Research Paper On Mayan Civilization

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Akash Guruswamy
Mrs. Kara Ledbetter
Pre-AP English 1
25 January 2016
The Maya The Mayans were the indigenous people who lived in Meso-America, present day Central America, prior to Spanish arrival. At its height, the Maya civilization has a population of around eight million. The Maya civilization stills stands today, but is concentrated in a much smaller area due to the Spanish invasion. As a result many abandoned Mayan cities stand today showing what life was like for the Mayans. Some of the largest abandoned cities of the Maya are Chichen Itza and Palenque. The current ruinous states of Chichen Itza and Palenque are in contrast to the fact that these two cities were once magnificent cities of the ancient Maya. At one time the Mayans were
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In fact, the name Chichen Itza comes from a huge sinkhole called the “Sacred Cenote”. The Mayans threw their valuables and even humans as sacrifices (Cartwright). Scientists have found numerous jade jewelry in the sinkhole. We could assume that the jewelry probably belonged to the women who were thrown in. Chichen Itza is located in Northern Mexico at the edge of the Yucatan Peninsula (national Geographic). At its time it served as a huge regional trade hub. Chichen Itza is so spectacular that it has been named one of the Seven Wonders of the World. The two main attractions of Chichen Itza are the Temple of Kukulkan and its ball court. The Temple of Kukulkan showed the Mayans achievements in astronomy. To clarify, National Geographic, one of the largest non-profit science organizations in the world, states that “The temple has 365 steps-one for each day of the year.” This showed us that the Mayans used their astronomical discoveries in their architecture. Additionally, Chichen Itza had a ball court and it was the largest of its time. The objective of the game was for players to throw a twelve pound rubber ball through a hoop, similar to basketball. What made the game more intense was that the losers were killed (National Geographic). Chichen Itza’s ball court was similar to the Roman Colosseum. Once the Spanish received permission to go on an expedition to…show more content…
Chichen Itza still stands today showing us how advanced the Mayans were of their time. One of the greatest aspects of Chichen Itza id that it is now one of the Seven Wonders of the World. Palenque was almost identical to Chichen Itza accomplishing more than any other city of its time. Some of the most important features of Palenque were the planning of expansion and the use of aqueducts for running water. Chichen Itza and Palenque illustrate how much innovation the Mayans had. They did everything from devising the modern day calendar to create plumbing. It is no wonder that Chichen Itza and Palenque are the most famous tourist destinations of Mexico today. If the Mayan were never driven away by the Spanish, they would have been able to accomplish a lot more and possibly would have become a major center for technology similar to Silicon Valley
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