baked clay.

    We came to an old building. They called it a hacienda. It is actually in good shape, except the roof is gone, and the door is gone, but the walls are in good shape. There is a natural bee hive in the end. The local history says this building was built in the early days of Porfirio Diaz, that is, the latter part of the 19th Century, and soldiers were stationed there, and in several similar buildings in the area to maintain order.

    Hey, I wouldn't mind buying that old house and fixing it up but it is on ejido land, that is, communal land, and cannot be sold without legal authorization.

    We kept walking, and I noticed we were pretty far from the village. They said we are going to the Tetele. It came over me. This is the same Tomb of Moctezuma I went to before. It was. To be sure, I ran a GPS distance to/from from the original coordinates, and it said .01 km, or roughly ten meters. Yep, same location.

    I had a question from a poster here about the construction of the visible wall in the ruin, and while I was there, I set out to answer it.

    This time they were more patient than my company last time, so I struggled my way up to the visible wall.

    My guide said it was made by using white powder, made from a certain type of rock, ground up, and placed wet between the rocks. There was one place where it is damaged, but in general with my touch I could not detect any difference between cement based mortar and this material. It is a solid wall, very strong, not at all fragile. Picture below when I get them processed.

    At one part of the ruin, they said it was a door. I cannot say it wasn't, but I can say it just looked to me like a hole or collapsed place.

    As I said, please have patience with me. This was such a surprise to encounter so many things, that it is going to take time to sort it all out. Pictures will be next as I get to them.

  11. #30
    us
    Feb 2006
    New Hampshire - USA
    Fisher CZ21, Teknetics T2 & Minelab Sovereign GT
    2,245
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    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Pretty amazing stuff!!! Can't wait to seem some photos, but make sure you don't give away too much information that might lead unsavory and/or opportunistic people to the area!
    "There is no getting away from a treasure that once fastens upon your mind" - Joseph Conrad (Nostromo)

  12. #31
    um
    Nemo me impune lacesset

    Jan 2005
    DAKOTA TERRITORY
    Tesoro Lobo Supertraq, (95%) Garrett Scorpion (5%)
    5,130
    660 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Quote Originally Posted by Cubfan64
    Pretty amazing stuff!!! Can't wait to seem some photos, but make sure you don't give away too much information that might lead unsavory and/or opportunistic people to the area!
    HEY now I can recognize myself when I read it; sheesh can't a poor claim jumper get a decent break?
    <Kidding of course, don't get specific about the actual locations on any public forum>
    SUPPORT THE BEEF INDUSTRY - EAT BEEF
    "We must find a way, or we will make one."--Hannibal Barca

  13. #32
    us
    Shadow Catcher

    Jul 2006
    Too close to the border
    They went that way >>>>>>>>>>>
    115
    13 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Howdy Piegrande,

    I've been waiting for an update, and you didn't disappoint! Can't wait for the pictures.

    Thanks again for sharing!

    Sincerely,

    Infosponge
    Only the shadow knows, but I know the shadow!

  14. #33
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    I am just back from a drive. I had gone to visit the family of a woman I met at the Independence Day Parade. She teaches English in Mexico City, and immediately wanted to practice her English.

    So, yesterday I went to her dad's house and talked to him about local history, and talked to her in English, for about three hours.

    He invited me to the monthly "cronistas" (historians) meeting today at noon. I got up this morning and decided to cut weeds with a scythe. Then, I remembered my Eng-sp dictionary, a really good one they don't sell in Mexico and took it to her before she went home.

    She was in the bath, and the dad reminded me of the meeting. Rats! I hadn't showered after cutting weeds, but I did volunteer to drive him to his meeting if he can get himself home later.

    On the way, he showed me a "pyramid" visible from the highway, a larger one. They are most likely an ancient building, and the local indigenous folks tended to pile buildings with dirt and rocks when they abandoned them. So, my guess is it is an old Mixteca or Popoloca or Zapoteca or whatever tribe, building.

