Yucatán (Spanish pronunciation: [ɟ͡ʝukaˈtan] (listen)), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Yucatán (Spanish: Estado Libre y Soberano de Yucatán), is one of the 31 states which, with Mexico City, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. It is divided into 106 municipalities, and its capital city is Mérida.
Before the arrival of Spaniards to the Yucatán Peninsula, the name of this region was Mayab. In the Mayan language, "ma' ya'ab" is translated as "a few". It was a very important region for the Mayan civilization, which reached the peak of its development here, where the Mayans founded the cities of Chichen Itza, Izamal, Motul, Mayapan, Ek' Balam and Ichcaanzihóo (also called T'ho), now Mérida.
After the Spanish conquest of Yucatán, the Peninsula was a single administrative and political entity, the Captaincy General of Yucatán. Following independence and the breakup of the Mexican Empire in 1823, the first Republic of Yucatán was proclaimed, which was then voluntarily annexed to the Federal Republic of United Mexican States on December 21, 1823. On March 16, 1841, as a result of cultural and political conflicts around the federal pact, Yucatán declared its independence from Mexico. forming a second Republic of Yucatán. Eventually on July 14, 1848, Yucatán was forced to rejoin Mexico. In 1858, in the middle of the caste war, the state of Yucatán was divided for the first time, establishing Campeche as a separate state (officially in 1863). During the Porfiriato, in 1902, the state of Yucatán was divided again to form the Federal territory that later became the present state of Quintana Roo.
|Estado Libre y Soberano de Yucatán (Spanish)|
Xóot' Noj Lu'umil Yúukatan (Yucatec Maya)
State of Yucatán within Mexico
|Admission||December 23, 1823|
|• Governor||Mauricio Vila Dosal|
|• Senators||Jorge Carlos Ramírez Marín |
Raúl Paz Alonzo
|• Total||39,524 km2 (15,260 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||210 m (690 ft)|
|• Density||53/km2 (140/sq mi)|
|• Density rank||17th|
|Time zone||UTC−6 (CST)|
|• Summer (DST)||UTC−5 (CDT)|
|ISO 3166 code||MX-YUC|
|HDI||0.773 high Ranked 20th|
|GDP||US$ 9,191,180.625 th[b]|
|Website||Official Web Site|
|^ a. Joined the federation under the name of Federated Republic of Yucatán, included the modern states of Yucatán, Campeche and Quintana Roo. ^ b. The state's GDP was 117,647,112 thousand of pesos in 2008, amount corresponding to 9,191,180.625 thousand of dollars, being a dollar worth 12.80 pesos (value of June 3, 2010).|
The first is that the name resulted from confusion between the Mayan inhabitants and the first Spanish explorers around 1517:
Probably the first person to propose the "I do not understand" version was the friar Toribio de Benavente Motolinia. In his book Historia de los indios de la Nueva España (History of the Indians of New Spain) he says
because talking with those Indians of the coast, whatever the Spanish asked the Indians responded: Tectetán, Tectetán which means I don't understand you, I don't understand you; they corrupted the word, and not understanding what the Indians said, they said: Yucatán is the name of this land; and the same happened in a place, a cape, which they also called Cape Cotoch; and Cotoch in that language means house.
The second proposed explanation comes from Bernal Díaz del Castillo. In his book Historia verdadera de la conquista de la Nueva España (True History of the Conquest of New Spain), he says Yucatá means "land of yucas", a plant that was cultivated by the Maya and was an important food source for them.
The third, and most likely, explanation is that the name derived from the Maya people who inhabited the region. Today the people are referred to by their Aztec name, the Chontal, but the Chontal Maya people refer to themselves as the Yokot'anob or the Yokot'an, meaning "the speakers of Yoko ochoco". Thus Yucatan most likely derives from Yokot'an.
The origin of the first settlements has not been scientifically confirmed, although the presence of first humans in the area dates from the late Pleistocene or ice age (about 10,000–12,000 years), according to the findings in the Loltún caves and caverns of Tulum (Women of the Palms).
The first Maya moved to the Peninsula circa 250 CE, from the Petén (today northern Guatemala), to settle the southeastern peninsula in the modern Bacalar, Quintana Roo. In 525, the Chanés (Mayan tribe that preceded the Itza), moved to the east of the peninsula, founding Chichén Itzá, Izamal, Motul, Ek' Balam, Ichcaanzihó (modern Mérida) and Champotón. Later, Tutul xiúes, Toltec descent, who came from the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, settled in the region causing displacement of the Itza and Cocomes—a diversified branch of Itzá—and finally, after years and many battles, was formed Mayapán League (composed of the Itza, the Xiús and Cocomes), that eventually disintegrated circa 1194, giving way to a period of anarchy and fragmentation into small domains which the Spanish conquistadors found in the 16th century.
In 1513, Juan Ponce de León had already conquered the island of Borinquén (now Puerto Rico) and had discovered Florida. Antón de Alaminos, who was with Ponce de León on this latest discovery, suspected that west of Cuba they could find new land. Under their influence, Diego Velázquez de Cuéllar, supported by the governor of Cuba, organized an expedition commanded by Francisco Hernández de Córdoba to explore the seas west of the island.
