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Zane Paxton | all galleries >> Yucatan Quest >> Kabah > Codz Pop
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Codz Pop
12-OCT-2005 Zane Paxton

Codz Pop

Kabah. Yucatan. Mexico

Measuring 45 meters long with 260 Chaac masks, it has been theorized that there was one mask built for every day in the Mayan calendar. The only structure that comes close to this repetitious use of the Chaac image is on the Palace of the Governor in Uxmal. The spectacular Codz Pop which means "Rolled Mat" has 230 remaining Chaac masks that are more closely stacked than at Uxmal.

This structure is a true feat of architecture.

What this tells us about the Maya, is that in a world just emerging from the Neolithic period of history without iron tools, sophisticated measuring devices or wheels, the Maya had developed a mass production system to build such structures. Likely different groups or workers would be required to perform different specialized functions. Some would cut the course stone in a quarry, others would transport the stone to those who roughed them into shape. Finally, the most skilled craftsman would perform the beautiful carving to the exact dimensions needed to fit into the final structure.

In the total there are 19 different blocks of stone including the nose that makes up each Chaac mask. There are 4,940 stone blocks here for just the Chaac masks. Add to this the smaller blocks that made up the door jambs and other ornaments on the wall, and we can estimate that the building would have over 6,000 blocks. There would have been different teams of carvers, each working on a different section of the wall, all needing to be coordinated to fit together at the same time. All blocks were carved from stone by hand, and all had to be within a certain tight tolerance. If each block was out by even a centimeter, then by the time builders reached the far end of the wall, that cumulative error would have been so significant that the patterns would not match at all.

Nikon D2x ,Nikkor 17-35mm f/2.8D ED-IF AF-S
1/100s f/5.6 at 17.0mm iso100 full exif

other sizes: small medium original
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