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Castillo-sub to Castillo

35 years

Castillo to Chac Mool Temple

15 years

Chac Mool to Warriors

40 years

Warriors to end of sequence

90 years

Total

180 years

Although rough estimates, Modified Florescent Chichén Itzá probably was not occupied longer than three centuries nor much less than two. Because of the known stratigraphic relationships among buildings on the main plaza, one might estimate a longer period of time between the Castillo-sub and the Temple of the Warriors than was actually the case. The minimum dates may be the best estimate for the first half of the Modified Florescent sequence. The time span of architectural endeavor following the erection of the Temple of the Warriors is difficult to estimate, but one may underestimate the capabilities of peoples determined to construct architectural monuments for their society or their gods. Three centuries is a generous outer limit for the length of the Modified Florescent at Chichén Itzá, and a span of around 200 years is a more realistic suggestion based on the architectural sequence. Lacking a battery of epigraphic or radiocarbon dates for the Modified Florescent period at Chichén Itzá, there are two ways to attempt to assign absolute dates to the Modified Florescent period. One way is to “sandwich” the Modified Florescent between dates for the preceding Pure Florescent and succeeding Decadent periods, but the uncertainties of the

Pure Florescent regional chronology preclude this method as a secure way of obtaining the requisite absolute dates. A second way is to work back in time from the estimated earliest date of the Decadent period using the maximum and minimum estimates for the time length of the Modified Florescent period to suggest possible dates for the beginning of this period. The fixed date needed for this method is estimated on archaeological grounds to be not later than A.D. 1240 (Thompson 1941), and a date of around A.D. 1200 for the abandonment of Chichén Itzá has been widely accepted on both archaeological and ethnohistoric evidence (Roys 1933:204; Thompson 1937, 1941, 1945, 1950:7, 1966:139; Smith 1971:4; Ball and Andrews V 1975:Table 1). If this date of A.D. 1200 is provisionally accepted as a terminal date for the Modified Florescent at Chichén Itzá, and one subtracts the maximum and minimum estimates for the length of occupation of the site during this period, then possible absolute dates for the beginning of Modified Florescent Chichén Itzá are bracketed within maximum and minimum possibilities. A 300 year occupation of Chichén Itzá would push the initial Modified Florescent at the site to A.D.900, 10.3.11.0.0 in the GoodmanMartínez-Thompson correlation of the Maya and Christian chronologies. The minimum estimate of about two centuries places the beginning of Modified Florescent architecture at Chichén Itzá at about A.D. 1000, or about 10.8.13.0.0 in the Maya long count following the same correlation.

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Architecture and Chronology at Chichén Itzá, Yucatán  

Architecture and Chronology at Chichén Itzá, Yucatán