|Classic Maya collapse|
|Spanish conquest of the Maya|
Uxul is an ancient Maya settlement in the Campeche region of Mexico. It was at the pinnacle of its existence in the classical period (circa 250 to 900 A.D.), and was located in a densely populated area between the larger Maya cities of El Mirador to the south and Calakmul to the northeast. Uxul is a Mayan term meaning “at the end”, signifying its remoteness, however this was not the original name for the settlement, but a name coined by the two men who rediscovered it in 1934, Karl Ruppert and John H. Denison.
Uxul had trade connections that stretched as far south as modern-day Guatemala and to the Central Mexican Plateau. According to inscriptions, at approximately 630 A.D. Uxul was annexed under the rule of Calakmul, which was situated 26 kilometres away.
Digging was first concentrated on uncovering and mapping the old walls of the city, which led to the discovery of two very large water reservoirs, known as aguadas. These aguadas were particularly remarkable in that the bottoms were sealed intricately with ceramics, which would have been an epic undertaking of work for those involved, given that the pools are each as large as ten Olympic-sized swimming pools.
The researchers at the site had expressed a worry that any tombs potentially located at the site might have been already raided by grave robbers searching for jewellery or ceramics. These fears were alleviated during an extraordinary find in August 2012; excavating a palace in the ruined city, archaeologists uncovered the ancient tomb of a young prince, alongside a rare artefact. A concealed entrance to a small burial chamber was found in the royal palace, leading to the remains of a 25-year-old man and nine ceramic objects. On one of the cups found, it contained a simple message saying, “[This is] the cup of the young man/prince”. Another of the cups bore a date thought to be 711 A.D., giving some indication of when the monarch was alive.
- megalithic.co.uk (1 August 2012). "Uxul. - Ancient Village or Settlement in Mexico in Campeche". megalithic.co.uk.
- Dr. Iken Paap (26 August 2012). "Mayan pool in the rainforest". Eurekalert.org.
- Rachel Kaufman (30 August 2012). "Maya Prince's Tomb Found With Rare Drinking Vessel". National Geographic.