Archaeology Magazine Archive

A publication of the Archaeological Institute of America

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Top-Notch Tomb Volume 56 Number 5, September/October 2003
by Gary Feinman and Linda Nicholas


Twenty-five ceramic vessels dating to the latter part of the Classic period (ca. A.D. 500-600) were found in the tomb. (Linda Nicholas) [LARGER IMAGE]

A 1,500-year-old Zapotec tomb, one of the most elaborate from outside the regional center of Monte Albán, has been discovered by a team of Field Museum archaeologists on the remote hilltop terrace site of El Palmillo in Oaxaca, Mexico. Remains of three individuals were found, one of whom was interred in a seated position and wearing a single green stone bead, signs that the occupants of the tomb were of higher status compared to those who lived on lower terraces at the site. Bones of another individual, partly covered with red paint, were found in a wall niche. Six loose teeth, with stone plugs and other dental modifications, were discovered in front of the door and on the steps leading down to the tomb.

© 2003 by the Archaeological Institute of America