    I left my GPS in the house because I expected to be right back from downtown. So, on the way back I did stop for a picture, but didn't get the coordinates. I am guessing a mile or two from the Tomb of M.

    He told me he had talked to many local people, and the local tradition very definitely says that mound is the Tomb of Moctezuma. He also says there is a big rock some distance away which local tradition also says is a marker to point to the tomb. He agreed to accompany me to see it when the ground dries. It has no letters; it is strictly local tradition that is what the rock is for.

    By the way, the woman is 36, not especially pretty, but not fat, is separated from her husband, which means he left her for another chick, and she has not yet divorced him. But, she is very simpatica, I forget how to say that in English. Anyway, I am a faithful married man, but she is extremely fascinating and pleasant to talk to. For those who don't know, that sort of woman is actually more dangerous than a gorgeous babe, because you don't think of her as dangerous until it is too late.


  15. #34
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    First, I want to show you a wall built in that time period. This is the wall I mentioned when I described the Tomb of Moctezuma, and someone asked how it was made. My guide said it used local rock, which is a travertine marble. (Travertine unlike real marble has not been exposed to high temperatures. Travertine is a result of action of water on limestone in certain conditions. These hills are filled with water, and that would be expected when travertine is present. At least so I have been told by locals. Other expert opinion welcome.)

    The mortar used is allegedly ground powder of tepetate, a very soft volcanic rock. I am not sure of this, because the wall is not soft at all, but hard as an, ahem, rock. I do not know how they made the mortar. I don't think tepetate powder mixes with water to make a mortar, but some claim the Pre-hispanic tribes burned limestone, and made cal (quicklime) which does make a good mortar. An oven below.

    In any case, there is rock with a very hard mortar, making for a hard, strong wall. I am not sure of thickness, which of course may vary, but am guessing between 4 to 10 inches, probably closer to the latter number. I will eventually find out. Some sort of moss or other growth tends to make the mortar dark.

    The important indigenous buildings of the local tribes would be of this type of construction, or very similar. Unimportant buildings were probably built of sticks and palm leaves, those buildings are still made by the poorest people.

    Second, I want to show you a mound. They call them pyramids, but my opinion is they were buildings of some sort, with the type of walls shown in the first photo, then when they were abandoned, the tribe dragged up dirt and rocks,, did something to the roofs, then covered them up, making a mound.

    And, excavated mounds I have seen in this area indeed have just that, walls of old buildings, not pyramids at all.

    This mound is visible from the highway at 40 mph.

    So, when the locals say there is a pyramid, it is almost certainly a mound which has covered something up.

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  16. #35
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Next, a boring looking piece of ground with random rocks.

    But, in the time of hunger, when they dug for food, they discovered a ring of rocks. The big rocks right behind my basket continue around in an irregular shaped 'ring', not totally visible in this photo. The basket is not quite centered in the ring. When they dug down, they found 4 skeletons, no more than bones, and some hair still visible. They took the cups or bowls and sold them for food, and covered the skeletons as best they could. As you can see, there is no sign of digging, so over the years, the damage has been covered up.

    The basket is 6 inches thick, and a foot the long way, and 14 inches from the bottom to the top of the handle, so with a ruler on the photo on your screen, if you wish you can measure the ring size. If I had time, I'd put a red circle on the ring, but I don't remember how to do that with my photo editor. If this is really important to someone, let me know and when I have time, I'll try again.


    The next photo, 1696, is just another mound, that they call a pyramid. That is rather large. I include it to give better examples of the wide range of items in this 'zone'.

    1699, another mound, likewise what is buried under there is not known.
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  17. #36
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    The next three pictures are of the oven (horno). It is assumed this was used to convert limestone/marble to cal (quicklime). They theorize this oven is early 20th Century, but that is just their guess, as far as I know. Based on the weathering of known old construction, I am not sure this construction is only 100 years old, but it may well be.

