Palenque, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Palenque is a Mayan archaeological site located in the Mexican state of Chiapas.

Maya, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Maya

It is a medium-sized site, smaller than Tikal and Copán, but contains some of the most beautiful architecture and sculpture works that the Maya have produced. The site had long been abandoned when the Spaniards arrived in the Chiapas area in the 16th century. The first famous structures visible today were built from 600. If we believe in the list of “mythical” kings in Palenque, the first reigning state of B’aakal, now known as A Kix Chan, would probably be Olmec.

Mythology, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Mythology

Another ancient name of Palenque was Lakam Ha, which can be translated as “great waters” for rivers and large waterfalls located in the area of the site. The Maya found Lakam Ha during the Mesoamerican pre-classic period, around 100 BC, as a predominantly agricultural village, in an area favored by the many springs and rivers in the region. Palenque continued to be inhabited for several generations who dedicated themselves to agriculture; the place was abandoned gradually leaving space to the advancing forest. By the 16th century, the region was completely uninhabited. Between 1949 and 1952, the Mexican government, through the Instituto Nacional de Antropología and Historia (INAH), sent a team of explorers and diggers led by Mexican archaeologist Alberto Ruz Lhuillier. Among the contributions of this team is the discovery under the Temple of Inscriptions, the tomb of King Pacal the Great, considered by many to be the most important tomb found throughout the Mesoamerican area.

King Pacal, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

King Pacal

The “Temple of Inscriptions”

Inscriptions temple, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Inscriptions temple

The Temple of Inscriptions, dating back to about 675 is the funeral monument of King Pacal. It is one of the most significant buildings of the site and one of the most remarkable tombs in Central America, hosting the second hieroglyph for the length of the Maya world. The larger stones weigh from 12 to 15 tonnes and are positioned on top of the pyramid. The total volume of the pyramid and temple is 32,500 cubic meters.

 

The palace

Palenque palace, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Palenque palace

The Palace is a complex of adjacent and interconnected buildings and courtyards built, remodeled and altered by generations over a 400-year-old, on an artificial terrace. It is located in the central part of the archaeological area and its name is due to the union of courts, arcades and underground passages, and the four-tower tower that forms it.

 

Group of crosses

Crosses group, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Crosses group

The group of crosses is formed by the “Temple of the Cross”, from the Temple of the Sun and from the “Temple of the Foliage Cross”. It is a set of temples built on a step pyramid, each of which has important bas-reliefs inside it. The crosses to which the names of temples refer to are actually representations of the tree of creation that is in the center of the world (according to Mayan mythology).

 

Aqueduct

Palenque aqueduct, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Palenque aqueduct

It is a three-meter-high structure leading to the Otolum River crossing the main square of Palenque along the section that corresponds to the eastern facade of the Palace. The aqueduct is completed by a stone bridge built in the place known as Queen’s Bath in the far north of the main group.

 

Temple of the Lion

Lion temple, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Lion temple

The Lion’s Temple is 200 m south of the main group. It has its name for an elaborate bas-relief, now destroyed, representing a king sitting on a jade-shaped throne.

 

Count’s Temple

Counts temple, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Counts temple

The Count’s Temple was named so because of Jean Frederic Waldeck who lived there during his stay in Palenque. Waldeck was not really a count but it was attributed to noble titles. The elegant building has a staircase consisting of five bodies. At the top, there is a temple that retains all of its original architectural elements.

 

Palenque, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

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Palenque, definition and study. A-Z index of Cognitio.

Palenque