This expedition sailed from port of Ajaruco on February 8, 1517, to La Habana and after circling the island and sailing southwest by what is now known as the Yucatán Channel, the expedition made landfall at the Yucatán Peninsula on March 1. There are discrepancies about where the first explorers arrived. Some say it was in Isla Mujeres. Bernal Díaz del Castillo places it at Cabo Catoche where they saw a great city which they named the «Gran Cairo».
The conquest of Yucatán was completed two decades after the conquest of Mexico; by Francisco de Montejo "el Adelantado", his son Francisco de Montejo y León "el Mozo" and his nephew, Francisco de Montejo "el Sobrino". El Adelantado was in the expedition of Juan de Grijalva and was with Hernán Cortés in the third expedition that eventually became the Conquest of Mexico. He was subsequently appointed for the conquest of the Maya of Yucatán, but failed in his first attempt in 1527–28. In 1529 he was appointed Governor of Tabasco, with the order to pacify Tabasco and conquer Yucatán and Cozumel.
From Tabasco, Montejo led a new campaign to Yucatán from the west (1531–35) and failed again in his attempt. Circa 1535, after many bloody battles with the natives, he reached the complete pacification of the Province of Tabasco and began planning his new foray to Yucatán.
El Adelantado was appointed governor of Honduras and then of Chiapas. Therefore, he gave his son "El Mozo", the mission to consummate the conquest of Yucatán. Francisco de Montejo y León "el Mozo" founded the cities of San Francisco de Campeche on October 4, 1540, and Mérida on January 6, 1542 (in honor of Mérida, Extremadura). The city of Mérida was founded over the ruins of the Mayan city of Ichkanzihóo (T'ho) and the stones of old Mayan pyramids were used for the new buildings. Later, government powers were changed from Santa María de la Victoria, Tabasco, to Mérida on June 11, 1542. The newly founded Mérida was besieged by the Mayan troops of Nachi Cocom (overlord or 'Halach uinik' in Mayan language). It was a definitive battle for the Conquest of Yucatán. With that victory, the Spaniards consolidated their control of the western part of the peninsula.
Francisco de Montejo "El Adelantado" appointed his nephew, Francisco de Montejo "el Sobrino", to head the conquest of the eastern Yucatán, which was achieved after many bloody battles, ending with the foundation of the city of Valladolid on May 28, 1543.
Oppressive policies of inequality and prejudice were imposed on the native Mayans by the Spanish colonial government. In November 1761, Jacinto Canek, a Mayan from the town of Cisteil (now located in Yaxcabá Municipality), led an armed uprising against the government, which was quickly put down. Captured insurgents were taken to Mérida, where they were tried and tortured. As a warning to the population against rebellion, Cisteil was burned and covered with salt.
This abortive rebellion was not of great consequence to the colonial regime, but it marked the history of the peninsula and clearly delineated anti-colonial tensions in the region. The uprising was a precursor to the social upheaval that would explode less than a century later, as the Caste War. The Canek rebellion is remembered today as a symbol of the racial and social conflict that predominated for centuries in the Spanish colonies.
Because of its geographical remoteness from the center of New Spain, especially from Mexico City, Yucatán was not militarily affected by the Mexican War of Independence, but the war influenced the enlightened people of Yucatán. In 1820 Lorenzo de Zavala, member of Sanjuanistas (a group of creoles who met at the church of San Juan in downtown Mérida), created the Patriotic Confederation, which eventually divided into two groups: the supporters of the Spanish government under the Cádiz Constitution and another led by Zavala, which sought outright independence from Spain. Mariano Carrillo Albornoz then Governor of Yucatán, sent Zavala and Manuel García Sosa as deputies of the Cádiz Cortes to Madrid, while the other liberals were imprisoned. While this was happening in Yucatán, the Plan of Iguala was proclaimed in the current state of Guerrero (at that time part of the Intendency of Mexico).
On September 15, 1821, in the Hall of Councils of the City of Mérida, Yucatán declares its independence from Spain, almost immediately, Governor Juan María Echeverri sent two representatives to negotiate the incorporation of Yucatán to the Mexican Empire. The incorporation to the Mexican Empire was on November 2, 1821.
The Mexican Empire was quickly overthrown under the Plan of Casa Mata, the provinces of the empire became independent states. The first Republic of Yucatán, declared on May 29, 1823, joined the Federal Republic of the United Mexican States as the Federated Republic of Yucatán on December 23, 1823.
The second Republic of Yucatán[a] emerged when the federal pact signed by Yucatán and endorsed in the Constitution of Yucatán of 1825 was broken by the centralist government of Mexico since 1835. In 1841 the state of Tabasco decreed its separation from Mexico and Miguel Barbachano, then governor of Yucatán, sent a commission headed by Justo Sierra O'Reilly to meet with Tabasco authorities to propose the creation of an independent federal republic from Mexico formed by the two states. The idea failed when Tabasco rejoined Mexico in 1842.
