After collector dies, Mayan archaeological treasures returned to public view

Ancient Mayan pieces were delivered by Mónica Naranjo Talancón to the director in Yucatán of INAH. They belonged to her late husband, Joao Domingo Branco Dos Santos.
Ancient Mayan pieces were delivered by Mónica Naranjo Talancón to the director in Yucatán of INAH. They belonged to her late husband, Joao Domingo Branco Dos Santos.

Some Mayan relics have been liberated from a man’s private collection.

The pieces were incorporated into the Single System of Public Registry of Monuments and Archaeological and Historical Zones.

The delivery of these valuable pieces takes place as the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH,) celebrates 80 years of safeguarding Mexico’s heritage, said Eduardo López Calzada, the director of the INAH Yucatan Center.

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The pieces were hand delivered by Mónica Naranjo Talancón after the death of her collector husband, Joao Domingo Branco Dos Santos.

“INAH acknowledges with a thank you to all citizens who have contributed to the preservation of the archaeological cultural legacy,” said López Calzada. “We especially appreciate the contribution of Mr. Jao Branco and his wife Mrs. Monica Naranjo and their respect for the regulations on archaeological monuments.”

“Today this heritage is returned to the Nation that belongs to all Mexicans and that we must preserve for future generations,” he continued.

Branco Dos Santos properly registered he collection in 2009 with the Directorate of Public Registry of Archaeological, Artistic and Historical Monuments and Zones. INAH and the collector agreed that the pieces would return to the public agency on Branco’s death.

Once studies of the pieces are complete, they will eventually be exhibited in museums for all to see. A description of the pieces was not provided by INAH, although a photo appears to indicate two figurative clay sculptures.

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