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Liquid Mercury Found Under Mexican Pyramid 133

An anonymous reader writes: An archaeologist has discovered liquid mercury at the end of a tunnel beneath a Mexican pyramid, a finding that could suggest the existence of a king's tomb or a ritual chamber far below one of the most ancient cities of the Americas. Mexican researcher Sergio Gómez ... has spent six years slowly excavating the tunnel, which was unsealed in 2003 after 1,800 years. Last November, Gómez and a team announced they had found three chambers at the tunnel’s 300ft end, almost 60ft below the the temple. Near the entrance of the chambers, they a found trove of strange artifacts: jade statues, jaguar remains, a box filled with carved shells and rubber balls.
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Liquid Mercury Found Under Mexican Pyramid

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  • Wow (Score:1, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward

    And I thought a real king should have had solid mercury in his tomb!

    • Re:Wow (Score:5, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 25, 2015 @03:06PM (#49551757)

      A real king has Freddy Mercury in his tomb. (Or preferably all of Queen.)

    • Originally he did, but because of Man's imperialist and engineeringist hubris the climate warmed so much that the mercury is liquid today.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        Originally he did, but because of Man's imperialist and engineeringist hubris the climate warmed so much that the mercury is liquid today.

        Premises:

        1. The freezing/melting point for mercury is approximately -39 C,
        2. part of Mexico (south of the Tropic of Cancer) is considered tropical.

        Conclusion:

        I'm glad the climate has warmed since then.

  • Solids (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 25, 2015 @02:53PM (#49551707)

    Meanwhile, liquid pyramids have been spotted on Mercury.

  • Do not (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 25, 2015 @02:58PM (#49551729)

    Do not activate the gate.
    Do not activate the gate.
    DO NOT ACTIVATE THE GATE!

    • This is not gate, this is fifth element.

      This is supreme being.

  • they a found trove of strange artifacts

    An English primer was not among them, it would seem.

    • they a found trove of strange artifacts

      An English primer was not among them, it would seem.

      The English Prime Minister never made it to Montecello's Pyramids, it was the Spanish under Francesco Bizarro that discovered them.

    • by kanweg ( 771128 )

      Not a native speaker here. What is wrong with that sentence?

      Ber

      • by kanweg ( 771128 )

        OK, I now see it. Amazing how the brain fixes things for you. It is like reading msaehd up wrdos and still being able to make sense of that.

        Bert

    • OK, I'm going to call bullshit here.

      they a found trove of strange artifacts

      Is a perfectly well constructed bit of English.

      So what the hell are you bitching about? If you think that's needing an English primer, maybe it's you who needs one?

      • by Xest ( 935314 )

        I'm pretty sure it's not a perfectly well constructed bit of English.

        But honestly, I don't blame you for claiming it's not, I read it correctly 3 times before I realised it's actually incredibly broken.

        It seems I have the capacity to automatically filter out terrible English unless I'm really trying hard to look for it. I'd wager you do too :)

        • As quoted, "they found a trove of strange artifacts" seems perfectly good to me.

          I'm simply not seeing where it's not valid English.

          So, tell me oh wise one, what's wrong with it? It's no different than "they found a pile of stuff" in terms of syntax.

          • by Xest ( 935314 )

            Here is what they said, followed by what you just said they said.

            they a found trove of strange artifacts
            they found a trove of strange artifacts

            Hopefully side by side you can more easily spot the blatant illiteracy :)

            • Wow ... human monkey brain stupid ... I looked at it again and again and my brain apparently fixed it each time.

              Thanks, because I simply wasn't seeing it. :-P

              • by Xest ( 935314 )

                Yeah tell me about it, as I say I was struggling at first and figured maybe it was a snobbish reference to the use of artifact rather than the British English but basically never used artefact.

                It wasn't until I literally parsed it word by word taking a pause in between that I caught it. It's a rather fantastic example of inbuilt human brain automatic error detection and correction though :) Judging by the replies it caught quite a few people - I think there's a psychological study in there somewhere!

              • Why did you retype it rather than copy-pasting?
  • Hmmm (Score:4, Informative)

    by koan ( 80826 ) on Saturday April 25, 2015 @03:05PM (#49551749)

    Near the entrance of the chambers, they a found trove of strange artifacts: jade statues, jaguar remains, a box filled with carved shells and rubber balls.

    What's strange about any of that?

  • The preserved ship was found underneath the tombs, hidden safely in a pool of mercury from those who sought its destruction millennia ago. But now the pool has been emptied, and the ship's beacon detected, awakening the ancient enemy, who even now races to their final destination, readying massive engines of destruction, pointing them at a small, insignificant planet, called... Earth (zoom out to stock photo of Earth in space - Cue "threatening alien" theme).

  • You'd know him from the Terracotta warriors uncovered. The Burial site is close to being a wonder of the world and it's known where it's at. They won't dig there due to the high levels of Mercury measured at the site, a vast simulated area of water was created using Mercury in the tomb (as claimed by legends). http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Q... [wikipedia.org]

    All of the early civilizations of pre-Columbian America used Cinnabar (a source of Mercury) in their rituals and almost always at burial sites due to it's red color.

    • by Anonymous Coward on Saturday April 25, 2015 @04:43PM (#49552045)
      While there are high levels of mercury there, it isn't at a level that is particular unsafe and not the reason they've yet to open it. Various other tombs had been devastated by half-ass archeology attempts several decades ago, and the Chinese don't want to mess up something so important. They've been working on some more minor tombs in the area and want to make sure that one is done right.
      • While there are high levels of mercury there, it isn't at a level that is particular unsafe and not the reason they've yet to open it. Various other tombs had been devastated by half-ass archeology attempts several decades ago, and the Chinese don't want to mess up something so important. They've been working on some more minor tombs in the area and want to make sure that one is done right.

        I agree. While the levels of Mercury are very high, they do want to do this one right and in no hurry.

  • by __aasehi2499 ( 1959610 ) on Saturday April 25, 2015 @04:19PM (#49551965)
    They don't show any photos of the items the headline brought you in with. How hard is it to take a photo?!?
    • It may be easier to take a photo than it is to get permission to publish it. If nothing else, many academic journals take a dim view of researchers publishing the gist of a paper before the paper itself is published. Prior publication may get your "original" paper dropped.

      I've probably done more photography underground than you have, by several hundreds of photos. It's not actually an easy task, particularly if you're needing photos up to research standards let alone publication standard.

  • by ChrisMaple ( 607946 ) on Saturday April 25, 2015 @04:51PM (#49552077)
    Call the E.P.A. to deal with mercury pollution. This must become a cleanup supersite, and the polluters brought to court and sued out of existence.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Molten metal beneath a pyramind. 'Nuff said. Notify SG1 and prepare for the onslaught by the goa'uld.

  • by CanadianMacFan ( 1900244 ) on Saturday April 25, 2015 @08:14PM (#49552789)

    Of course it would be liquid mercury. Now I'd be surprised if they found solid mercury down there!

  • They were a civilisation of dentists, and they kept their trove of Mercury around 'cause it's used in fabbing the amalgalm for fillings.

  • I'd love to don an airtight suit and try to walk/crawl on that river.

    According to these [physics.info] documents [dtic.mil], I'd displace .0092 m^3 (9195 cm^3) of mercury (yes, I weigh in at nearly 125 kg).

    By using the largest values for foot, calf, and thigh volumes, the second document tells me that I could stand up in the mercury, and that it would come up 15% of the length of my thighs or so.

    Assuming I'm vaguely rectangular when I'm supine (41 cm wide by 183 cm tall), I'd float in 1.2 cm of mercury.

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