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Palenque

Palenque

Palenque was a Maya city dating from about 600 AD to 800 AD. Set amidst thick trees, its decline was absorbed into the jungle, but has been excavated and restored and is now a famous archaeological site attracting hundreds of thousands of visitors per year. It is located near the Usumacinta River in the Mexican state of Chiapas, located about 130 km S of Ciudad del Carmen about 150 metres above sea-level. Palenque is a medium-sized archaelogical site, much smaller than such huge sites as Tikal or Copán, but it contains some of the finest architecture, sculpture, roof comb and bas-relief carvings the Maya produced. Much of the history of Palenque has been reconstructed from reading the hieroglyphic inscription on the many monuments, and historians now have a long sequence of the ruling dynasty of Palenque in the seventh century and extensive knowledge of the city state's rivalry with other states such as Calakmul and Toniná. The most famous ruler of Palenque is Pacal the Great whose tomb has been found and excavated in the temple of the inscriptions.