The ancient Maya lived in the sub-tropical area of Mesoamerica that is now Guatemala, the Yucatan peninsula of Mexico, western Honduras, Belize, and El Salvador. They flourished in the Classic period of Mesoamerican history when they were living in city-states characterized by:
- strong kings,
- very impressive astronomical and mathematical calculations, including:
- an accurate calendar
- a concept of zero (used as a place holder in their base 20 counting system, notably in the vague calendar)
- tables of eclipses,
- certain religious practices, including human sacrifice,
- monumental buildings, including pyramids,
- reservoirs and terracing for control of the water supply,
- hieroglyphic writing, and
- continual warfare.
The Maya are also credited with creating a ball game
precursor of soccer.
Most of the cities of the Maya were abandoned by the end of the ninth century.
Read more about the Maya
Two of the major cities of the Maya were located at:
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