On August 22, 1846, Mexican interim president José Mariano Salas restored the 1824 constitution and the federalism. Two years later, during the government of president José Joaquín de Herrera, Miguel Barbachano ordered the reinstatement of Yucatán to Mexico under the Constitution of Yucatán of 1825. A decisive factor for the reinstatement was the Caste War, which forced Yucatán to seek outside help. In 1852 due to internal struggles between opposing political factions, was created the Territory of Campeche. On April 29, 1863, during the government of Benito Juárez, Campeche gained its current status as an independent state.
The flag of Yucatán was raised on March 16, 1841. The period of the Republic of Yucatán was the only one in which the banner was officially used by the authorities of Yucatán.
Rodolfo Menéndez de la Peña, historian, describes the flag of Yucatán: "The flag of Yucatán was divided into two parts: green on left, the right, with three divisions, red up and down and white in the middle. In the green field highlighted, five stars, symbolizing the five departments that Yucatan was divided by decree of November 30, 1840: Mérida, Izamal, Valladolid, Tekax and Campeche."
The flag doesn't have official recognition in the state, however, it has a strong recognition among the people of the state. De facto state flag, in any case, according to a convention led by former president Ernesto Zedillo, is a white flag with the shield of the state in the middle.
The Caste War of Yucatán was a conflict that lasted from 1847 to 1901. It began with the revolt of native Maya people led by Maya chiefs Jacinto Pat and Cecilio Chi, against the population of European descent called "Yucatecos", who had political and economic control. A lengthy war ensued between the Yucateco forces in the north-west of the Yucatán and the independent Maya in the south-east. It officially ended with the occupation of the Maya capital of Chan Santa Cruz by the Mexican army in 1901, although skirmishes with villages and small settlements that refused to acknowledge Mexican control continued for over another decade.
Adam Jones wrote: "This ferocious race war featured genocidal atrocities on both sides, with up to 200,000 killed."
Because of the conflict, on November 24, 1902, Yucatán had a second territorial division when Porfirio Díaz decreed the creation of the Federal Territory of Quintana Roo, with capital in the port of Payo Obispo (today Chetumal). In little more than half a century, Yucatán lost more than two thirds of its original territory.
In the late 19th century, the henequen industry grew to unprecedented power in the Yucatan. The henequen grown in the Yucatan was used around the world for rope and twine, and became known as sisal rope, named after the seaside town of Sisal, from where the rope was shipped. Today Sisal is a sleepy fishing village, being rediscovered by locals and visitors as a beach location for vacation homes. The henequen industry provided financial autonomy to the isolated Yucatán. The fiber of Henequén plant (known as sosquil (maya: sos kí)) was manufactured into twine and rope, used in riggings, string, sacks, rugs, and many other items. It became the chief export item of the Yucatán, making many local families very wealthy. That wealth is today evident in the architecture of the colonial city of Mérida, as well as in the more than 150 haciendas that are spread throughout the Yucatán Peninsula.
Korean immigration to Mexico began in 1905. The first Korean migrants settled in Yucatán as workers in henequen plantations. Labour brokers began advertising in newspapers in the Korean port city of Incheon in 1904 for workers willing to go to Mexico to work on henequen plantations for four- or five-year contracts. A total of more than one thousand were recruited and departed from Incheon on board a British cargo ship on 4 April 1905, despite efforts by the Korean government to block their departure. Once their contracts were up, most settled in Mexico, either continuing to work on henequen plantations or moving to various cities in the country.
Hundreds of prosperous haciendas abounded in the state until the advent of synthetic products after World War II, the cultivation of Henequén in other parts of the world and the self-serving actions of some of the leading henequen-growing families led to the gradual decline of the Yucatan's monopoly on the industry.
The incredible influx of wealth during that period from the henequn industry focused mainly on Mérida, the capital of Yucatán State. It allowed the city of Mérida to install street lights and a tram system even before Mexico City. It is said that in the early 20th century, the city had the largest number of millionaires per capita in the world. Today, Paseo de Montejo (inspired by the Parisian avenue Champs-Élysées), is lined with the elegant houses built during that time. These houses are mostly now renovated and serve as everything from private homes to banks, hotels and restaurants. Many of the haciendas today have also been renovated and now serve as private homes, event venues and upscale luxury hotels.
Until the mid-20th century most of Yucatán's contact with the outside world was by sea; trade with the US and Cuba, as well as Europe and other Caribbean islands, was more significant than that with the rest of Mexico. In the 1950s Yucatán was linked to the rest of Mexico by railway, followed by highway in the 1960s, ending the region's comparative isolation. Today Yucatán still demonstrates a unique culture from the rest of Mexico, including its own style of food.
Commercial jet airplanes began arriving in Mérida in the 1960s, and additional international airports were built first in Cozumel and then in the new planned resort community of Cancún in the 1980s, making tourism a major force in the economy of the Yucatán Peninsula.
The first Maya governor of Yucatán, Francisco Luna Kan, was elected in 1976.
Today, the Yucatán Peninsula is a major tourism destination, as well as home to one of the largest indigenous populations in Mexico, the Maya people.
