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Mexico: Izamal Part II – The Pyramid

November 2, 2009

Just outside Izamal lie the remains of the gigantic Kinich Kak Mo Pyramid, once the third largest structure of its size in pre-Columbian Mexico.

At the time of the Conquest, the complex held a great temple on its summit.  The Spanish were quick in their destruction of this monument to the old religion.  We understand today the savagery of pre-Hispanic Native American rituals in central Mexico, but did the ways of the Mayans of the Yucatan match the barbarism of the Aztecs to the west?  We shall never know; the Mayan books were burned en masse as fast as the Catholic priests got their hands on these hand-written works of unmatched intellect and artistic beauty.

Here is all that remains atop the pyramid ruin.  Its engineering and construction remain one of the most ambitious projects to have ever been completed in Mexico.  But the details of its history have been forgotten.  Only a lonely Christian cross proclaims the site to have been “sanctified.”

Izamal030

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