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The upper platform supports, and forms a prom- enade thirty feet wide round the Casa del Goberna- dor, which is a building three hundred and twenty-two feet long, thirty-nine feet wide, and twenty-six feet high,^* built of stone and mortar. There are two doorways in the rear, one on each end, and thirteen on the front; with nine interior doorways exactly opposite the same number on the exterior.
A central wall divides the interior longitudinally into two nearly equal corridors, which, divided again by transverse partition walls, form two parallel rows of rooms ex- tending the whole length of the building. The rear, or western wall, except for a short distance at each end, is nine feet thick and perfectly solid, as was proved by an excavation; the transverse walls corresponding with the two recesses are of about the same thickness; and all the other walls are between two and three feet thick. of the building at the central doorway in very nearly its true proportions, although the proper size and cubical form of the blocks are not observed.^® At about mid-height of each room the side walls begin to approach each other, one layer of stones overlap- ping the one below it, until they are only one foot apart, when a number of blocks, longer than usual, are laid across the top, serving by means of the mortar which holds them in place and the weight of the superimposed masonry, as key-stones to this arch of the true American type.
Beginning with the province of Chiquimula, border- ing on Honduras and composed for the most part of the valley of the Motagua and its tributaries, the first ruin of importance, one of the exceptions noted above to the general character of Guatemalan antiqui- ties, is found at Quirigua, fifty miles north-east of Copan, on the north side of the Motagua, about sixty miles above its mouth, and ten miles below Encuen- tros where the royal road, so called, from Yzabal to Guatemala crosses the river. -4-, /t^f^F-, 4^c^ir' 100 200 300 *oo soo «oo ^"^^ ^ 3? ^° To prove that any of them face the cardinal points will require more careful ex- amination than has yet been made. Norman, Bamhles in Yuc, frontispiece, gives a general view of the ruins by moonlight from a point and in a direction impossible to fix, which is copied in the Album Mex., tom. Most of them, however, refer only to the eastern front, and no one but Stephens notes the western irregularities.
The stream is navigable for small boats to a point opposite the ruins, which are in a cedar- forest on low moist ground nearly a mile from the bank.^ Our only knowledge respecting this 1 About five miles down the river from El Pozo de los Amates on the KUINS OF QUIRIGUA. * Liegen in der Nahe des kleinen Dorfes Los Amates, 2 Stunden unterhalb Encuentros, am linken Ufer des Mota^a, | Stunde vom Flusse entfemt, mitten im Walde. 'Eine der unbekanntesten und merkwiirdigsten Ruinenstatten Central-Amerika's, nahe dem See von Isabal, in einer schwer zuganglichen Wildniss.' Wagner and Scherzer, Costa Rica, p. 'Quirigiia, c'est le nom d'une ville con- siderable, batie par les Azteques h, I'epoqiie ou florissait la magnifique Ana- huac. ,^ ^ «»L: SCALE roads through the undergrowth for this express purpose, and the accuracy of whose survey cannot be called in question. In the southern central portion of the space com- prised in the plan is the edifice at A, known as the Casa del Gobernador, or Governor's House. In giving the dimensions of the respective terraces some also refer to their bases, and others probably to their summits. 156-7, states that the second and third terraces are each thirty feet high, while Charnay, Buines Amer., pp.
309, speaking of the Uxmal structures in general, says the blocks are usually 5 X 12 inches; Zavala, in Antiq. The dimensions of the doorways are not stated, but they are about ten feet high and seven feet wide.
105 heard of similar monuments in Yucatan and Tabasco. The State of Guatemala— A Land of Mystery— Wonderful Ke- PORTS — Discoveries Comparatively Unimportant — Ruins of Qui Ri GUA— History and Bibliography— Pyramid, Altars, and Statues — Comparison with Copan— Pyramid of Chapulco— Eelics at Chinamita— Temples of Micla— Cinaca-Mecallo— Cave of Pe^ol— Cyclopean Debris at Carrizal— Copper Med- als AT Guatemala— Esquimatha — Fortification of Mixco— Pancacoya Columns— Cave of Santa Mar Ia— Mammoth Bones AT Pe TAPA— ROSARIO AQUEDUCT— RUINS OF PATINAMIT, OR Te CPAN Guatemala — Quezaltenango, or Xelahuh — Utatlan, near Santa Cruz del Quich6— Zakul^u near Huehuetenango— Cak- CHi QUEL Ruins in the Region of Rabinal—Cawinal— Marvel- ous Ruins Reported — Stephens' Inhabited City— Antiquities OF Peten— Flores— San Jose— Casas Grandes— Tower of Yax- HAA— Ti KAL Palaces and Statues— Dolores— Antiquities of Belize.
