From 1931 to 1943 Caso directed excavations at the site of the ancient Zapotec city of Monte Albán, in Oaxaca state. His discovery and analysis of the burial offerings at the extraordinary Tomb Seven proved that Monte Albán had been occupied by the Mixtec people after they had displaced the Zapotecs in the locality some time before the Spanish conquest. Caso gathered evidence pointing to five major phases in Monte Albán’s history dating back to the 8th century BC, and he was able to establish a rough chronology of that history through correlations with other sites. His other celebrated accomplishment was the deciphering of the Mixtec Codices.
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