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'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery 

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Old 12-22-2012, 06:09 AM
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'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

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Human skulls deliberately warped into strange, alien-like shapes have been unearthed in a 1,000-year-old cemetery in Mexico, researchers say.

The practice of deforming skulls of children as they grew was common in Central America, and these findings suggest the tradition spread farther north than had been thought, scientists added.

The cemetery was discovered by residents of the small Mexican village of Onavas in 1999 as they were building an irrigation canal. It is the first pre-Hispanic cemetery found in the northern Mexican state of Sonora.

The site, referred to as El Cementerio, contained the remains of 25 human burials. Thirteen of them had deformed skulls, which were elongate and pointy at the back, and five had mutilated teeth.

Dental mutilation involves filing or grinding teeth into odd shapes, while cranial deformation involves distorting the normal growth of a child's skull by applying force — for example, by using cloths to bind wooden boards against their heads.

"Cranial deformation has been used by different societies in the world as a ritual practice, or for distinction of status within a group or to distinguish between social groups," said researcher Cristina García Moreno, an archaeologist at Arizona State University. "The reason why these individuals at El Cementerio deformed their skulls is still unknown."

"The most common comment I've read from people that see the pictures of cranial deformation has been that they think that those people were 'aliens,'" García added. "I could say that some say that as a joke, but the interesting thing is that some do think so. Obviously we are talking about human beings, not of aliens."

Of the 25 burials, 17 were children between 5 months and 16 years of age. The high number of children seen at the site could suggest inept cranial deformation killed them due to excessive force against the skull. The children had no signs of disease that caused their deaths.

Although cranial deformation and dental mutilation were common features among the pre-Hispanic populations of Mesoamerica and western Mexico, scientists had not seen either practice in Sonora or the American Southwest, which share a common pre-Hispanic culture. The researchers suggest the people at El Cementerio had been influenced by recent migrants from the south.

"The most important implication would be to extend the northern boundary of the Mesoamerican influence," García told LiveScience.

A number of skeletons also were found with earrings, nose rings, bracelets, pendants and necklaces made from seashells and snails from the Gulf of California. One person was buried with a turtle shell on the chest. It remains uncertain why some of these people were buried with ornaments while others were not, or — another mystery — why only one of the 25 skeletons was female.

During the next field season, the researchers aim to determine the cemetery's total size and hope to find more burials to get a clearer idea of the society's burial customs. "With new information, we also hope to determine whether there was any interaction between these and Mesoamerican societies — how it was and when it happened," they said.

García and her colleagues completed their analysis of the skeletal remains in November. They plan to submit their research to either the journal American Antiquity or the journal Latin American Antiquity.

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The first evidence of deforming skulls was found in the northern Mexican state of Sonora when residents were digging an irrigation canal in 1999.

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Many of the burials at the site were healthy children, suggesting the process of cranial deformation may have been inept and dangerous.

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Some of the skeletons were found with various pieces of jewelry.

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One of the burials included a turtle shell on the individual's chest.

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An up-close image of the turtle shell in the burial.

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It is common for people to wonder if skeletons such as these are alien rather than human.

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The pre-Hispanic cemetery is located 300 metres from the village of Onavas, Sonora.

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Artificial skull deformation is known to have been practiced by the Chinookan tribes of the U.S. Northwest and the Choctaw of the U.S. Southeast. Shown here, a painting by Paul Kane, showing a Chinookan child in the process of having its head flattened, and an adult after the process.

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A deformed skull dating to between 200 B.C. and 100 B.C. and belonging to an individual of the Nazca culture, which flourished along the Peruvian coast.

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http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/50270582...ience-science/
http://www.livescience.com/25734-ali...ng-mexico.html
http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/headline...und-in-mexico/

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Old 12-22-2012, 08:25 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

I heard about the culture before. Interesting find. With todays genetics we can probably find out what they looked like during the time. Probably compare earlier hominins.

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Old 12-22-2012, 11:35 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

people can still have skulls like that these days.. with even just fucked up baby sleeping positions.

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Old 12-22-2012, 08:10 PM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

Great find

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Old 12-23-2012, 08:18 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

Awesome find

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Old 12-23-2012, 05:21 PM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

wonder if these skull modification were done only for status or if this was a form of worship or a demonstration of piety to their gods ?

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Old 12-27-2012, 01:19 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

I wonder what they used for asprin; what ever they used, they would have used alot of it.

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Old 12-27-2012, 01:31 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

With a head like that I know these fuckers dreamed in IMAX 3D

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Old 12-29-2012, 12:21 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

I love how whenever skulls shaped by skull binding are found, everyone is automatically like


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Old 12-30-2012, 12:43 AM
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Re: 'Alien-Like' Skulls Are Unearthed in 1,000-year-old Cemetery

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Originally Posted by AmericanIllusions View Post
With a head like that I know these fuckers dreamed in IMAX 3D
Doesn't everyone?

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