Source: Before It’s News
A teenager from Quebec has discovered an ancient Mayan city without leaving his province’s borders.
William Gadoury is a 15-year-old student from Saint-Jean-de-Matha in Lanaudière, Quebec. The precocious teen has been fascinated by all things Mayan for several years, devouring any information he could find on the topic.
During his research, Gadoury examined 22 Mayan constellations and discovered that if he projected those constellations onto a map, the shapes corresponded perfectly with the locations of 117 Mayan cities. Incredibly, the 15-year-old was the first person to establish this important correlation, reported the Journal de Montreal over the weekend.
Then Gadoury took it one step further. He examined a twenty-third constellation which contained three stars, yet only two corresponded to known cities.
Gadoury’s hypothesis? There had to be a city in the place where that third star fell on the map.
Satellite images later confirmed that, indeed, geometric shapes visible from above imply that an ancient city with a large pyramid and thirty buildings stands exactly where Gadoury said they would be. If the find is confirmed, it would be the fourth largest Mayan city in existence.
“I didn’t understand why the Maya built their cities far away from rivers, in remote areas, or in the mountains,” Gadoury told the Journal de Montreal, explaining how he developed his theory.
Once Gadoury had established where he thought the city should be, the young man reached out to the Canadian Space Agency where staff was able to obtain satellites through NASA and JAXA, the Japanese space agency.
Scientists across the board have been blown away by Gadoury’s discovery.
“What makes William’s project fascinating is the depth of his research,” said Canadian Space Agency liaison officer Daniel de Lisle. “Linking the positions of stars to the location of a lost city along with the use of satellite images on a tiny territory to identify the remains buried under dense vegetation is quite exceptional.”
Being 15, Gadoury has decided to name the city K’ÀAK ‘CHI, a Mayan phrase which in English means “fire mouth.”
The next step for Gadoury will be seeing the city in person. He’s already presented his findings to two Mexican archaeologists, and has been promised that he’ll join expeditions to the area.
Says Gadoury: “It would be the culmination of three years of work and the dream of lifetime.”
Star pupil finds lost Mayan city by studying ancient charts of the night sky from his bedroom
William Gadoury, 15, was fascinated by the ancient Central American civilization and spent hours poring over diagrams of constellations and maps of known Mayan cities.
And then he made a startling realisation: the two appeared to be linked.
“I was really surprised and excited when I realised that the most brilliant stars of the constellations matched the largest Maya cities,” he told the Journal de Montréal.
In hundreds of years of scholarship, no other scientist had ever found such a correlation.
Studying 22 different constellations, William found that they matched the location of 117 Mayan cities scattered throughout Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador.
When he applied his theory to a 23rd constellation, he found that two of the stars already had cities linked to them but that the third star was unmatched.
William took to Google Maps and projected that there must be another city hidden deep in the thick jungles of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico.
The Canadian Space Agency agreed to train its satellite telescopes on the spot and returned with striking pictures: what appears to be an ancient Mayan pyramid and dozens of smaller structures around it.
If the satellite photographs are verified, the city would be among the largest Mayan population centers ever discovered.
It fell to William to christen the new city and he chose the name K’aak Chi, meaning Fire Mouth, and the teenager said he hoped to one day see the ruins with his own eyes.
“It would be the culmination of my three years of work and the dream of my life,” he said. He became interested in the Mayans after reading about their predictions that the world would end in 2012.
Reaching the city will not be easy. It is in one of the most remote and inaccessible areas of Mexico and an archaeological mission would be costly.
“It’s always about money. Expedition costs are horribly expensive,” said Dr. Armand LaRocque, a specialist at the University of New Brunswick.
Scientists said they were astonished by the discovery and that it had been made by someone so young.
“What is fascinating about the project of William, is the depth of his research,” said Daniel de Lisle.
“Linking the position of stars and the location of a lost city and the use of satellite images on a tiny territory to identify the remains buried under dense vegetation, is quite exceptional.”