The State of Yucatán is located on the Yucatán Peninsula. It borders the states of Campeche to the southwest, Quintana Roo to the east and southeast, and the Gulf of Mexico to the north and west. As a whole, the state is extremely flat with little or no topographic variation, with the exception of the Puuc hills, located in the southern portion of the state.
|Flora and fauna of Yucatán|
|Yucatan wren||White-tailed deer||Hawksbill sea turtle||American flamingo||Muscovy duck|
|Jaguar||Ocellated turkey||White-lipped peccary||Ocelot||Boa constrictor|
|Ceiba pentandra||Enterolobium cyclocarpum||Aloe vera||Cylindropuntia imbricata||Bixa orellana|
|Morelet's crocodile||Guatemalan black howler||Crotalus simus||Smalltooth sawfish||Ctenosaura similis|
Executive power rests in the governor of Yucatán, who is directly elected by the citizens, using a secret ballot, to a six-year term with no possibility of reelection. Legislative power rests in the Congress of Yucatán which is a unicameral legislature composed of 25 deputies. Judicial power is invested in the Superior Court of Justice of Yucatán.
The State of Yucatán is divided into 106 municipalities, each headed by a municipal president (mayor). Usually municipalities are named after the city that serves as municipal seat; e.g. the municipal seat of the Municipality of Mérida is the City of Mérida.
The most recent local election in Yucatán was held on June 7, 2015.
|Tourism in Yucatán|
|Chichen Itza||Uxmal||Dzibilchaltun||Ek' Balam||Kabah|
|Loltun, Oxkutzcab||Bolón-Chohol, Cuzamá||Dzitnup, Valladolid||Ik Kil, Kaua||Sacred Cenote, Chichen Itza|
|1||Mérida||Mérida Municipality||734.153||7||Umán||Umán Municipality||29.135|
|2||Kanasín||Kanasín Municipality||50.357||8||Tekax||Tekax Municipality||23.524|
|3||Valladolid||Valladolid Municipality||45.868||9||Hunucmá||Hunucmá Municipality||22.800|
|4||Tizimín||Tizimín Municipality||44.151||10||Motul||Motul Municipality||21.508|
|5||Progreso||Progreso Municipality||35.519||11||Oxkutzcab||Oxkutzcab Municipality||21.341|
|6||Ticul||Ticul Municipality||31.147||12||Peto||Peto Municipality||18.177|
The most widespread indigenous language of Yucatán is Yucatec Maya, spoken natively by approximately 800,000 people in Yucatán and adjacent Quintana Roo and Campeche, especially in rural areas. The Spanish spoken in Yucatán has lexical and some phonological borrowing from Mayan and employs many words of Mayan origin, such as purux ("fat"), tuch ("navel") and wixar ("urinate").
In 1905, 1,003 Korean immigrants, which included 802 men and 231 women and children, departed from the port of Chemulpo, Incheon aboard the ship Ilford to Salina Cruz, Oaxaca, Mexico. The journey took 45 days, after which they took a train to Coatzacoalcos, Veracruz. In the Veracruz port, another boat was taken to the port of Progreso with the final destination being the capital city of Mérida, Yucatan. They arrived in May 1905, with previously signed contracts for four years’ work as indentured laborers on the Yucatán henequen haciendas. Many of these Koreans were distributed throughout the Yucatán in 32 henequen haciendas. The town of Motul, Yucatan, located in the heart of the henequen zone, was a destination for many of the Korean immigrants. Subsequently, in 1909, at the end of their contracts, they began a new stage in which they scattered even further. Thus, the majority of those who came were single men who made or remade their family lives with Yucatecan especially Maya women. While Korean girls were much more subject to marriages arranged by Korean parents, males had greater freedom when it came to making a family. This rapid intermarriage by Koreans, coupled with geographic dispersal, prevented the establishment of close social networks among these migrants and therefore provided the basis for Korean descendants among the Yucatan Peninsula. After that 1905 ship, no further entries of Koreans into Mexico were recorded until many years later, leading to a new community of Koreans with completely different characteristics from those who entered in 1905.
Yucatecan food is its own unique style and is very different from what most people would consider Mexican food. It includes influences from the local Mayan culture, as well as Caribbean, European (Spanish), (North) African, and Middle Eastern cultures, as well as influence from the cuisine of other parts of Mexico.
There are many regional dishes. Some of them are:
The Yucatán State Police is the law enforcement agency inside the state. The security in the interior of the state was praised multiple times by former president Felipe Calderón Hinojosa, local and foreign businessmen, as well as by governor Ivonne Ortega Pacheco.
... la bandera yucateca se dividió en dos campos: a la izquierda, uno de color verde, y a la derecha, otro con tres divisiones, de color rojo arriba y abajo y blanco en medio. En el campo o lienzo verde de la bandera se destacaban cinco hermosas estrellas que simbolizaban a los cinco departamentos en que se dividía Yucatán por Decreto del 30 de noviembre de 1840, a saber: Mérida, Izamal, Valladolid, Tekax y Campeche...
