Underground world in Teotihuacán: Mexican archaeologists map a cave buried 10 meters deep under the Pyramid of the Moon.
They also found access tunnels to that cave and they realized that the pyramid was built on the basis of that cave, being the first structure to be built in Teotihuacán. This latest study confirms that the three pyramids have a similar network of tunnels and caverns below that represent the underworld.
This was an investigation carried out by archaeologists from the National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico (INAH) and geologists from the Institute of Geophysics of UNAM (National Autonomous University of Mexico). The current study confirms findings from 2017 and 2018.
Cave and tunnels under the Pyramid of the Moon
Teotihuacán is located in the Valley of Mexico and was built by an unknown civilization. It was a major city for many years and had a complicated history. So much of its story has yet to be discovered. It was one of the largest in the Americas during the ancient days. At that time, it was home to at least 125,000 people.
Teotihuacán’s three main pyramids were temples used for ceremonies dedicated to pre-Columbian gods. The Pyramid of the Sun is the main one, at 65 meters high, while the Pyramid of the Moon is the second highest, at 43 meters. This second pyramid is thought to have been built on top of seven layers of structures, between AD 100 and AD 450.
The cavity discovered under the Pyramid of the Moon is 15 meters in diameter and includes a tunnel located 8 meters deep. But it is very possible that there are more tunnels. The investigative techniques were non-invasive geophysics (ANT and ERT), which managed to detect the vacuum of the underground cavity.
Geophysicists identified this cave in 2017, through an Electrical Resistivity Tomography (ERT). Previous studies also revealed the presence of other man-made tunnels under the Pyramid of the Moon, as well as passageways and caves under the Pyramid of the Sun and the Pyramid of the Feathered Serpent.
This cave was used as the nucleus for all of Teotihuacán
For 30 years, it has been believed that this cave “of the Moon” is natural and that its pre-Columbian architects must have used this underground world to lay the foundation, trace and build the entire city of Teotihuacán. The cave was the starting point.
Another aspect that points to this urban project is in building 1, the first base part of the Pyramid of the Moon, and “the oldest known Teotihuacán monument.” It was built between 100 BC. and 50 BC, being prior to all other buildings in the city.
That first stage of construction began at the front of the pyramid, and it was expanded, until it formed the current structure and covered the entire underground cave. Additionally, the Pyramid of the Moon is located on the central line of Teotihuacán, at the end of the extensive Avenue of the Dead (Calzada de los Muertos), the backbone of the entire city… There we note its importance.
The meaning of the three pyramids of Teotihuacán is mysterious, but this new discovery of the cave under the Pyramid of the Moon completes the trilogy of underground passages in the three buildings. That is why it is theorized that the construction culture wanted to emulate the mythological underworld under the Earth and worship the world of the dead.