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At its peak around 500-600 A.D., Teotihuacan contained perhaps 200,000 people. It was a well planned city covering nearly eight square miles and larger and more advanced than any European city of the time. Its civilization was contemporary with that of ancient Rome , and lasted longer - more than 500 years.

MYSTIC PLACES: Teotihuacan, Mexico

History | Pyramids Comparison | Celestial Alignments | Books & ArticlesRelated  Links
Pyramid of the Sun  |  Pyramid of the Moon  |  Ciudadela 


Teotihuacan, Introduction

Teotihuacan means 'The City of the Gods", or "Where Men Become Gods" (in Nahuatl). It is located in the valley of the same name 30 miles north of Mexico City. 


Teotihuacan Location:

19° 40' N   98° 52' W

Image courtesy of the GoogleEarth [ http://earth.google.com ]


The above satellite image of ancient ruins of Teotihuacan
has been generated by
Go to Google Earth Home

 


Interactive Google Earth satellite map of Teotihuacan

Below is an interactive Google Earth satellite map of Teotihuacan.
Use the buttons on the map to zoom in; drag the map with your mouse to move around.

 


Teotihuacan used to be a thriving city and ceremonial center that predated the Aztecs by several centuries. Most likely it was Mexico's biggest ancient city at its peak and the sixth largest city in the world in AD 600.  Teotihuacan began declining sharply around 650 AD, and was almost completely abandoned around 750 AD. No one knows why.

   

At its peak around 500-600 A.D., Teotihuacan contained perhaps 200,000 people. It was a well planned city covering nearly eight square miles and larger and more advanced than any European city of the time. Its civilization was contemporary with that of ancient Rome , and lasted longer - more than 500 years.

Though archaeologists have long been fascinated with the site, Teotihuacan's culture and history are still largely mysterious. The civilization left massive ruins, but no trace has yet been found of a writing system and very little is known for sure about its inhabitants, who were succeeded first by the Toltecs and then by the Aztecs.
The Aztecs did not live in the city, but gave the place and its major structures their current names. They considered it the "Place of the Gods" - a place where, they believed, the current world was created.


History of Teotihuacan

  • 100 BC - 0 AD Proto-Teotihuacan (two small hamlets in northern pocket of Valley of Mexico, population = 5000)
  • 0 BC - 150 AD Teotihuacan I - (Avenue of the Dead, Pyramid of the Sun established)
  • 150 AD - 300 AD Teotihuacan II - (Grid pattern established)
  • 300 AD - 650 AD Teotihuacan III - (Pinacle of development, population = 85,000-200,000)
  • 650 AD - 750 AD Teotihuacan IV - Decline and fall

Besides the major ceremonial pyramids, there were also palaces and temples, especially near the north end of the city surrounding the plaza in front of the Pyramid of the Moon. These included the Palace of Quetzalcoatl, the Butterfly Palace, the Temple of the Feathered Conches, and the Palace of the Jaguars. The sophistication and artistry of the Teotihuacanos can be seen everywhere in the magnificent murals and stone carvings which adorn the walls of the palaces and apartment compounds.

The city met its end around 700 AD through deliberate destruction and burning by the hand of unknown invaders. Although a century earlier, around AD 600, almost all of Teotihuacan's influence over the rest of Mesoamerica had ceased, indicating some sort of internal malaise or decline before the destruction.

The first strains appeared about AD 650. A century later, Teotihuacan was a shadow of its former self. The population had declined so rapidly that the once-proud city was now little more than a series of hamlets extending over an area of about a square kilometer.

Some great catastrophe apparently struck the city in AD 700, reducing its population to below 70,000. Many of its people moved eastward. The city was deliberately burnt and destroyed. Over the years, its buildings collapsed and the pyramids became overgrown with dense vegetation.

Teotihuacan's decline was almost as rapid as its rise to prominence. Even so, eight centuries later, Teotihuacan was still revered far and wide as an intensely sacred place. But no one remembered who had built it or that tens of thousands of people had once lived there.

Away from the Avenue of the Dead, the city continued to live on for another two centuries, although the population of Teotihuacan sunk to only a quarter of its former total. Some sort of crisis overtook all the Classic civilizations of Mesoamerica (including the Maya) two centuries later, forcing them to abandon most of the cities. Some anthropologists believe the crisis may have been a lessening of the food supply caused by a drying out of the land and a loss of water sources to the area.

