MEXICO CITY (EFE).- Restoration work on a church and a cathedral in the central Mexican city of Zacatecas has resulted in the finding of 37 mummified bodies and a Bible from 1575 written in several languages, authorities said Tuesday.
The mummies were found in the Church of Santo Domingo, along with a small stairway leading to a grotto in which the skeleton of a Spanish colonial official was resting, the Zacatecas state government said.
Meanwhile, the Bible was found in the bibliographic archive of the Zacatecas Basilica Cathedral. It is written in Hebrew, Chaldean, Greek and Latin, and according to the state government there exist only 100 copies like it in the world.
The finds were made during the process of restoration being carried out at both religious locations, a task in which 75 workers are taking part and which is costing a total of 51 million pesos ($4.1 million).
Zacatecas, a state rich in minerals, became one of the main enclaves of the colonial epoch, a fact that serves to explain the construction of lavish buildings of which the cathedral and the Santo Domingo church are the most important.
The 16,000 artistic items and documents at the cathedral are also being classified, restored and preserved.
The restoration work is about halfway finished, the Zacatecas government said in a communique. EFE