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  • Lower jaw bone of male likely from the Bato culture found in Las Brisas de Santo Domingo, Chile. Dec. 3, 2018.

    Lower jaw bone of male likely from the Bato culture found in Las Brisas de Santo Domingo, Chile. Dec. 3, 2018. | Photo: Jose Luis Brito Montero, Director of the Museum of Natural History of San Antonio

Published 5 December 2018

Scientists from Chile's Council of National Monuments say a male jaw bone and femur were found that likely belonged to the pre-Colombian Bato culture.

Human remains of a male were found along Chile’s coast that natural history scientists there say are from the Bato culture, a pre-Colombian society that inhabited the Santo Domingo area about 1,200 years ago.

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Former director of Chile’s Council of National Monuments and current director of the Museum of Natural History of San Antonio Jose Luis Brito, told local media on Wednesday that a number of human bones, among them a femur and a lower jaw bone, were found in the Brisas de Santo Domingo resort in the Chilean coastal community of the same name. They were unearthed by construction workers digging on premises.

Brito says the number and precise age of the bones have yet to be determined, but he hypothesized they are from the Bato culture, an Indigenous society that was one of the first in what is now Chile to produce pottery and ceramics. The scientist says the remains resemble those found in the same area in the late 1990s of the Bato culture.

"They are very close (in resemblance) to previous findings made in the 90s, early 2000 ... when nearly 30 skeletons of the Bato culture were found in the same area."

Employees at the Brisas resort initially found the bones and alerted police who worked with the public prosecutor's office to investigate the findings that so far include a femur and a lower jaw of a man. Scientists say they haven’t yet determined at what age the man died.

The remains will now be analyzed by specialists at the Council of National Monuments in order to determine their precise origin, age, and final resting place. Construction workers at Las Brisas were ordered to stop working so that archeologists can look for additional artifacts.

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