The Mayans

Resources, articles, and posts about the culture of the Mayans


Mayan Societal Collapses

Mayan Societal Collapses

While most readers are aware of the more famous collapse of the Classic era, an earlier Mayan collapse preceded it during the Late or Terminal Pre-Classic era. The reasons for the earlier collapse remain as murky as those for the later, but both emptied out great...
The Mayan Post-Classic Era

The Mayan Post-Classic Era

While millions of Mayans died or at least disappeared during the years of the Classic era collapse, the Mayan civilization didn’t totally vanish. The great cities of the southern lowlands were abandoned and the remaining Mayans took their civilization to the northern...
The Mayan Classic Era

The Mayan Classic Era

During the Mayan classic era, A.D. 250 to 900, millions of Maya lived in dozens of great city-states. The Mayan culture reached its zenith in culture, monumental architecture, great trading networks, the arts, mathematics and calendrics, astronomy and cosmology,...
The Mayan Pre-Classic Era

The Mayan Pre-Classic Era

The Mayan pre-classic period stretches from 2000 B.C. to A.D. 250, from the primitive huts of hunter-gatherers to organized agriculture and large cities. It covers the beginning of what we consider civilization to a complex, well-functioning, socially stratified...
The Mayan Ball Game

The Mayan Ball Game

The Mesoamerican ball game was played, experts think, by all the cultures in the region, beginning with the Olmecs who may have invented it. The ball game goes back 3,500 years, making it the first organized game in the history of sports. Mayans loved the game and...
Maya Hero Twins

Maya Hero Twins

The Maya had many myths; one of their most important and favorite myths concerned the Hero Twins, a pair of demi-gods who became heroes and tricksters. The myth is ancient going back to Pre-Classic era and probably into archaic times. The Twins appear on many...
Maya Agricultural Methods

Maya Agricultural Methods

Ancient Maya people were clever and hardworking farmers who used a variety of techniques to raise enough food to feed the large populations in Maya cities. Corn, or maize, was the main staple crop. Maize was grown together with beans and squash as each of the three...

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The Maya Concept of Beauty

The Maya Concept of Beauty

The Maya, just like people today, loved personal beauty, and they were willing to spend their wealth and endure much pain to achieve the perfect look. However, what they thought was beautiful differs in some respects from what people today find lovely. Here are some...
Maya Merchants and Traders

Maya Merchants and Traders

While agriculture was the basis of Maya civilization, trade was equally important. During the early Pre-Classic period, Maya living in small villages were somewhat self-sustaining. However, as the Maya began building their great cities, only trade would have brought...
Government of the Maya

Government of the Maya

Unlike the Aztec Empire, the Maya had no central controlling government. Rather, each Maya city-state had its own individual ruling family that controlled the city and surrounding rural area. Some city-states were larger and controlled other smaller city-states,...
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