Mayan pyramids: what are they, when and how were they built –

If you thought that the pyramids were the exclusive heritage of the Egyptians, that is because you have not taken a tour of Mexican lands. Because the Mayan society also has its pyramids. You did not know? Well, it does and, of course, these pyramids have a historical origin and a very important spiritual meaning for civilization. In this post we are going to explain everything you need to know about the Mayan pyramids: what are they, when and how were they built. In addition to other very interesting details about them.

Origin of the Mayan pyramids

Several groups of scholars who have been interested in this Mesoamerican architecture have agreed to formulate the theory that the pyramids were built respecting or, rather, imitating the very topography of the place. That is, in those populations where mountains and volcanoes predominate, the perfect construction chosen by the Mayans was to build pyramids whose silhouette had that natural shape.

But it is true that there were probably more reasons to build these places with that shape, and it is that beyond the fact that they were an imitation of the prevailing landscape, the pyramidal shape has been shown to offer advantages when carrying out the construction itself.

Let’s keep in mind that the pyramids are made of stone and, with such construction material, the easiest way to gain height is to look for a triangular or pyramidal shape. Geometric shapes play their role in architectural designs where maximum efficiency and solidity in the structure are sought. Even today this form is still chosen in some buildings, although fewer, and it is returning to it as its advantages become known.

As to why these pyramids were built, the answer has, unsurprisingly, religious significance. They have about 3,000 years of history and are made of sandstone and limestone. For the Mayans, it is also known that geometric shapes were very important, as well as Mayan numbers and constellations, so it is not uncommon for them to opt for these constructions when they sought to create a place of worship in which to perform their rituals. And it is that indeed, in the Mayan pyramids ceremonies were carried out, sometimes of a sacred nature, while others, what was done inside were sacrifices.

It should be noted that the pyramids for sacrifice differed from the pyramids that were used as the venue for sacred ceremonies, since the former have steps located on the sides, which was where the priests climbed to the top, since the temple was located there. Up there they made their sacrifices. As for the sacred pyramids, which were where the gods were, their steps were very steep, almost impossible to reach them. Why? You may be wondering and the question is quite curious and it is precisely that they wanted to prevent people from accessing the gods because, according to Mayan beliefs, the sacred should not be touched by the mundane mortal.

Another curiosity of these architectures is that the Mayan pyramids are full of passagewaysnot all of them, but secret passageways have been found in many of them, which gives an extra halo of mystery to the place that becomes a magical space in terms of sensations.

How the Mayan pyramids were built: theories

There is no unanimity among scholars about how were the mayan pyramids built, but several possible theories that at least try to get closer to reality, which we do not know with certainty. Let’s look at some of these theories.

With outside influence

Each Mayan city did have its own pyramid. And it has even been thought that the idea of ​​the pyramids is not exclusive to the Mayans, but that they were influenced by other Mexican peoples.

following the constellations

We can take the pyramid of Chichen Itza as a reference to guess how the Mayan pyramids were built where the Mayans not only limited themselves to erecting a building, but they did so by playing with light and shadow, so that especially on solstice days and equinox, amazing figures like that of a snake were allowed to glimpse, product only of optical illusion.

Not only the pyramids, but even the cities are said to have been built in constellation patterns. The location was not fortuitous, but they were located so that joining the points, a constellation could be drawn.

What are the most important Mayan pyramids

There are many Mayan pyramids but these are the most important ones that you should not miss if you have the opportunity to visit their lands. They are beautiful and it feels like you are entering a magical world when you are with them. Do you dare to check it out?

Chichen Itza pyramid

We have referred to it before, but we have to return to the Chichen Itza pyramid because its importance and magnitude deserve it. Not for nothing is it one of the seven wonders of the modern world. It is located in Yucatan and is a pyramid with four sides and four levels. It ends in a temple that is rectangular in shape. Very curious. Was the cult temple of the god Kukulkan or Feathered Serpent god.

Coba Mayan Pyramid

Heritage of Quintana Roo, it is relatively recent if we compare it with other pyramids, since the city was built between the years 500 to 900 of our era. It is the Nohoch Mul pyramid, with 7 levels, 42 meters high and no less than 120 steps to climb it.

Pyramid of the Magician, of the Dwarf or Great Chilán

In Yucatan there is this wonder of 35 meters and oval plant that, according to legend, was built by a dwarf and in a single night. His goal was to rule the city. And of course merits were not lacking.

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