No article of any metal whatever has been found; yet as only one burial deposit has been opened, it is by no means certain that gold or copper ornaments were not employed. This form, then, per- tained to the most exalted personages.' Foster's Pre-Hist. It is hard to resist the behef that these tablets hold locked up in their mystic characters the history of the ruined city and its people, or the hope that the key to their significance may yet be brought to light; still, in the absence of a contempo- rary written language, the hope must be allowed to rest on a very unsubstantial basis. Like those of Pa- enque, and some characters of the Dresden MS. They fought long and desperately in defence of their homes and liberty, and when forced to yield before Spanish discipline and arms, the few survivors of the struggle either retired to the inaccessible fast- nesses of the northern highlands, or remained in sullen forced submission to their conquerors in the homes of their past greatness — the aboriginal spirit still un- broken, and the native superstitious faith yielding only nominally to Catholic power and persuasion. No aboriginal name is known for the locality, Quirigua being merely that of a small village at the foot of Mount Mico, not far distant. Ill the sides to the super-.imposed structure are only eight pr nine inches high and six or seven inches in width, remaining intact only at a few points.
Palacio's miscellaneous relics are, a large stone in the form of an eagle with a tablet of hieroglyphics a vara long on its breast; a stone cross three palms high, with a broken arm; and a supposed baptismal font in the plaza. The top of the gallery leading through the river- wall would indicate a method of construction by means of over-lapping blocks, which we shall find employed ex- clusively in Yucatan and Chiapas. These artists would not select the most oly of places as the groundwork of their caricatures. When the disciples of Brasseur de Bourbourg shall succeed in realizing his expectations respecting the latter document, by means of the Landa alphabet, we may expect the mystery to be partially lifted from Copan. At the time of its conquest by the Spaniards, Guatemala was the seat of several powerful aboriginal kingdoms, chief among which were those of the Quiches and Gakchi- quels. An account made up from Catherwood's notes was, however, inserted in the Guatemalan newspaper El Tiempo hy the proprietors of the Quirigua estate, and translated into French in Ze Moniteur Parisien, from which it was reprinted iw Nouvelles Annales des Voy., 1840, tom. The site is only very slightly elevated above the level of the river, and is consequently often flooded in times of high water; indeed, during a more than ordinary freshet in 1852, after Mr Catherwood's visit, several idols were under- mined and overthrown.
The ab- sence of all traces of private dwellings we shall find universal throughout America, such structures having evidently been constructed of perishable materials; but among the more notable ruins of the Pacific States, Copan stands almost alone in its total lack of covered edifices. The characters are apparently hieroglyphics, 'but to us they are altogether unintelligible.' Gallatin, in Amer, Ethno. 107 portion lying south of the dividing line constitutes the republic of Guatemala and the English province of Belize, which latter occupies a strip along the Atlan- tic from the gulf of Amatique northward.
It is to be remarked that besides pyramids and terraced walls, no traces what- ever of buildings, public or private, remain to guide us in determining the material or style of architecture affected by the former people of this region. I have no idea'vvliat this one book spoken of may have been. Dividing this terri- tory into two nearly equal portions by a line drawn near the eighteenth parallel of latitude, the northern part, between the bay of Chetumal and Laguna de Terminos, is the peninsula of Yucatan; while that (106) GUATEMALA.
How the immense blocks of stone of which the obe- lisks were formed, were transported from the quarry, several miles distant, without the mechanical aids that would not be likely to exist prior to the use of iron, can only be conjectured. Palacio claims to have found among the peo- ple a tradition of a great lord who came from Yucatan, built the city of Copan, and after some years returned and left the newly built town desolate; a tradition which he inclines to believe, because he says the same language is understood in both regions, and he had 32 'The hieroglyphics displayed upon the walls of Copan, in horizontal or perpendicular rows, would indicate a written language in which the picto- rial significance had largely disappeared, and a kind of word- writing had become predominant. They are conjectured to recount the adventures of To- piltzin-Acxitl, a Toltec king who came from Anahuac and founded an empire in Honduras, or Tlapallan, at the end of the eleventh century. close contact with the native character in its purest state first started in the mind of the Abbe Brasseur de Bourbourg the train of thought that has since de- veloped into his most startling and complicated theo- ries respecting American antiquity ; and Guatemala has furnished also many of the documents on which these theories rest. But under this structure there is, it seems, a foundation, an artificial hill, or mound, of rough stones without mortar. The ruins are slightly mentioned in Macgregor's Progress of Amer., vol. The first is a stone of a long oval form like a human head, six feet high and thirty- five feet in circumference, the surface being covered with carved figures in demi-relief, which for some rea- son have been better preserved and present clearer out- lines than other carvings at Quirigua. 11 * No habiendo tradicion alguna que testifique los nombres propios, que en un principio tuvieron los diferentes edificios que denuncian estas ruinas, es preciso creer que los que hoy llevan, son enteramente gratuitos.' L. At a height of three feet from the ground a terrace, or promenade, mostly destroyed at the time of observation and not indicated on the plan, extends round the mound. 1^ In stating the dimensions of this mound, as I shall generally do in describing Uxmal, I have followed Stephens' text.