Facts on the Mayans
The Maya is a pre-Columbian American civilization. This fascinating civilization has actually developed its own written language, architecture, mathematical and astronomical system. The history of the Mayans is interesting and very complex. Below you can find some amazing facts about this civilization to understand more on how they lived and who they were.
1. It is believed that millions of Mayans populated South America before Spanish exploiters arrived here. Each large city here had more than 100, 000 inhabitants.
2. Mayans had over 30 closely related languages and dialects.
3. The locations in which Maya people lived include eastern and southern Mexico, Belize, El Salvador, Guatemala and western Honduras.
4. This impressive civilization existed for more than 2, 000 years, during which Mayan built massive stone pyramids, temples and sculptures.
5. They developed their own writing system, using hieroglyphs.
6. Mayan had a functional agricultural system, but also independent city-states.
7. One of the most popular drinks among Maya people is the blache. The beverage is made from fermented honey mixed with the bark of the blache tree.
8. The Mayan art work is still considered to be one of the most sophisticated and appreciated forms of art in history. However, their best art work is believed to come in the form of architecture. Mayan architecture is absolutely spectacular.
9. Mayans used sweat baths to purify their body. These baths were a type of saunas, but they were very important in common belief.
10. Mayans named their children based on the day in which they were born. Each day of the Mayan Calendar had a specific name for both boys and girls, which parents always used.
11. The Mayan calendar had different cycles. The cycle we are currently in is predicted to end in earthquakes. Other cycles ended in fire or flood. The Mayan calendar is so advanced because the civilization had a complex understanding of astronomy.
12. No one knowns how and why the Mayan culture vanished, as this was a very advanced civilization.
13. Mayan people had an interesting form of sacrifice. They paint the victim blue and then remove its heart, while still beating. A priest was to perform this ritual.
14. Health and medicine were a complex blend of mind, body, science, ritual and religion for Mayans.
15. Mayans practiced human sacrifice for religious and medical reasons.
16. It is a well known fact that Mayans commonly used hallucinogenic drugs, both in daily life and during religious rituals.
17. The last Maya state existed until 1697. Itza is nowadays a popular archaeological site, with numerous impressive monuments.