Acanceh is an ancient Maya archaeological site located in Mexico's Yucatán State. The modern town of Acanceh, where the ruins are located, is 21 kilometers from Mérida, the capital of Yucatán. Acanceh means "groan of the deer" in the Yucatec Maya language.The population of Acanceh is almost solely Maya., with the Mayan language predominantly spoken.Campeche
Campeche (Spanish pronunciation: [kamˈpe.tʃe] (listen)), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Campeche (Spanish: Estado Libre y Soberano de Campeche), is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, comprise the 32 Federal Entities of Mexico. Located in southeast Mexico, it is bordered by the states of Tabasco to the southwest, Yucatán to the northeast, and Quintana Roo to the east; to the southeast by the Orange Walk district of Belize, and by the Petén department of Guatemala to the south. It has a coastline to the west with the Gulf of Mexico. The state capital, also called Campeche, was declared a World Heritage Site in 1997. The formation of the state began with the city, which was founded in 1540 as the Spanish began the conquest of the Yucatán Peninsula. During the colonial period, the city was a rich and important port, but declined after Mexico's independence. Campeche was part of the province of Yucatán but split off in the mid-19th century, mostly due to political friction with the city of Mérida. Much of the state's recent economic revival is due to the finding of petroleum offshore in the 1970s, which has made the coastal cities of Campeche and Ciudad del Carmen important economic centers. The state has important Mayan and colonial sites; however, these are not as well-known or visited as others in the Yucatán.
The state's executive power rests in the governor of Campeche and the legislative power rests in the Congress of Campeche which is a unicameral legislature composed of 35 deputies.Captaincy General of Yucatán
The Captaincy General of Yucatán (Spanish: Capitanía General de Yucatán) was an administrative district of colonial Spain, created in 1617 to provide more autonomy for the Yucatán Peninsula, previously ruled directly by a simple governor under the jurisdiction of Audiencia of Mexico. Its creation was part of the, ultimately futile, Habsburg attempt in the late 16th century to prevent incursion into the Caribbean by foreign powers, which also involved the establishment of Captaincies General in Puerto Rico, Cuba, and neighboring Guatemala. With the addition of the title of captain general to the governor of Yucatán, the province gained greater autonomy in administration and military matters. Unlike in most areas of Spanish America, no formal corregidores were used in Yucatán, and instead the governor-captain general relied on other subordinate officials to handle the oversight of local districts. The Captaincy General remained part of the Viceroyalty of New Spain, with the viceroy retaining the right to oversee the province's governance, when it was deemed necessary, and the Audiencia of Mexico taking judicial cases in appeal. The province and captaincy general covered the territory that today are the States of Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco, Yucatán, and nominally the northern areas of Petén and Belize.
Law IV ("Que el Governador de Yucatan guarde las ordenes del Virrey de Nueva España") of Title I ("De los Terminos, Division, y Agregación de las Governaciones") of Book V of the Recopilación de Leyes de Indias of 1680 reproduces the November 2, 1627 royal decree (real cédula) of Philip V, which established the nature of the relationship between the Governor of Yucatán and the Viceroy of New Spain: "It is convenient that the governors and captain generals of the Province of Yucatán, precisely and in a timely manner fulfill the orders that the viceroys of New Spain give them. And we order that the governors obey them and fulfill them."In 1786, as part of the Bourbon Reforms the Spanish Crown established an Intendancy of Yucatán covering the same area as the Province. The intendancy took control of government and military finances and had broad powers to promote the local economy.Cenote
A cenote (English: or ; American Spanish: [seˈnote]) is a natural pit, or sinkhole, resulting from the collapse of limestone bedrock that exposes groundwater underneath. Especially associated with the Yucatán Peninsula of Mexico, cenotes were sometimes used by the ancient Maya for sacrificial offerings.
The term derives from a word used by the low-land Yucatec Maya—ts'onot—to refer to any location with accessible groundwater. Cenotes are common geological forms in low latitude regions, particularly on islands, coastlines, and platforms with young post-Paleozoic limestones that have little soil development.Chichen Itza
Chichen Itza was a large pre-Columbian city built by the Maya people of the Terminal Classic period. The archaeological site is located in Tinúm Municipality, Yucatán State, Mexico.Chichen Itza was a major focal point in the Northern Maya Lowlands from the Late Classic (c. AD 600–900) through the Terminal Classic (c. AD 800–900) and into the early portion of the Postclassic period (c. AD 900–1200). The site exhibits a multitude of architectural styles, reminiscent of styles seen in central Mexico and of the Puuc and Chenes styles of the Northern Maya lowlands. The presence of central Mexican styles was once thought to have been representative of direct migration or even conquest from central Mexico, but most contemporary interpretations view the presence of these non-Maya styles more as the result of cultural diffusion.
Chichen Itza was one of the largest Maya cities and it was likely to have been one of the mythical great cities, or Tollans, referred to in later Mesoamerican literature. The city may have had the most diverse population in the Maya world, a factor that could have contributed to the variety of architectural styles at the site.The ruins of Chichen Itza are federal property, and the site's stewardship is maintained by Mexico's Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (National Institute of Anthropology and History). The land under the monuments had been privately owned until 29 March 2010, when it was purchased by the state of Yucatán.Chichen Itza is one of the most visited archaeological sites in Mexico with over 2.6 million tourists in 2017.Chicxulub crater
The Chicxulub crater (; Mayan: [tʃʼikʃuluɓ]) is an impact crater buried underneath the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico. Its center is located near the town of Chicxulub, after which the crater is named. It was formed by a large asteroid or comet about 11 to 81 kilometres (6.8 to 50.3 miles) in diameter, the Chicxulub impactor, striking the Earth. The date of the impact coincides precisely with the Cretaceous–Paleogene boundary (K–Pg boundary), slightly less than 66 million years ago, and a widely accepted theory is that worldwide climate disruption from the event was the cause of the Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction event, a mass extinction in which 75% of plant and animal species on Earth became extinct, including all non-avian dinosaurs.
