Tula (Tollan), The Capital of Toltec Empire in Mexico

by admin on June 3, 2014

Tula (Tollan), The Capital of Toltec Empire in Mexico

 

Tula is generally accepted as the legendary capital ‘Tollan’ of the Toltec empire,, founded around 750 AD, at the same time as the Teotihuacan empire was in decline.

During the height of Tula’s power, between AD 900 and 1100, it included an area of some five square miles, with an occupation estimated as high as 60,000.

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The centre of the ruined city consists of a plaza bordered by a lavishly decorated pyramid temple. The site also contains palace complexes and courts for the ritual ball game played throughout ancient Central America. In the 11th century, Toltecs who emigrated from Tula are believed to have settled on the site of the former Mayan city of Chichén Itzá on the Yucatán peninsula, where they put up buildings in the Tula style.

The ruins at Tula share many architectural, artistic and religious influences with the Maya city of Chichén Itzá, some 700 miles away (by land) on Mexico’s Yucatán peninsula. For years, scholars believed that the warlike Toltec had invaded distant Chichén Itzá and imposed their own culture. Today, however, most archaeologists believe that Toltec Tollán was one of many cities with whom the advanced Chichén Itzá traded and the common influences flowed from Chichén Itzá to Tollán. Whichever the direction of the cultural flow, there are several distinct similarities between the two cities.

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