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Geographic and Environmental Influence on Maya Settlement Patterns of the Northwest Yucatan: An Explanation for the Sparsely Settled Western Cenote Zone

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Date Issued:
2012
Abstract/Description:
Most settlement pattern research and GIS analysis of the ancient Maya of the Northern Yucatan have focused on water availability in a dry landscape where cenotes are often the only water source. While water is of paramount importance, permanent settlement secondarily requires farmable soil, a resource often as precious as water in many parts of the Yucatan. The dynamics between these resources reveal areas of ideal settlement and more challenging landscapes for which the Maya developed strategies to overcome environmental conditions. A region of the southwest "Cenote Zone", however, appears to have presented the ancient Maya with insurmountably poor environmental conditions despite abundant water resources. The lack of dense population and stone architecture in this area emphasizes the lack of a simple correlation between cenotes and settlement. This thesis uses GIS analysis to identify and explore such problematic settlement areas to better understand the factors and complexities involved in the more successful settlements of neighboring regions.
Title: Geographic and Environmental Influence on Maya Settlement Patterns of the Northwest Yucatan: An Explanation for the Sparsely Settled Western Cenote Zone.
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Name(s): Rohrer, Patrick, Author
Chase, Arlen, Committee Chair
Chase, Diane, Committee Member
Walker, John, Committee Member
, Committee Member
University of Central Florida, Degree Grantor
Type of Resource: text
Date Issued: 2012
Publisher: University of Central Florida
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: Most settlement pattern research and GIS analysis of the ancient Maya of the Northern Yucatan have focused on water availability in a dry landscape where cenotes are often the only water source. While water is of paramount importance, permanent settlement secondarily requires farmable soil, a resource often as precious as water in many parts of the Yucatan. The dynamics between these resources reveal areas of ideal settlement and more challenging landscapes for which the Maya developed strategies to overcome environmental conditions. A region of the southwest "Cenote Zone", however, appears to have presented the ancient Maya with insurmountably poor environmental conditions despite abundant water resources. The lack of dense population and stone architecture in this area emphasizes the lack of a simple correlation between cenotes and settlement. This thesis uses GIS analysis to identify and explore such problematic settlement areas to better understand the factors and complexities involved in the more successful settlements of neighboring regions.
Identifier: CFE0004589 (IID), ucf:49205 (fedora)
Note(s): 2012-12-01
M.A.
Sciences, Anthropology
Masters
This record was generated from author submitted information.
Subject(s): cenote -- chultun -- rejollada -- soil -- Maya -- Yucatan -- GIS
Persistent Link to This Record: http://purl.flvc.org/ucf/fd/CFE0004589
Restrictions on Access: public 2012-12-15
Host Institution: UCF

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