The crater is estimated to be 150 kilometres (93 miles) in diameter and 20 km (12 mi) in depth, well into the continental crust of the region of about 10–30 km (6.2–18.6 mi) depth. It is the second largest confirmed impact structure on Earth and the only one whose peak ring is intact and directly accessible for scientific research.The crater was discovered by Antonio Camargo and Glen Penfield, geophysicists who had been looking for petroleum in the Yucatán during the late 1970s. Penfield was initially unable to obtain evidence that the geological feature was a crater and gave up his search. Later, through contact with Alan Hildebrand in 1990, Penfield obtained samples that suggested it was an impact feature. Evidence for the impact origin of the crater includes shocked quartz, a gravity anomaly, and tektites in surrounding areas.
In 2016, a scientific drilling project drilled deep into the peak ring of the impact crater, hundreds of meters below the current sea floor, to obtain rock core samples from the impact itself. The discoveries were widely seen as confirming current theories related to both the crater impact and its effects.Dzibilchaltun
Dzibilchaltún (Yucatec: Ts'íibil Cháaltun, [d̥z̥ʼiː˧˥biɭ tɕʰɒːl˦˥tuŋ]) is a Maya archaeological site in the Mexican state of Yucatán, approximately 10 miles (16 km) north of state capital Mérida.Izamal
Izamal (Spanish [isama'l] ) is a small city in the Mexican state of Yucatán, 72 km (about 40 miles) east of state capital Mérida, in southern Mexico.
Izamal was continuously occupied throughout most of Mesoamerican chronology; in 2000, the city's estimated population was 15,000 people. Izamal is known in Yucatán as the Yellow City (most of its buildings are painted yellow) and the City of Hills (that actually are the remains of ancient temple pyramids).List of Maya sites
This list of Maya sites is an alphabetical listing of a number of significant archaeological sites associated with the Maya civilization of pre-Columbian Mesoamerica.
The peoples and cultures which comprised the Maya civilization spanned more than 2,500 years of Mesoamerican history, in the region of southern Mesoamerica which incorporates the present-day nations of Guatemala and Belize, much of Honduras and El Salvador, and the southeastern states of Mexico from the Isthmus of Tehuantepec eastwards, including the entire Yucatán Peninsula.
Throughout this region, many hundreds of Maya sites have been documented in at least some form by archaeological surveys and investigations, while the numbers of smaller/uninvestigated (or unknown) sites are so numerous (one study has documented over 4,400 Maya sites) that no complete archaeological list has yet been made. The listing which appears here is necessarily incomplete, however it contains notable sites drawn from several large and ongoing surveys, such as the Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions (CMHI) and other sources (see References).
Note : Ignore the Spanish definite article "El" or "La" (and their plurals "Los" and "Las") when looking for a site in the alphabetical listing e.g. for El Mirador, look under M rather than E.List of states of Mexico
The states of Mexico are first-level administrative territorial entities of the country of Mexico, which officially is named United Mexican States. There are 31 states and one federal entity in Mexico. Mexico City is a federal entity with a level of autonomy comparable to that of a state, but is not a state itself.The states are further divided into municipalities.Maní, Yucatán
Maní is a small city in Maní Municipality in the central region of the Yucatán Peninsula, in the Mexican state of Yucatán. It is about 100 km to the south south-east of Mérida, Yucatán, some 16 km east of Ticul. The village of Tipikal lies 6 km to the east.The population is currently around 4000, similar now to the estimated 4500 in the 16th century.Martín de Ursúa
Martín de Ursúa (or Urzúa) y Arizmendi (Spanish pronunciation: [maɾˈtin de uɾˈsu.a]; February 22, 1653 – February 4, 1715), Count of Lizárraga and of Castillo, was a Spanish Basque conquistador in Central America during the late colonial period of New Spain. Born in Olóriz, Navarre, he is noted for leading the 1696–97 expeditionary force which resulted in the fall of the last significant independent Maya stronghold, Nojpetén, located on an island in Lake Petén Itzá in the northern Petén Basin region of present-day Guatemala. He served as governor of the Yucatán until 1708, when he was named Governor-General of the Philippines. Around the time that he was named to that post, he was made a knight of the Order of Santiago. He died in Manila in 1715.Ursúa arrived in Mexico around 1680 and initially served as a lawyer in Mexico City, until 1692. He used this period to cement relationships with colonial officials in Yucatán. In 1692 he was appointed to be governor of Yucatán, with his term to begin in 1698. By 1694 he had been appointed as alcalde ordinario (a Spanish colonial official) of Mexico City. Ursúa took office in Yucatán four years earlier than planned, becoming acting governor on 17 December 1694.Maya peoples
The Maya peoples () are an ethnolinguistic group of indigenous peoples of Mesoamerica. They inhabit southern Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, El Salvador and Honduras. The overarching term "Maya" is a collective designation that includes the peoples of the region which share some degree of cultural and linguistic heritage; however, the term embraces many distinct populations, societies and ethnic groups that each have their own particular traditions, cultures and historical identity.
