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Ancient Model of The Universe Discovered in Mexico

The people of ancient Mexico may not have had the powerful telescopes that we have access to today, but that didn't stop them depicting the vastness of the Universe all the same, as a new archaeological discovery at the Nahualac site near Mexico City shows.

This particular miniature model of space doesn't feature planets or stars though – instead it's thought to show the monster Cipactli splitting heaven and Earth and bringing life into being, one of the traditional myths of the Aztec people.

In fact, experts from Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) say the stone structure, discovered under a lagoon, was specially designed to give the impression that the map carving was floating on the surface of the water rather than lying on the pond bed – just as Cipactli would have done.

According to some Mesoamerican creation myths, Cipactli – part crocodile, part fish, part frog – was brought into life by the gods, floating across the primaeval waters, and creating Earth from its body. Some tales say Cipactli was torn apart to form the Universe.

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