Water Management and City Founding at Yaxuná, Yucatán

Author(s): Chelsea Fisher

Year: 2015


Like many other sites in the northern Maya lowlands, Yaxuná and its environs incorporate a number of cenotes (natural pits in the limestone bedrock that expose underlying groundwater) into the built environment. Interestingly, all but one of these permanent water sources lie beyond the limits of the site’s public and residential core. Residents of the ancient city compensated for this, at least on a seasonal basis, by constructing an aguada (a natural, or in this case human-modified, pond) in the site center. How did water access factor into the initial layout of settlement and construction of public/ceremonial buildings at Yaxuná? Using data from surface collection conducted in 2014, this poster will address how some of the earliest urban planning decisions incorporate water and other natural resources during the Formative period at Yaxuná. This approach will stimulate further discussion on the specific nature of Maya cities and on the variability of ancient urbanism more generally.

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Cite this Record

Water Management and City Founding at Yaxuná, Yucatán. Chelsea Fisher. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 398038)

This Resource is Part of the Following Collections


Ecology Maya Urbanism

Geographic Keywords

Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;