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The Narration Of Maya: The Spanish Perspective

Author : Brian Petit


The Mayan empire existed as one amongst the highly influential and wealthy dynasties on the world stage. This was however meant to exist until Spanish explorers and conquistadors found their way into Mexico. During their colonial time, they destroyed most of Mayan learning materials like books and scrolls. As a result, only a few survived to tell the facts regarding the once prominent kingdom.

Despite having a diverse cultural and traditional heritage, they left an indelible mark in the modern world by developing the binary numbering system upon which modern day computing is based. It is therefore evident that the Mayan civilisation pioneered most of what exists today.

The gone by times of the Mayan society are carved up into three classic phases, i.e. the pre classic time, the classic time and lastly the post classic time.

The Pre classic Time

This was the epoch between the years 1500 BC and 300 AD. It is during this time that the Olmecs forefathers of the Mayans put down roots on the gulf coast. There is no reference to draw facts about the Olmecs but they are believed to be the founders of the Mesoamerican almanac plus the hieroglyphic writing systems.

The Classic Time

This was the time between the years 300 and 900 AD. For the duration of this epoch, Mayans cultivated an intricate societal order based on the pecking order of individual's professionalism. A king sat at the helm of the land to oversee all operations of the kingdom assisted by his appointees. Throughout this age, Mayan suburbs were located in Belize and central Mexico. Just to mention a few important Mayan during this time are Chiapas, Palenque, Quirigua and Yaxchilan.

The post Classic Time

This was the time between the years 1000 and 1500 AD. During this time Mayans relocated to the isthmus of Yucat. This was a century after they had migrated from the Chichen Itza city in 900 AD. It is then that they were confronted by the Toltec community and left in 1300 AD. Two centuries later, Spaniards attacked them leading to the downfall of a once prosperous kingdom.

The Culture of the Mayan society

Mayans were proficient in weaving pottery. They also indulged in art activities as exhibited by a number of murals and architectural magnum opuses. The Spanish are the best placed to tell the story of the Mayan civilisation as it is believed that they carried with them a lot of reference material that can produce facts regarding the history of Maya.


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Submitted : 2011-10-22    Word Count : 410    Times Viewed: 1120