They speculate that this might have been brought about by a combination of natural climactic shift towards aridness that appears to have happened all over Mexico during the Classic period and the residents having cut all the timber in the valley. Originally there were cedar, cypress, pine, and oak forests; today there are cactus, yucca, agave, and California pepper trees. This change in vegetation indicates a big climate shift.

Although Teotihuacan presents a puzzle to archaeologists because it was a huge city that appears to have arisen without antecedents, the single most important fact which archaeologists have learned about the Classic period in Mexico was the supremacy of Teotihuacan. As the urbanized center of Mexico, with high population and tremendous production, its power was imposed through political and cultural means not only in its native highland habitat, but also along the tropical coasts, reaching even into the Maya area. It's trading and tribute empire was comparable with the Aztec empire that eventually followed it. All other Mexican states were partly or entirely dependent upon it for whatever achievements they attained.

When Teotihuacan fell, around 650 AD, the unifying force in Mesoamerica was gone, and with it widespread inter-regional trade. The Late Classic period saw increasing fractionalization among cultures. In the place of great states, petty kingdoms and militarism arose. From the highpoint of civilization at Teotihuacan, wars became the rule of the day, and for those unfortunate enough to be captured, sacrifice to the gods. Military empires, such as the Toltecs in the twelfth century AD (and later the Aztecs, starting in fourteenth century AD), which grew up from these warring factions were the cultures met by the Spanish in 1519 and largely eradicated by 1521.

Probably the reason that the Spanish were able to conquer the Aztecs in such a short amount of time had less to do with their skill as soldiers and more to do with the fact that the Spaniards physically resembled the descriptions in Aztec legends of the god Quetzalcoatl.

Quetzalcoatl, while symbolized as a feathered serpent, appears also to have been an historic figure - the man credited with bringing civilization, learning, culture, the calendar, mathematics, metallurgy, astronomy, masonry, architecture, productive agriculture, knowledge of the healing properties of plants, law, crafts, the arts, and peace to the native people. He is pictured as a quite different physical type than the natives - fair skinned and ruddy complexioned, long nosed, and with a long beard. He was said to have arrived by boat from the east, and sailed off again years later promising to return someday.


The Pyramid of the Sun

The Pyramid of the Sun, built in the 2nd century AD, dominates the landscape of the ancient city of Teotihuacan in Mexico.It is the third largest pyramid in the world and the largest in the Teotihuacan complex. 


Image Source: Mexico and Its Ancient Ruins - PHOTO CD

This sacred, truncated edifice stood 210 feet high and 650 feet square, a vast pyramid of rubble, adobe mud, and earth all faced with stone. A wooden temple on the summit of the pyramid afforded a spectacular view of the sprawling city below. 
The pyramid is actually a succession of pyramids built one on top the other over the centuries. The pyramids and many other structures at Teotihuacan are stepped, rather than smooth sided like the Egyptian pyramids, and the stones of which they are made are not as large as stones used to build Egyptian pyramids. 

At its peak time - most of Teotihuacan was plastered, and the pyramids were painted bright red.

Another fascinating feature of some of the pyramidal structures is that they contain a broad, thick layer of mica, which had to be brought from Brazil, over 2000 miles away! Mica is very flaky and fragile, yet it was brought in very large pieces from great distances (and without wheeled vehicles). Then the mica was used on an inner layer of the pyramid, not where it could be seen. Why? One characteristic of mica is that it is used as an insulator in electronic and electrical things. Was that its purpose here? Another mystery of Teotihuacan.

In 1971, a large cave underneath the Pyramid of the Sun was discovered which throws light on why the pyramid was constructed, and perhaps even on why Teotihuacan itself was built where it was.

The cave is actually a natural lava tube enlarged and elaborated in ancient times. The Teotihuacan Valley is a side valley of the Valley of Mexico and is one of a number of natural basins in the midst of an extensive region of volcanoes, therefore, there are many caves formed from the tubes of old lava flows.

The ancient use of the cave predates the pyramid. Aztec tradition placed the creation the Sun and Moon, and even the present universe, at Teotihuacan.

In Pre-Spanish Mexico, such caverns were symbolic wombs from which gods like the Sun and the Moon, and the ancestors of mankind, emerged in the mythological past. This is an immensely holy spot and the memory of its location persisted into Aztec times.


