Costa Maya, Xcalak and Mahahual (Majahual) Visitors pages - Chacchoben |
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Most likely the first inhabitants of the region settled down during the late pre-classic period (ca. 200 bc) in small villages around the lakes. It is not until the early classic period that the site further and the main buildings with governmental function were raised. During the subsequent periods the area was continuously inhabited. The main constructive activity seems to have decreased around year 700 ac. Later the area was virtually abandont. Again to be partually populated during the Late Post Classic period.

The two piramids contain hieroglyphic inscriptions. It can be assumed that Chacchoben was the greater site off some regional capital of the area of the Petén. Judging by the architectonic style of its constructions, which displays the remetidas of the cloth in buildings of later times and cleared corners in those of later construction with the typical socle adjustment, between street and slope in apron, as well as, the recovered materials to the date, that displays a clear similarity with the documented ones in sites of the north of Belize more than with sites of the north of Yucatan.

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Chacchoben Edificio 24The exploration of the site began in 1994. Since then some of the most important buildings that form the nucleus of the complex have been cleared. This extends to an approximated area of 70 hectares where sets of structures of different ranks are distributed. Between the lager structures sets of denominated parts like great plinth, the routes and group II can be found. The architectonic groups was designed for civil and religious use. This use is confirmed by the great amount of recovered late censers in the superior part of the great plinth and in both main buildings that crowns it. The great plinth had to be the main scene of pubic ceremonial and relegious activities.

Chacchoben Las ViasIn one of the platforms that forms the access was erected in the beginning of the agricultural period. It mainly seems to have worked like a marker of calender dates associated with the equinoxes and solstices. In a broader view the site had to constitute a greater establishment under the hegemony of some greater large city of low territories of the south.

In the facades of the great plinth two construction levels can be found that repeat the same architectonic pattern. In the final stage it presented three staggered bodies on which the ceremonial buildings rest. Probably both small buildings that are at the end off of the access platforms had the function of restricting the passage to temple II and the sacred space that was represented by the surface of the great plinth. One of the latest constructions is the well-known leaning temple, which was built on the steps of temple I. This was built when the site was revitalized as a place of veneration to the supervisory deities. It is thought to allow the continuity of the life and the reproduction of vital cycles in the beliefs of their inhabitants. More likely it constituted the threshold by which the initiates could make a contact with the enemy between the asylum and the land. Possibly also it served like astronomical indicator of important dates.

The main building of the set of the routes originally was constructed with the characteristic piramidal shape. This structure was modified to also contain a patio that presents a central altar in the interior. In here a pictorial representation cab be found of the cycles of the sun and of Venus, recreating, the concept of the four courses, so important in the Mayan thought.

Besides these buildings other unexplored great constructions can be found. One of the excellent characteristics of the establishment is the presence of monolithic circular altars and wakes. One of the altars shows eroded hieroglyphic texts.

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