Archaeology & History
Hidden images found in 500-year-old codex
By T.K. Randall
August 21, 2016 · 6 comments
Images from one of several similar codices found in Mexico. Image Credit: Public Domain
A mysterious deer-hide manuscript from Mexico has revealed a series of hidden storytelling images.
One of 20 surviving codices created in the Americas before the arrival of Europeans, the aged manuscript contains several rigid pages painted over with layers of white chalk and plaster.
Experts had long suspected that the codex contained more than just blank pages but it wasn't until the development of a technique known as hyperspectral imaging that it became possible to peer through the centuries-old layers and reveal the vivid images hidden underneath.
Like some of the other Mexican codices dating back to this time period, the manuscript's pages were found to be full of colorful pictographs representing the words and phrases of a story.
The specific people and events depicted in the images however are not yet fully understood.
"This is very much a new technique," said study co-author David Howell.
"We've learned valuable lessons about how to use hyperspectral imaging in the future both for this very fragile manuscript and for countless others like it."
Source: Live Science
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