The Pyramid of the Moon

The Moon Pyramid is located at the northern end of the Avenue of the Dead, which is the main axis of the city. The pyramid, facing south, was built as the principal monument of the Moon Pyramid complex.


Image Source: Mexico and Its Ancient Ruins - PHOTO CD

The five-tiered platform was attached to the front of the Moon Pyramid. It is said that the present pyramid has interior structures within it. However, the pyramid still remains as one of the least understood major monuments in Teotihuacan.

     

The current excavation under the Pyramid of the Moon may be one of the best opportunities to answer questions about the civilization, as its underlying older, primitive loose rock construction may have protected buried secrets by making it difficult to dig under and resistant to looters.


The Ciudadela

The Ciudadela is a huge enclosure located at the geographic center of the city. It measures about 400 m on a side (i.e. about 160,000 m2), and the interior space is surrounded by four large platforms surmounted by pyramids.

 

The main plaza had a capacity of about 100,000 persons without much crowding (Cowgill 1983). One of the main functions of this closed huge space may have been ritual performance.


The Feathered Serpent Pyramid was the central pyramid of this large complex. Adorned with large sculptural heads, it was one of the most monumental structures in Teotihuacan. A major portion of the principal facade of the pyramid was later covered by the Adosada platform; afterward, the Feathered Serpent Pyramid was not clearly visible to people standing on the main plaza, as is shown in this photo.


Model of Ciudadela at Teotihuacan. Source: Wikipedia.org


Mysterious Layout of Teotihuacán

The city of Teotihuacán is meticulously laid out on a grid which is offset 15º.5 from the cardinal points. Its main avenue, the "Street of the Dead," runs from 15º.5 east of north to 15º.5 west of south, while its most impressive structure, the Pyramid of the Sun, is directly oriented to a point 15º.5 north of west -- the position at which the sun sets on August 13.

There is one very peculiar thing about the city of Teotihuacan; 
It is oriented 15.5 degrees east of True North!*
Click for more detail ( 322KB )

Teotihuacan satellite photo courtesy of © Space Imaging LLC
Click on the image above to enlarge (1.9MB JPG)
Do not miss this incredible website:
Space Imaging :: Satellite Image Gallery of Ancient Observatories..,

The sitting of the Pyramid of the Moon at the far end of the avenue was likewise done with such care that a sight-line directly over the top of the Pyramid of the Sun marks the meridian, thus allowing the priests of the city to fix the times of noon and midnight with complete accuracy.

Several attempts had been made to explain the layout of Teotihuacán by means of astronomy. The only credible solution to the mystery of the orientation of Teotihuacán (and other Mesoamerican cities and archaeological sites) is provided by Dr. Vincent H. Malmström in his 1997 volume, "Cycles of the Sun, Mysteries of the Moon: The Calendar in Mesoamerican Civilization" published by the University of Texas Press. Here (with his permission) is a link to Chapter 5 of his book where he presents the main gist of his argument.

_________________________________________________________

* 15.5 degrees "misalignment" - Related links:


Geometry of the sunset at Teotihuacan on Aug 13

The following images are the result of amazing hi-tech combination of satellite images with program called The Photographer’s Ephemeris which shows you the exact direction of where the sunrise and moonrise will be at any particular location and time using Google maps.


Pyramid of the Sun at Teotihuacan. Orange line shows sunset on Aug 13. Click to enlarge.
Image generated by The Photographer’s Ephemeris (TPE) -
stephentrainor.com/tools

The Ciudadela at Teotihuacan. Orange line shows sunset on Aug 13. Click to enlarge.
Image generated by The Photographer’s Ephemeris (TPE) - stephentrainor.com/tools

Don't miss related example:   Geometry of the sunset at Chichen Itza on the Vernal Equinox


HOT  The Photographer's Ephemeris

 
The Photographer’s Ephemeris (TPE) is a free application for Mac/Windows/Linux designed for landscape photographers. It shows you the exact direction of where the sunrise and moonrise will be at any particular location and time using Google maps. Landscape photographers typically wishing to plan their shoots around the times of sunrise/sunset or twilight, or alternatively when the moon is in a particular place or a particular phase. Click on the logo to learn more and download this free program.
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ORIENTATIONS AND ALIGNMENTS: MARKING TIME IN SPACE

The largest metropolis of the pre-Columbian New World, Teotihuacán numbered in its heyday perhaps as many as 200,000 inhabitants. It is meticulously laid out on a grid which is offset 15º.5 from the cardinal points. Thus, its main avenue, the "Street of the Dead," runs from 15º.5 east of north to 15º.5 west of south, while its most impressive structure, the Pyramid of the Sun, is directly oriented to a point 15º.5 north of west -- the position at which the sun sets on August 13. The siting of the Pyramid of the Moon at the far end of the avenue was likewise done with such care that a sight-line directly over the top of the Pyramid of the Sun marks the meridian, thus allowing the priests of the city to fix the times of noon and midnight with complete accuracy.

