Project Results
Settlement history in the region based on distribution of ceramics (cont.)

 It is interesting to note that most of the settlement during these early periods is located outside of the
area that was eventually enclosed by the city wall and the land that eventually became the site center
remained totally devoid of settlement during this time.  Also of note during these periods was a lack of
settlement in the southeastern portions of the study area.  This area is known to have close access to
several water sources and, in later periods, became one of the most heavily settled portions of Mayapán
 Beginning in the Terminal Classic period (Figure 6.41), we see evidence of a population expansion,
again primarily taking place around what was destined to become peripheral Mayapán.  Terminal classic
sherds were recorded in all four directions surveyed outside of the city wall.  The entire northeast portion
of the study area, surrounding cenote Itzmal Ch’en and Cenotes Actun Burro, saw marked population
growth during this period.  Similar growth occurred in the south and northeastern settlement pockets.  
With the exception of the northeast portion of the site around Cenote Itzmal Ch’en, which saw expanded
settlement during the period, most of the remaining walled portions of the site remained largely devoid of
Terminal Classic pottery.  It is during the Terminal Classic, that we find the first occupation of the
southeast of the study area which was densely settled shortly thereafter.  A light density of sherds was
detected in the portion of the site set to become the site center.  In this period we see the emergence of a
new settlement pocket in the north, detected in the northern portion of Transect 6.  It appears that this
settlement is related to the late Classic/Terminal classic site of Telchaquillo, located in the northeast
portion of my study area and centered on yet another significant water-bearing cenote that today serves
as the modern town’s swimming area.  The overall impression is that, during the Terminal Classic,
established settlement pockets grew at a moderate rate and the local population began to exploit some
new areas, perhaps locations with somewhat less easily accessible water sources.

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Dissertation and all web site contents copyright 2008 Bradley W. Russell