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The Popol Vuh

An account of the Popol Vuh, written by Lewis Spence.  The full name of the work is “The Mythic and Heroic Sagas of the Kichés of Central America”.

The Popol Vuh is a the mythological and quasi-historical account of the K’iche’ people who inhabit the Guatemalan Highlands northwest of present-day Guatemala City. This version of the Popol Vuh is from the 1908 edition and is in the public domain.

Don Juan Kahuil

Shadows of the world of pre-contact Maya society come to us mostly from the records of the Spaniards themselves.  Of the records that have survived, court decisions and the narratives presented in them, offer a glimpse of a world that straddled pre and post contact, of which the judgment that follows is an example.

Entrada into Guatemala

A look at the early history of the Maya speaking people of southern Guatemala and the entradas made from that region into the north in search of Lake Peten and Tayasal.

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The Indian Tribes of Guatemala. The two chief tribes were the highly cultured Cakchiquel and Quiché. They lived in what may be described as the central portion of modern Guatemala. To the north of them dwelt the Choles, Lacandones, Mopanes, and Itzas; to the south, along the Pacific coast, were the Pipiles. With the exception of the latter, all these people spoke dialects of Maya.

Entrada of Padres Fuensalida and Orbita

An entrada, written in 1618, made by two members of the Franciscan Order. As we shall see, their coming inaugurated a new period in the conquest of the Itzas. The record suggests that  from 1524 to 1614 the Itzas of Tayasal or Peten were left alone by the Spaniards. There are numerous hints of their formidableness during this time, but ultimately the Spaniards prevailed, with the spread of Christianity playing a pivotal role in undermining native culture.

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