A brief examination of the ephemeris reveales that the sun passed through the latitude of 14º.8 N on April 30 on its way northward and again on August 13 on its way southward. That happens to be the latitude of Izapa, in southernmost Mexico, and August 13 happens to be the date that the Maya believed the world began -- and here we find that date commemorated in the layout of the largest pre-Columbian city ever to be constructed in the New World, a thousand kilometers and a thousand years away from where it all began.

A word about solsticial alignments in Mesoamerica: Even though the region extends through 10 degrees of latitude -- from about 13 to 23º N -- because it lies so near the equator, sun angles scarcely differ by more than a degree across the entire region, in other words, less than could be distinguished by someone practicing naked-eye astronomy as these people did. For all intents and purposes, the azimuth of the summer solstice sunrise can be equated to 65º throughout the region, or 25º north of east. Similarly, the winter solstice sunrise can be equated to 115º, or 25º south of east. Sunset positions on each of these days may be marked against the corresponding positions along the western horizon -- i.e., 295º, or 25º north of west for the summer solstice, and 245º, or 25º south of west for the winter solstice. Naturally, none of the Mesoamerican peoples reckoned in terms of angles or degrees, so although we express such measurements in these units, the alignments which they established were done solely through repeated observations in the field. It is, however, not inconceivable that, having once realized what the extreme points of the sun were, they made a graphic representation of its limits. If so, the resultant diagram would have approximated a recumbent cross -- a so-called Saint Andrew's cross -- which indeed has been recognized as one of the most frequently repeated artistic motifs used by the Olmecs.

Sometime during its six to eight centuries of existence, La Venta witnessed the construction of a new series of structures (the so-called Stirling Complex) near the southern end of its great plaza. Interestingly, when these structures were first mapped, they were shown to have deviated some 23º.5 from the site's axis, which, as we have explained, is aimed 8º west of north. The fact that this angle corresponds to the inclination of the earth's axis is probably strictly a coincidence, but in any case, it means that the walls of the Stirling Complex are oriented 15º.5 off of the cardinal points. Thus, in a northerly direction it has an azimuth of 15º.5, in an easterly direction it faces 105º.5, to the south the azimuth reads 195º.5, and to the west, 285º.5. Only the latter of these azimuths is of any interest, because it marks the sunset position on August 13 -- "the day that time began," according to the sacred almanac. Could this alignment be an architectural "reinforcement" of a topographic orientation toward Cerro San Martín and/or Cerro Santa Martha? If so, it could mean that by about 1000 B.C., priests at La Venta had come up with a formula for recording when the zenithal sun was passing overhead at Izapa!

(It should be noted that in a more recent survey of La Venta carried out by the National Institute for Archaeology and History [a copy of which is reproduced in Adams, 1991, 56 - 57], the structures of the Stirling Complex are shown to have the same axial alignment as the remainder of the site -- i.e., 8º west of north. If the original survey was in error, naturally the arguments presented above are no longer valid. However, this does not invalidate the discussion which follows for how the "formula" itself was derived.)

In reality, the formula was as simple as it was ingenious. The problem at San Lorenzo had been that the priests had no way of knowing when it was August 13, because in their part of the world the zenithal passage of the sun did not occur on that date. Thus, they had settled on using one of the solstices instead, because the date of the sun's turning point was the same everywhere, they had discovered. Whereas at San Lorenzo they were obliged to use the winter solstice sunset to calibrate their calendar, when La Venta was founded it appears that they could once more think in terms of the summer solstice, as had originally been done in Izapa. Indeed, the only difference was that instead of marking the sunrise as they did at Izapa, they were obliged to use the sunset at La Venta.

