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Archaeologists discover dozens of ancient towns in Amazon forest

The Brazilian rain forest, a wilderness in which no man can survive? Certainly not. British archeologists discovered ancient settlements in which hundreds of years ago, hundreds of thousands of people stayed.

Researchers from the university of Exeter, England, studied the Tapajósbassin, in the Brazilian province of Mato Grosso, one of the most sparsely populated provinces of the South American country. They used this imagery, by which they went in search of ancient traces of occupation.

To their astonishment, discovered by the scientists that the rainforest, in a spot that used to totally not impenetrable wilderness, but just a place that ever broeide of human activity. The images were 81 sites identified, where hundreds of years ago people lived, ranging from villages of less than thirty feet wide in a city of nineteen acres.

‘Of course We knew already that the rainforest is not a pristine place where never before people were settled, ” says Jonas Gregorio de Souza of the university of Exeter at The Guardian. “The big question remains, however, how people in the pre-Colombian era have spread.’

Ceramics

De Souza and his colleagues focused during the study of the satellite imagery in places that influenced lay people, including by the construction of roads, fortifications and earthen foundations of houses. In total identified them as 81 archaeological sites.

Then dropped his team down to 24 of those sites to also field research to be carried out. “From all the studies that we on the spot have done, it turned out definitely that we are on the old settlements of people were encountered’, continues De Souza.

On one of the sites were pieces of charcoal and ceramics were found that date from between the years 1410 and 1460. The most activity in the areas proved to have taken place between the years 1250 and 1500.

Diseases

De Souza: ‘The discoveries are so interesting because we have a lot of finds have been done in the vicinity of small creeks, which the theory confirms that people hundreds of years ago, not only in the area of large, fertile river valleys, have established.’

The research team concludes from its findings that the southern part of the Amazon, a place of shelter for half a million to a million inhabitants. “The population was only thinned out after the arrival of the Europeans, who in their wake all the diseases brought with them. We know that diseases are much more quickly spread than people, so it may even be that the residents have suffered from European diseases, even before European explorers, this area had visited.’

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