chapter  Chapter Forty-One
19 Pages

The structures of everyday life in the Postclassic urban setting of Mayapan

WithMarilyn A. Masson, Timothy S. Hare

Archaeological research at the city of Mayapan has contributed since the 1950s to the study of everyday life for Pre-Columbian Maya peoples. This city was the capital of the Maya world of its time, the Postclassic era, from AD 1150–1450. It represents one of the most urbanized political centers of the Yucatan peninsula due to its unusually dense concentration of dwellings within a great wall that spanned 9.1 km in circumference. Despite its late date and urban nature, daily life at Mayapan had much in common with earlier cities, including the importance of greenspace providing a cultivated landscape, and the relationships of neighborhoods to monumental material markers of community and city-wide identity. Household archaeology at this city attests to the complex work lives, variable degrees of wealth, natural resource niche exploitation, and important trade dependencies between towns across the peninsula.