Once back in the mental groove of using the summer solstice to calibrate the secular calendar, it would not have been long before some priest realized that the beginning date of the sacred almanac can itself be calibrated by reference to the summer solstice. In effect, he was recognizing that, if the solstice occurred on June 22 and the "beginning of time" occurred on August 13, there was a fixed interval of time between these two dates. Using our modern calendar to demonstrate his thought process, we would count 8 days to complete the month of June, add 31 more for the month of July, and then count 13 until the sunset of August 13, yielding a total of 52 days. (For anyone used to thinking in "bundles" of 20's and 13's, what a neat package this was -- 4 rounds of 13 days = 52 days.)

Thus, no matter where one wanted to build a ceremonial center, one could always find out when it was August 13. All that was required was to count 52 days from the time that the sun turns around in the north and mark the horizon at sunset!

Source: http://www.dartmouth.edu/~izapa/CS-MM-Chap.%205.htm


Comparing the Pyramid of the Sun with the Great Pyramid in Egypt

Many scholars outside the established academic circles, have produced extensive evidence that the precise arrangement, proportion and alignment of many ancient monuments expresses, at the very least, advanced and detailed astronomical knowledge well beyond that with which their builders have been credited.

The Pyramid of the Sun and the Great Pyramid of Egypt are almost or very nearly equal to one another in base perimeter. The Pyramid of the Sun is "almost" half the height of the Great Pyramid. There is a slight difference. The Great Pyramid is 1.03 - times larger than the base of the Pyramid of the Sun. Conversely, the base of the Pyramid of the Sun is 97% of the Great Pyramid's base.

The ratio of the base perimeter to the height:

 Great Pyramid Pyramid of the Sun
 6.2800001... : 1
(deviates by 0.05 % from the 
6.2831853 value for 2 x pi)
 12.560171... :
(deviates by 0.05 % from the 
12.566371 value for 4 x pi)

The ratio of their height to the perimeter of their base are both based on the mathematical ratio 'pi'. The perimeter of the base of the Pyramid of the Sun is 4pi times its height, whereas the Great pyramid of Giza's base perimeter is 2pi times its height. The mathematical ratio 'pi' is based on knowledge of geometry, so the use of 'pi' implies knowledge of sophisticated mathematics also.

Related links:


Celestial Alignments

As with other ancient cultures, observatories, pyramids and temples were erected based on celestial alignments.

Prior to the Maya rising to power circa 400 AD in Central America and Mexico, there is evidence that the Olmec people had already begun to use astronomical orientations to direct the layout of several ceremonial centers, with the Pyramids of the New World oriented to observing and predicting the motions of the Sun and Mon. As with the Egyptians, we can deduce that Mayan astronomical endeavors, heavily relied upon the ritual and ceremonial worlds of the culture, however, here we have a wealth of evidence to substantiate such claims. Left behind are codices, or systems of hieroglyphic recordings of the Maya, and which include celestial sightings and how these sightings and predictions are woven into the entire cultural complex.

'The Dresden Codex' has perhaps proved the most fruitful in helping to recreate the ancient environment, and containing an elaborate calendar used to record the observations of Venus, which seems to be an object of utmost importance to them. Working with both a solar calendar and a ritual calendar, the ancient Maya imparted much meaning in the helical rising of Venus, which is made evident in the structure of several ceremonial centers throughout the area. Unlike the Megalithic and Egyptian complexes, scientific observation can be better deciphered here, because of the elaborate records left behind, and because of the fact that so many of the deductions the Maya made so closely resemble recent calculations of the same recorded cycles.

Like the Egyptians, the Maya had devised two calendars, one solar and one ritual which interacted and depended upon one another for the dictation of certain ritual events to be carried out. The sky for the Maya was a seeming personification of Gods and deities who played important roles in the daily lives of the population. Most significantly, the relationship between the Sun and Venus (talked about previously in the helical rising, conjunction, phases) was representative of Kutaikcan, the God of Venus , and "symbolizes the cyclic myth of departure and return or death and resurrection." (Aveni 1984). In addition other objects may have been tracked in order to predict certain 'natural' phenomenon in accordance to seasonal changes therefor placing major importance on the accurate predictions undertaken to better predict the earthly events thought to be under the control of the Gods.

A great many structures are indicative of the devotion to and dependence upon Venus, to the Maya, and can be found in the architecture ceremonial centers throughout the region. Caracol, at Chichen Itza sits atop a large earthen mound and is a structure obviously intended for observing Venus at its most extreme points on the horizon.

