chapter  Chapter Nineteen
20 Pages

The Maya city of Caracol, Belize

The integration of an anthropogenic landscape
WithArlen F. Chase, Diane Z. Chase, Adrian S. Z. Chase

Caracol provides a detailed example of how a southern Lowland Maya city was composed. Over three decades of archaeological research combined with LiDAR data provide information on the city and its anthropogenic landscape. The city integrated the epicentral public architecture with a dendritic causeway system that tied together public plazas utilized as markets that were embedded throughout the urban environment. The landscape that surrounded this infrastructure was composed of constructed agricultural terraces interspersed with residential plazuela groups. The archaeological data from Caracol provide a more comprehensive view of ancient Maya urbanism than previously had been gained from earlier archaeological research in the southern Lowlands.