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Mayan Civilization: Art And Architecture

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Mayan civilization: art and architecture


The Maya were a very large civilization that began from the 300 BC to 900 AD occupied southeastern Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras. They had a population of 10,000,000 inhabitants. Thanks to what they were too big, they could do unique architectures, which modern man still does not know how they built them, such as the Kukulcán pyramid or the “El Caracol."Or her art as peculiar as her calendar was among other things.


Kukulcán’s pyramid was named for the god Quetzalcoatl. The pyramid served more as a calendar, and what had 9 levels and 365 steps that represent the days of the year the Kukulcán pyramid measures 24 meters high, at the base of the stairs it has 2 snake heads, and refers to the god Quetzalcoatl. Each equinox (when the day and night last the same why the sun is located on Ecuador) appears a shadow of a snake in the pyramid, the Maya said what the God was what the earth goes down to visit them. It is said what was built in the 830s, despite so much construction time, the Maya knew what the equinox was, thanks to that observatory they had called ‘El Caracol’.

The Mayan Observatory or better known as "El Caracol" was an observatory what contributed a lot to the Maya, and what thanks to him knew where to build the Kukulcán pyramid, as well as the pyramid the snail was also located in Chichen Itzá what is said toIt was the most powerful Mayan city of the Yucatan Peninsula.

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Thanks to the observatory, the Maya could obtain extremely precise data, such as: what the year is 365.24 days, knew the exact duration of the annual solar cycle. 

From the top the Maya made observations to the stars and registered their movements, recent studies show that the “El Caracol” observatory is perfectly located to the direction of Venus. They called him Caracol for his peculiar shape and by his spiral stairs, it is a structure with a lot of complexity. It is on a round 18m base, it does not exceed 14 meters in diameter by 11 meters high. The Watchtower (high place where you can see great extension) reached 28 meters above the ground.

Thanks to the observatory, the snail, the Maya knew a lot about heaven. Thanks to their knowledge in mathematics and astronomy, they were able to make a very exact calendar. The best known calendars is the Haab and the Tzolk’in, both calendars gathered and created the long account calendar. The Haab is a 19 -month -old calendar, it is composed of 18 months what are 20 daysThe 5 days of the last month, gives a total of 365 days. The Sacred Mayan calendar is called Tzolk’in, this calendar is not divided into months but in "glyphs" (a painted or engraved sign). Each of these glyphs lasted 20 days.

Tikal was a very important Mayan city what was located in Guatemala, it was built by limestone and temples, there was a type of structure with wood bars that looks like a jail, there were also structures what seemed to the ball game (Pok aPok) seven clues were found. All the stone they used took it out of a nearby quarry. Within this city there were many creations of the Maya such as: La Gran Plaza, the Plaza de los Seven Temples, the Central Acropolis etc.,


As we could see the Maya were very intelligent, and what many very complicated things for those years such as the pyramid, the Caracol Observatory, its calendar, and its city, what many other things like temples etc.,. They developed very advanced architecture for that time.


  • Martínez, José Antonio González. “Mayan art: architecture, sculpture and painting.”Art |FUSIONHABLARTE, ART |FUSION SHORT, 5 Jan. 2018,   

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