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Chichen Itza, One of 7 Wonders in the World

Thanks to the conquest of much of the known world in the 4th century BC, Hellenistic travellers had access to the civilizations of the Egyptians, Persians, and Babylonians. These visitors, smitten by the landmarks and marvels of the various lands, began to list what they saw. The most prominent of these lists was a poem writen by a  Greek-speaking traveller named Antipater of Sidon back  in 140 BC. And thus was born the first listing of The Seven Wonders of the World.  Now of course, as man has been able to travel further and further, the scope and breadth of the original  list has changed dramatically. But what has not changed however, is that there have always only been seven entries (seven being a magical nunber in the ancient world).  Here now is the 2011 version of the seven wonders of the world:
Chichen Itza, Yucatán, Mexico
Chichen Itza is a large pre-Columbian archaeological site built by the Maya civilization located in the northern center of the Yucatán Peninsula, in the Yucatán state, present-day Mexico.
The Maya name “Chich’en Itza” means “at the mouth of the well of the Itza.” This derives from chi’, meaning “mouth” or “edge”, and ch’e'en, meaning “well.” Itzá is the name of an ethnic-lineage group that gained political and economic dominance of the northern peninsula. The name is believed to derive from the Maya itz, meaning “magic,” and (h)á, meaning “water.” Itzá in Spanish is often translated as “Brujas del Agua (Witches of Water)” but a more precise translation would be Magicians of Water.
Among the many buildings included in the site is the Temple of Kukulkan, often referred to as “El Castillo” (the castle) where on the Spring and Autumn equinox, the corner of the structure casts a shadow in the shape of a plumed serpent – Kukulcan, or Quetzalcoatl; a Great Ball Court where Mesoamerican ballgames were played; and Cenote Sagrado a sinkhole which was a place of pilgrimage for ancient Maya people who, according to historical sources, would conduct sacrifices during times of drought.
During the time of the Mayans, Chichen Itza became a major regional capital, dominating political, sociocultural, economic, and ideological life in the northern Maya lowlands.
According to Mayan chronicles, Hunac Ceel, ruler of Mayapan, conquered Chichen Itza in the 13th century. And while Chichén Itzá  finally depopulated around AD 1000, it does not appear to have been completely abandoned. According to post-Conquest sources, the site remained a place of pilgrimage and continues to this day to attract tourists from around the world.

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