Institute of Archaeology


Lost Tombs of the Ancient Maya

20 October 2021

Panos Kratimenos (PhD researcher, UCL Institute of Archaeology) was invited to participate in a documentary about the Maya which was recently broadcast in the UK.

Tikal Maya ruins, northern Guatemala (Wikimedia Creative Commons 4.0: https://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e7/Tikal_mayan_ruins_2009.jpg)

Institute research student Panos Kratimenos, whose research is concerned with shifts in burial practices around the time of the Maya 'Collapse', participated in the Channel 4 documentary which followed archaeologists as they searched for clues to how the Maya lived and what happened to them.  In addition to highlighting Maya burial patterns, Panos discussed the Maya writing system, calendar and codices.

In the programme, cutting-edge technology was used to scan for a royal tomb inside a 1200-year-old temple while a lakebed was excavated to search for clues to why the Maya abandoned their magnificent cities. Using CGI and unique access to excavations across three countries, the programme provided an extraordinary opportunity to understand what happened to this fascinating civilisation.

Watch again

Programme website