It is estimated that six million Maya were living in this area at the start of the 21st century. Guatemala, Southern Mexico and the Yucatán Peninsula, Belize, El Salvador and Western Honduras have managed to maintain numerous remnants of their ancient cultural heritage. Some are quite integrated into the majority hispanicized mestizo cultures of the nations in which they reside, while others continue a more traditional, culturally distinct life, often speaking one of the Mayan languages as a primary language.
The largest populations of contemporary Maya inhabit Guatemala, Belize, and the western portions of Honduras and El Salvador, as well as large segments of population within the Mexican states of Yucatán, Campeche, Quintana Roo, Tabasco and Chiapas.Mérida, Yucatán
Mérida (Spanish pronunciation: [ˈmeɾiða] (listen)) is the capital and largest city in Yucatan state in Mexico, as well as the largest city of the Yucatán Peninsula. The city is located in the northwest part of the state, about 35 kilometres (22 miles) off the coast of the Gulf of Mexico. The city is also the municipal seat of the Municipality of Mérida, which includes the city and the areas around it.
According to the 2015 census, the population of Mérida was 892,363, ranking 14th among the most populous Mexican cities. The Greater Mérida metropolitan area includes the municipalities of Mérida, Umán and Kanasín and had a population of 1,035,238 in the 2010 census. The municipality's area is 858.41 km2 (331.43 sq mi). Among the four cities that share the same name around the world, it is the largest -the other three being in Spain, Venezuela, and the Philippines.
The city, similarly to much of the state, has heavy Mayan, Spanish, French, British, Lebanese and to a lesser extent Dutch influences. Mérida has the highest percentage of indigenous population within any large city in Mexico. The percentage of the indigenous people was approximately 60% of all inhabitants being of Maya ethnicity.Quintana Roo
Quintana Roo (Spanish pronunciation: [kinˈtana ˈro]), officially the Free and Sovereign State of Quintana Roo (Spanish: Estado Libre y Soberano de Quintana Roo), is one of the 31 states which, with the Federal District, make up the 32 federal entities of Mexico. It is divided into 11 municipalities and its capital city is Chetumal.
Quintana Roo is located on the eastern part of the Yucatán Peninsula and is bordered by the states of Campeche to the west and Yucatán to the northwest, and by the Orange Walk and Corozal districts of Belize, along with an offshore borderline with Belize District to the south. As Mexico's easternmost state, Quintana Roo has a coastline to the east with the Caribbean Sea and to the north with the Gulf of Mexico. The state previously covered 44,705 square kilometers (17,261 sq mi) and shared a small border with Guatemala in the southwest of the state. However in 2013, Mexico's Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation resolved the boundary dispute between Quintana Roo, Campeche, and Yucatán stemming from the creation of the Calakmul municipality by Campeche in 1997, siding with Campeche and thereby benefiting Yucatán.Quintana Roo is the home of the city of Cancún, the islands of Cozumel and Isla Mujeres, and the towns of Bacalar, Playa del Carmen and Akumal, as well as the ancient Maya ruins of Chacchoben, Cobá, Kohunlich, Muyil, Tulum, Xel-Há, and Xcaret. The Sian Ka'an biosphere reserve is also located in the state.
The statewide population is expanding at a rapid rate due to the construction of hotels and the demand for workers. Many migrants come from Yucatán, Campeche, Tabasco, and Veracruz. The state is frequently hit by severe hurricanes due to its exposed location, the most recent and severe being Hurricane Dean in 2007, which made landfall with sustained winds of 280 km/h (170 mph), with gusts up to 320 km/h (200 mph).Spanish conquest of Yucatán
The Spanish conquest of Yucatán was the campaign undertaken by the Spanish conquistadores against the Late Postclassic Maya states and polities in the Yucatán Peninsula, a vast limestone plain covering south-eastern Mexico, northern Guatemala, and all of Belize. The Spanish conquest of the Yucatán Peninsula was hindered by its politically fragmented state. The Spanish engaged in a strategy of concentrating native populations in newly founded colonial towns. Native resistance to the new nucleated settlements took the form of the flight into inaccessible regions such as the forest or joining neighbouring Maya groups that had not yet submitted to the Spanish. Among the Maya, ambush was a favoured tactic. Spanish weaponry included broadswords, rapiers, lances, pikes, halberds, crossbows, matchlocks and light artillery. Maya warriors fought with flint-tipped spears, bows and arrows and stones, and wore padded cotton armour to protect themselves. The Spanish introduced a number of Old World diseases previously unknown in the Americas, initiating devastating plagues that swept through the native populations.
