A very beautiful and well-known maya site is palenque which can also be seen in the number of visitors. The city was founded about 300 ad and and it got abandoned in 799 ad. It has not yet been clarified why the great exodus had happened. The most likely explanation is probably an ecological catastrophy. It has now been shown that in the years of 500 -1000 ad more and more stronger periods of droughts had happened and the land became increasingly deserted, because the mayans had cut down the rainforest for calcinating limestone. Probably up to 4 million mayas had lived in this area. The peasants were no longer able to provide enough food for the huge cities, hunger crises forced the survivors to leave the area. The knowledge of culture, writing and astronomy disappeared with them.

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