500-year-old gold ingot of Aztec empire

Researchers confirmed the 2kg gold ingot was part of the Aztec treasure plundered by Spanish colonists five centuries ago.

New scientific analysis on a large gold bar found centuries ago in downtown Mexico City helps confirm it's an object abandoned by the Spanish colonists when temporarily withdrawing from the imperial capital. Aztec. The National Institute of Anthropology and History of Mexico (INAH) announced the results of the gold bullion test on January 9.

Picture 1 of 500-year-old gold ingot of Aztec empire
Gold ingot was cast in the 16th century. (Photo: Science Alert).

On June 29, 1520, Emperor Aztec Moctezuma, sparked the battle that forced Marquis Hernán Cortés and his army and allies to flee to preserve their lives. A year later, Cortés returned to besiege the city when the Aztec empire was weakened by a supply of food and disease.

The gold ingot was discovered in 1981 on a construction project at a depth of 5 m below Mexico City, which used to be the Azochtitlán capital of the Aztec empire. The Spanish army used a canal running through the city to flee. The gold bar weighs about 2 kg, is 26.2 cm long, 5.4 cm wide and 1.4 cm thick.

X-ray fluorescent chemical analysis helped researchers identify the gold ingot born in 1519-1520 , coinciding with the time when Cortés ordered the robbery of gold items from the Aztec treasury, melting and casting ingots. to make shipping to Europe easier. According to archaeologist Leonardo López Luján, who directed the excavation, the gold ingot was a special evidence for the transitional period in world history. A detailed description of gold bar analysis was published in the January issue of the journal Arqueología Mexicana.

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