    First, the oven. 1693

    Second, the oven from farther away. 1695

    Then, the edge of the oven. 1694

    I did some digging and learned to make cal, the rock needs to be heated to around 825 degrees C. Wiki says the following temperatures are found in carbon based fire, by the color of the flame:

    Temperatures of flames by appearance

    The temperature of flames with carbon particles emitting light can be assessed by their color:

    * Red
    o Just visible: 525 C (977 F)
    o Dull: 700 C (1,292 F)
    o Cherry, dull: 800 C (1,470 F)
    o Cherry, full: 900 C (1,650 F)
    o Cherry, clear: 1,000 C (1,830 F)
    * Orange
    o Deep: 1,100 C (2,010 F)
    o Clear: 1,200 C (2,190 F)
    * White
    o Whitish: 1,300 C (2,370 F)
    o Bright: 1,400 C (2,550 F)
    o Dazzling: 1,500 C (2,730 F)

    Next time I go, I will look again and see if there are vent holes at the bottom to increase draft to increase the temperature.
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  18. #37
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    0.82 km from the Tomb, we encountered an old building, not Pre-hispanic. My guide says it was used by the soldiers of Porfirio Diaz, in his early days, which means later 1800's. It has a view of much of the mesa area below, for a great distance.

    A cousin told me later that it is believed it was originally a church, but I think that is a guess based on the shape.

    Then, a man who sold sheep used it. Then, the soldiers simply confiscated it as that is how things were done then.

    First, from the end. 1702

    Then a picture inside. 1704 The trees growing up block the view of the walls, but they are all there. Only the roof and the door itself is missing.
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  19. #38
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    I already posted pictures of the so-called Tomb of Moctezuma. The only new thing is a hole near the top, which my guide called a door. I do not know. It looks to me like a collapsed piece, or a hole. But, I will leave it as door, because he says so. If you disagree, you will get no argument from me. 1709

    Next, are some pieces of stuff, which everyone agrees are legs of cajetes, bowl like pots used to mix food or medicines. The fifth item in that photo they call a piece of stone hatchet, and I don't drink enough to see that, sorry. A cousin looked at it, and he thinks it's part of a broken cajete, which he thinks is made of a volcanic rock. 1718

    When I showed the legs/hatchet stuff to a cousin, he trotted into his bedroom, and came out with an arrowhead he dug up some time ago. This is what the ancients used, or maybe the Aztecs, who knows? Arrowhead experts can put labels on the type of construction of the head, but I cannot. 1719

    That is it for now, unless I think of something. Note there were several other "pyramid" mounds in that 2.23 km path, but they are pretty much the same. There was a bowl like excavation in one place, which they assumed was for that ball game the ancients played and the losers were killed. But the bowl simply was not big enough. Too many trees for a good picture.
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  20. #39
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    The historian is a retired school teacher, who loves history. So, he has many years of snooping for things like this. He insists local oral tradition consistently says exactly the same thing: That mound which was identified to me as the Tomb of Moctezuma is where he was buried.

    As I said earlier, I cannot say it is so, and I cannot say it is not so.

    It would be nice to know if other places have the same legend, wouldn't it?

    One reason this is a possibility is Moctezuma owned land out here. A member of the Moctezuma family still owned in the early 1700's, around 45,000 acres of land, which would be nearly 70 square miles, in this region. That was nearly 200 years after Moctezuma died, with plenty of divisions over the centuries.

    Another reason is going other directions involved entering enemy territory.

    I have been re-reading the letters of Cortes, and the Aztecs still controlled this part of the nation, so it would have been an easy two day trip for strong slaves.

    I say again, that though I do not at all believe he was buried 1,000 miles away, anyone who thinks so is going to receive no criticism from me.

  21. #40
    mx
    May 2010
    541
    67 times

    Re: Moctezuma's Tomb

    Another thought. I still believe the original purpose of that ruin was an observation tower for the Indian tribe a few miles away. It is too obvious. That does not mean they did not bury him in there then covered it up. Until somebody digs, we will never know.

 

 
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