Just as famous, is the Governor's Palace at Uxmal, constructed so that it would center on the helical rising of Venus at its southernmost point during the eight year cycle it follows. Such an alignment can be further substantiated by the fact that the Palace deviates from the remainder of the buildings at Uxmal by twenty degrees, indicating the care taken to insure the sight lines of the observation windows. The careful planning inherent in the design and building of such structures is made evident in the precision of their alignments, however this precision was indispensable to the planning of ritual events and the prediction of natural processes that so dictated the lives of the Maya.

In Chichen Itza, in Mexico there is a celestial observatory to the stars that was aligned along the line of the summer and winter solstice. It was built by the ancient Maya and / or their God Quatzequatl. The western orientation of the Castillo at Chichen Itza faces within a degree the zenith passage sunset. The east faces sunrise at the time of solar nadir.

The Upper Temple of the Jaguars and the Temple of the Warriors align to the zenith sunset. The Castillo has 365 steps. The Caracol at Chichen Itza is recognized as an astronomical observatory (Milbrath 1988). The Caracol has three Venus alignments, including the building's alignment to the northerly extremes of Venus. A pair of turret window alignments and a pair of base alignments point to Venus' western horizon standstills around 1000 A.D. The Caracol's platform, an irregular rectangle, has a diagonal directed toward the winter solstice sunset and summer solstice sunrise (Broda 1986). The platform staircase faces the Venus extreme north position.

Note: The following information about Machu Picchu courtesy of SacredSites.com

Astronomical alignments are also obvious in Peru. One of Machu Picchu's primary functions was that of astronomical observatory. The Intihuatana stone (meaning 'Hitching Post of the Sun') has been shown to be a precise indicator of the date of the two equinoxes and other significant celestial periods. The Intihuatana (also called the Saywa or Sukhanka stone) is designed to hitch the sun at the two equinoxes, not at the solstice (as is stated in some tourist literature and new-age books). At midday on March 21st and September 21st, the sun stands almost directly above the pillar, creating no shadow at all. At this precise moment the sun "sits with all his might upon the pillar" and is for a moment "tied" to the rock. At these periods, the Incas held ceremonies at the stone in which they ?tied the sun? to halt its northward movement in the sky.

There is also an Intihuatana alignment with the December solstice (the summer solstice of the southern hemisphere), when at sunset the sun sinks behind Pumasillo (the Puma's claw), the most sacred mountain of the western Vilcabamba range, but the shrine itself is primarily equinoctial.

Shamanic legends say that when sensitive persons touch their foreheads to the stone, the Intihuatana opens one's vision to the spirit world (the author had such an experience, which is described in detail in Chapter one of Places of Peace and Power, on the web site, www.sacredsites.com). Intihuatana stones were the supremely sacred objects of the Inca people and were systematically searched for and destroyed by the Spaniards. When the Intihuatana stone was broken at an Inca shrine, the Inca believed that the deities of the place died or departed. The Spaniards never found Machu Picchu, even though they suspected its existence, thus the Intihuatana stone and its resident spirits remain in their original position.

The mountain top sanctuary fell into disuse and was abandoned some forty years after the Spanish took Cuzco in 1533. Supply lines linking the many Inca social centers were disrupted and the great empire came to an end. The photograph shows the ruins of Machu Picchu in the foreground with the sacred peak of Wayna Picchu towering behind. Partway down the northern side of Wayna Picchu is the so-called Temple of the Moon inside a cavern. As with the ruins of Machu Picchu, there is no archaeological or iconographical evidence to substantiate the new-age assumption that this cave was a goddess site.

 

The Intihuatana Stone. Machu Picchu - The Hitching Post of the Sun.  Image courtesy of  SacredSites.com


