New People of the Earth

Mexican archaeologist Carlos Hernández believes artifacts found 15 years ago are products of a previously unidentified culture that also constructed a nearby stepped pyramid:

Based on the artifacts’ discovery near the pyramid, “it is likely that the Huapalcalco pyramid has been built by people from this new culture,” Hernández said.

Thomas Charlton, an archaeologist at University of Iowa, has worked in the state of Hidalgo.

He said that ample evidence—including the new artifacts—links a new pre-Hispanic culture to the Huapalcalco pyramid.

“It’s a reasonable hypothesis [that] near the Valley of Tulancingo, there is a site that looks like it existed between the fall of the Teotihuacan and the beginning of the Tula [Toltec],” Charlton added.

“We know that there’s an occupation [from this time] near Tulancingo.

“After the Teotihuacan, there were all sorts of smaller states throughout Mexico. It’s part of the cycle after the fall of an empire.”

That can’t be right. Didn’t Brian Fagan, in People of the Earth (10th ed., 2001), summarize the discovery of the Assyrian, Sumerian, and other civilizations, then comment: “Today, there are no more unknown civilizations to be unearthed”?

Photo credit Carlos Hernández Reyes via National Geographic.