Archaeologists discovered two 500-year-old iron ship anchors on Mexico’s Gulf Coast, claiming that they may have belonged to the fleet led by Spain’s Hernán Cortés, who conquered the Aztec empire in the 16th century.
This finding potentially offers an insight into the Spanish invasion, while another anchor was discovered last year, containing wood originating from a Spanish tree. All three anchors were found on the coast just north of the port city of Veracruz.
As BBC informs, Veracruz was initially known as Villa Rica, and was the location where Cortés’ fleet landed in 1519. It became a bustling harbour town in the years after Spain’s conquest over the Aztecs in 1521.
The divers found the anchors 10-15m below the sea, under a thick layer of sediment. Archaeologists now aspire that this discovery will lead to the discovery of more marine artefacts that can present the history of the Spanish invasion.
What is more, an additional 15 potential sites containing anchors have been identified.
Cortés is believed to have destroyed the ships, by burning, sinking or beaching them, aiming to prevent his men from abandoning the voyage.