Ancient Maya women had an important role in society: beyond propagating the culture through bearing and raising children, Maya women participated in economic, governmental and farming activities. Women play a significant role in rituals, cooking food for consumption and sacrifice.
In the Yucatan, for example, the ‘ahmen’ of the Maya people, some of whom were responsible for medicines and cures, became the new village priests. These are now known as the Maya (n) Shaman , and the reason why they are celebrated as great healers. The importance of the Shaman in today’s society cannot be overlooked.
During the Classic period, at least five Mayan women became queens as per the verified historical data of the Mayans . Of these five, some because queens because no male heir of the royal family was present to take control of the throne.
Blood was viewed as a potent source of nourishment for the Maya deities, and the sacrifice of a living creature was a powerful blood offering. By extension, the sacrifice of a human life was the ultimate offering of blood to the gods, and the most important Maya rituals culminated in human sacrifice .
The Maya had a system of serfdom and slavery . However, unwanted orphan children became slaves and were sometimes sacrificed during religious rituals. Slaves were usually sacrificed when their owners died so that they could continue in their service after death.
Scholars have suggested a number of potential reasons for the downfall of Maya civilization in the southern lowlands, including overpopulation, environmental degradation, warfare, shifting trade routes and extended drought. It’s likely that a complex combination of factors was behind the collapse.
The Maya have lived in Central America for many centuries. They are one of the many Precolumbian native peoples of Mesoamerica . In the past and today they occupy Guatemala, adjacent portions of Chiapas and Tabasco, the whole of the Yucatan Peninsula, Belize, and the western edges of Honduras and Salvador.
Maya marriages were frequently arranged by matchmakers, and the father of the groom had to approve the match. A dowry was required from the groom’s family, which consisted of clothing and household articles for the bride and groom. Marriage ceremonies were performed by a priest in the home of the bride’s father.
Classic Maya Rulers. While there is little evidence of monarchies in early Maya cities, the Classic period saw the rise of one legendary revered king. The rule of K’inich Janaab ‘ Pakal the Great, or Janaab’ Pakal I, of the Late-classic city of Palenque was one of great acclaim.
|Queen of Tenochtitlan and Ecatepec|
Where did the Maya live? Mayan civilization occupied much of the northwestern part of the isthmus of Central America, from Chiapas and Yucatán, now part of southern Mexico , through Guatemala , Honduras , Belize , and El Salvador and into Nicaragua.