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The great archeological site of Uxmal is located on Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula and it is much more than a single pyramid and more than a group of buildings. This was a large city occupied by Mayans at least 3,000 years ago. The city of Uxmal contains the remains of a community of no less than 25,000 inhabitants. As many other archeological sites in Mexico, this one is designated a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the top tourist destinations in Mexico. Uxmal is pronounced Ush-mal. The meaning of this word for the Mayans is not clear and there is a bit of controversy about the meaning of the word. On one hand, some experts in the language have suggested the word meant to the Mayans “built three times,” while on the other hand, others translate it as “what is to come.” As you can see, the proposed meanings are not even close to each other.
April 23 2018
Uxmal is located in the “puuc” region of the Yucatan peninsula, a hilly area in contrast with most of the flat region of Yucatan. In fact, experts have agreed that the word “puuc” means hill. It is between the cities of Merida (the capital city of the state of Yucatan) and Campeche (the capital city of the state of Campeche).
The ceremonial pyramid is now known as the "Pyramid of the Magician" or the "Pyramid of the Soothsayer." The pyramid stands out from other Mayan structures because of its unusual rounded sides, 115-foot height and steepness. Uxmal is the most important archeological site representing what is called the Puuc architectural style. This particular style flourished in the Late Classic Period, this is from AD 600 to AD 900. Characteristics of the Puuc style include limestone construction, smooth wall surfaces, masks and other representations of the rain god Chac (Chaac). The central buildings in Uxmal cover approximately 60 hectares or 150 acres, however, the remains of the residential district extend over much more ground.
As many other archeological jewels in Mexico, the city of Uxmal is associated with mystery and legend. One story suggests that the city's first king was bested by a magical dwarf named Itzamna, who won the position as Uxmal's king by constructing the tallest monument in the city in one night. Walking through the city of Uxmal is a deep experience of the amazing artistic and architectural talents of the Mayans. The details of the construction of every building is more than admirable, it is astonishing to see the beautiful finishing and the profound meaning of every single symbol perfectly embedded in every building.
Finally dear reader, from the Collected Poems of Octavio Paz 1957-1987 the following poem, En uxmal El sol es tiempo; el tiempo, sol de piedra; la piedra, sangre. La luz no parpadea, el tiempo se vacía de minutos, se ha detenido un pájaro en el aire. Se despeña la luz, despiertan las columnas y, sin moverse, bailan. La hora es transparente: vemos, si es invisible el pájaro, el color de su canto. La lluvia, pie danzante y largo pelo, el tobillo mordido por el rayo, desciende acompañada de tambores: abre los ojos el maíz, y crece. El muro al sol respira, vibra, ondula, trozo de cielo vivo y tatuado: el hombre bebe sol, es agua, es tierra. Y sobre tanta vida la serpiente que lleva una cabeza entre las fauces: los dioses beben sangre, comen hombres.
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Uxmal A City Of Mystery And Legend
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