Articles, Books and Video

  • Beckmann, Petr. A History of pi. (New York: The Golem Press, 1971). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Cook, Theodore Andrea. The Curves of Life (New York: Dover Publications, Inc., 1979). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Euclid. The Thirteen Books on the Elements. Thomas L. Heath, trans. (New York: Dover Publications, Inc., 1956). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Erlande-Brandenburg, Alain. Cathedrals and Castles: Building in the Middle Ages (New York: Harry N. Abrams, 1995). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Garland, Trudi Hammel. Math and Music (Palo Alto: Dale Seymour Publications, 1995). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Hall, Manly P. The Secret Teachings of All Ages (Los Angeles: The Philosophical Research Society, 1988). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Hambidge, Jay. The Elements of Dynamic Symmetry (New York: Dover Publications, 1967). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Hancock, Graham. Fingerprints of the Gods (New York: Crown Trade Paperbacks, 1995). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Lawlor, Robert. Sacred Geometry. (London: Thames and Hudson, 1982).To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • McClain, Ernest G. The Myth of Invariance (York Beach: Nicolas-Hays, 1976). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Michell, John. New View Over Atlantis (London: Thames & Hudson, 1983). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Plato. Timaeus and Critias. Desmond Lee, trans. (London: Penguin Books, 1965). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Schneider, Michael. The Beginners Guide to Constructing the Universe (New York: Harper Collins, 1995). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Schwaller de Lubicz, Rene A. The Egyptian Miracle (Rochester: Inner Traditions International, 1988). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Schwaller de Lubicz, Rene A. Sacred Science (Rochester: Inner Traditions International, 1988). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Schwaller de Lubicz, Rene A., The Temple of Man. 2 volumes (Rochester: Inner Traditions International, Ltd., 1998. To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Thompson, D'Arcy Wentworth. On Growth and Form (New York: Dover Publications, 1992). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

  • Tompkins, Peter. Mysteries of the Mexican Pyramids (New York: Harper & Row, 1976). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here

  • Tompkins, Peter. Secrets of the Great Pyramid (New York: Harper Collins, 1971). To order this book from Amazon.com, click here.

 

National Geographic's Lost Kingdoms of the Maya
VHS
Release Date: April 14, 1997
Run Time: 60 minutes

Long before Columbus, the Maya established one of the most highly developed civilizations of their time in the jungles of Mexico and Central America. Yet this advanced society of priests, astronomers, artisans, and farmers suddenly and mysteriously collapsed more than a thousand years ago. Accompany archeologists to Copan, Dos Pilas, and other spectacular Classic Maya ruins as they unearth artifacts and huge temples of incredible beauty. Recently deciphered hieroglyphics and other new discoveries offer astounding clues to the lives of these ancient people. You'll hear the startling story of one kingdom's downfall and its final desperate hours of violent warfare. Through spine-tingling recreations, witness ancient rituals reenacted on sites where they originally occurred. And meet the enduring Maya who still maintain many of their ancestor's traditions. You'll hear the voices of a magnificent civilization as you uncover LOST KINGDOMS OF THE MAYA. 

Secrets of Mayan Science/Religion
Hunbatz Men

The Art of Mesoamerica :
From Olmec to Aztec (World of Art)

Mary Ellen Miller

Mexico and Its Ancient Ruins - PHOTO CD
Photographs from Mexico include ancient ruins of Teotihuacán, Chichen Itza and Palenque as well as images of small towns, magnificent churches, and a bullfight. This Photo CD contains 50 Royalty Free images: Win/Mac format .TIF images 9 x 6 inches
at 300 dpi.

An Introduction to the Study of the Maya Hieroglyphs
by Sylvanus Griswold Morley, Eric S. Thompson (Designer)

Fall of the Aztec and Maya Empires
VHS  Release Date: June 22, 1999
Run Time: 65 minutes

When Europe was in the Dark Ages, great cities were flourishing in Central America. This video explores how the Aztec and Mayan empires rose to startling heights and then mysteriously collapsed. When the Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés landed in 1519 in what is today Mexico, he and his soldiers were dumbfounded by the large cities they encountered. Using innovative computer graphics, this video shows what the great Aztec urban centers might have looked like when Cortés and his men first saw them.

The Mayan empire, which flourished before the Aztecs, from approximately 300 to 900 A.D., is also examined in this video, which pays particular attention to how some Mayan influence still resonates in contemporary Mexico. The Mayans and Aztecs developed complex and intelligent societies, and much of their culture is still mysterious to us, but this video does a good job of explaining the basic history of who these people were and how they lived. The video also presents the story of New Yorker John L. Stephens, who traveled to Central America in 1839 and brought back tales of great pyramids rising out of the jungle to an astonished public. The history in this video is intelligent and the technical innovations, such as the computer-generated lost cities of the Mayans and Aztecs, make for an enjoyable and interesting presentation.

 


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