The first encounter with the Yucatec Maya may have occurred in 1502, when the fourth voyage of Christopher Columbus came across a large trading canoe off Honduras. In 1511, Spanish survivors of the shipwrecked caravel called Santa María de la Barca sought refuge among native groups along the eastern coast of the peninsula. Hernán Cortés made contact with two survivors, Gerónimo de Aguilar and Gonzalo Guerrero, six years later. In 1517, Francisco Hernández de Córdoba made landfall on the tip of the peninsula. His expedition continued along the coast and suffered heavy losses in a pitched battle at Champotón, forcing a retreat to Cuba. Juan de Grijalva explored the coast in 1518, and heard tales of the wealthy Aztec Empire further west. As a result of these rumours, Hernán Cortés set sail with another fleet. From Cozumel he continued around the peninsula to Tabasco where he fought a battle at Potonchán; from there Cortés continued onward to conquer the Aztec Empire. In 1524, Cortés led a sizeable expedition to Honduras, cutting across southern Campeche, and through Petén in what is now northern Guatemala. In 1527 Francisco de Montejo set sail from Spain with a small fleet. He left garrisons on the east coast, and subjugated the northeast of the peninsula. Montejo then returned to the east to find his garrisons had almost been eliminated; he used a supply ship to explore southwards before looping back around the entire peninsula to central Mexico. Montejo pacified Tabasco with the aid of his son, also named Francisco de Montejo.
In 1531 the Spanish moved their base of operations to Campeche, where they repulsed a significant Maya attack. After this battle, the Spanish founded a town at Chichen Itza in the north. Montejo carved up the province amongst his soldiers. In mid-1533 the local Maya rebelled and laid siege to the small Spanish garrison, which was forced to flee. Towards the end of 1534, or the beginning of 1535, the Spanish retreated from Campeche to Veracruz. In 1535, peaceful attempts by the Franciscan Order to incorporate Yucatán into the Spanish Empire failed after a renewed Spanish military presence at Champotón forced the friars out. Champotón was by now the last Spanish outpost in Yucatán, isolated among a hostile population. In 1541–42 the first permanent Spanish town councils in the entire peninsula were founded at Campeche and Mérida. When the powerful lord of Mani converted to the Roman Catholic religion, his submission to Spain and conversion to Christianity encouraged the lords of the western provinces to accept Spanish rule. In late 1546 an alliance of eastern provinces launched an unsuccessful uprising against the Spanish. The eastern Maya were defeated in a single battle, which marked the final conquest of the northern portion of the Yucatán Peninsula.
The polities of Petén in the south remained independent and received many refugees fleeing from Spanish jurisdiction. In 1618 and in 1619 two unsuccessful Franciscan missions attempted the peaceful conversion of the still pagan Itza. In 1622 the Itza slaughtered two Spanish parties trying to reach their capital Nojpetén. These events ended all Spanish attempts to contact the Itza until 1695. Over the course of 1695 and 1696 a number of Spanish expeditions attempted to reach Nojpetén from the mutually independent Spanish colonies in Yucatán and Guatemala. In early 1695 the Spanish began to build a road from Campeche south towards Petén and activity intensified, sometimes with significant losses on the part of the Spanish. Martín de Urzúa y Arizmendi, governor of Yucatán, launched an assault upon Nojpetén in March 1697; the city fell after a brief battle. With the defeat of the Itza, the last independent and unconquered native kingdom in the Americas fell to the Spanish.Valladolid, Yucatán
Valladolid (Saki' in Maya) (Spanish ) is a city located in the eastern part of the Mexican state of Yucatán. It is the seat of Valladolid Municipality.
As of the 2010 census the population of the city was 45,868 inhabitants (the third-largest community in the state), and that of the municipality was 74,217. The municipality has an areal extent of 945.22 km² (364.95 sq mi) and includes many outlying communities, the largest of which are Popolá, Kanxoc, Yalcobá, and Xocén. Valladolid is located approximately 160 km east of the state capital Mérida, 40 km east of Chichen Itza, and 150 km west of Cancun.
On August 30, 2012, Valladolid became part of the Pueblo Mágico promotional initiative led by the Mexican tourism department.Yucatec Maya language
Yucatec Maya (endonym: Maya; Yukatek Maya in the revised orthography of the Academia de Lenguas Mayas de Guatemala), called mayaʼ tʼàan (Mayan pronunciation: [majaʔˈtʼàːn], lit. "Maya speech") by its speakers, is a Mayan language spoken in the Yucatán Peninsula and northern Belize. To native speakers, the proper name is Maya and it is known only as Maya. The qualifier "Yucatec" is a tag linguists use to distinguish it from other Mayan languages (such as Kʼicheʼ and Itzaʼ). Thus the use of the term Yucatec Maya to refer to the language is scientific jargon or nomenclature.In the Mexican states of Yucatán, some parts of Campeche, Tabasco, Chiapas, and Quintana Roo, Maya remains many speakers' first language today, with 800,000 speakers. There are 6,000 speakers in Belize.Yucatán Peninsula
The Yucatán Peninsula (; Spanish: Península de Yucatán), in southeastern Mexico, separates the Caribbean Sea from the Gulf of Mexico, with the northern coastline on the Yucatán Channel. The peninsula lies east of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, a northwestern geographic partition separating the region of Central America from the rest of North America. It is approximately 181,000 km2 (70,000 sq mi) in area, and is almost entirely composed of limestone.