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K'inich Yax K'uk' Mo
Definition by Joshua J. Mark

K'inich Yax K'uk' Mo

Yax K'uk' Mo' (pronounced `Yash Kook Mo') was the founder and first king of the dynasty that ruled the Maya city of Copan (in modern day Honduras) for 350 years. Known formally by his royal name, K'inich Yax K'uk' Mo', he reigned for eleven...
Chichen Itza
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Chichen Itza

Chichen Itza, located at the northern tip of the Yucatán Peninsula of modern Mexico, was a Maya city which was later significantly influenced by the Toltec civilization. Flourishing between c. 750 and 1200 CE, the site is rich in monumental...
Tikal
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Tikal

Tikal, located in the north of the Petén region of Guatemala, was a major Maya city which flourished between 300 and 850 CE. The city, known to the Maya themselves as Mutul, is one of the grandest in Mesoamerica. Amongst the first...
Uxmal
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Uxmal

Uxmal, in north-west Yucatán, Mexico, was an important Maya city which flourished between the 6th and 10th centuries CE. The city, following an extensive restoration programme, is the best preserved of all Maya sites, and it possesses...
Copan
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Copan

Copán (in modern Honduras) is located on the floodplain of the river of the same name. It was the most southerly of the Classic Maya centres and, at an altitude of 600 metres, the highest. Copán reached the height of its power...
Ghosts in the Ancient World
Definition by Joshua J. Mark

Ghosts in the Ancient World

To the people of the ancient world, there was no doubt that the soul of a human being survived bodily death. Whatever an individual's personal views were on the subject, culturally they were brought up with the understanding that the dead...
Chaco Canyon
Definition by Benjamin Oswald

Chaco Canyon

Chaco Canyon was the center of a pre-Columbian civilization flourishing in the San Juan Basin of the American Southwest from the 9th to the 12th century CE. Chacoan civilization represents a singular period in the history of an ancient people...
Yaxchilan
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Yaxchilan

Yaxchilan, located on the banks of the Usumacinta River in the Yucatán peninsula of Mexico, was an important Late Classic Maya centre. The Maya dated the founding of their city to 320 CE, but Yaxchilan flourished between c. 580 and...
Pulque
Definition by Mark Cartwright

Pulque

Pulque is an alcoholic drink which was first drunk by the Maya, Aztecs, Huastecs and other cultures in ancient Mesoamerica. Similar to beer, it is made from the fermented juice or sap of the maguey plant (Agave americana). In the Aztec language...
Wall
Definition by Joshua J. Mark

Wall

The English word 'wall' is derived from the Latin, vallus meaning 'a stake' or 'post' and designated the wood-stake and earth palisade which formed the outer edge of a fortification. The palisades were in use early on and are mentioned by...