2 new Maya cities in Mexico could connect the empire's north and south regions

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Archaeologists in Mexico have found an ancient Maya city in the state of Campeche and rediscovered another forest-covered site that first was stumbled upon in the 1970s.

The National Institute for Anthropology and History says the discoveries will help archaeologists study the cultural and political histories of an area known as the Central Lowlands of the Maya region.

The first site, known as Tamchen, features plazas, palatial buildings and a 45-foot-tall (15-meter-tall) pyramid. Its name means "deep well," and comes from a collection of underground water tanks.

The second, known as Lagunita, was first discovered 40 years ago by American researcher Eric von Euw. His sketches of various monuments, including a facade representing the jaws of a reptile, were used to relocate the ruins.