Throughout history, there have been a huge number of civilizations on our planet, but the Maya is considered the most interesting of them. While many other peoples have disappeared due to natural disasters, the mystery of the death of the Mayan civilization still remains unknown. Nevertheless, scientists are constantly studying its history and recently they uncovered the secret of the 100-kilometer road, which was laid about 1300 years ago.
For the first time, its existence became known in the 1930s and it was believed that this ancient path was perfectly straight. However, upon further study, it turned out that this road has several turns and once upon a time connected several settlements. But why was this road built and why is it considered an engineering miracle?
The longest Mayan road
The new discovery of archaeologists was described in the scientific publication Journal of Archaeological Science. The so-called “Great White Road” over 100 kilometers long and about 8 meters wide, thousands of years ago connected one of the main Mayan cities of Koba with a small settlement of Yaksuna. According to researchers, the path was paved by order of the ruler Kaviel Ajo in order to conquer Yaksuna and subsequently resist the forces of the Chichen Itza empire. Previously, it was believed that this road was straight, but recently archaeologists have been able to study parts of the path hidden under the canopy of the jungle. It turned out that it was winding and affected other small settlements on the way to Yaksun. Most likely, this was necessary for strategic reasons.
Amazing structures of the Mayan civilization
Archaeologists consider the Great White Road to be an engineering miracle for several reasons. First, it was made of stone and covered with plaster, which, according to scientists, could glow in the dark. Secondly, the path was laid on a relief area with pits and ravines, but the surface of the road itself was perfectly flat. It is believed that the bumps in the road were filled with earth and limestone boulders. In general, the paved road is no less amazing than the monumental Mayan pyramids.
According to study leader Tracy Ardren, the paved road was like a beacon nestled among corn fields and fruit trees. Unfortunately, at the moment, most of the road is hidden under dense jungle. But thousands of years ago there were no large trees in this area, because civilization constantly needed wood to build structures and cut them down. In addition, the wood was required to burn limestone, which was subsequently mixed with water to make plaster.
Also, scientists found out that every 8 kilometers of the way, warriors and ordinary travelers could rest on special sites. As a rule, people could cover such a distance in about a day, so they could take several days to move between settlements. But thanks to the paved route, the warriors could cope with the task much faster and easier.
The results of the study can be considered another proof that the Mayan civilization had amazing knowledge. Scientists already know that they knew mathematics and astronomy well, and also knew how to carry out complex surgical operations.