Historical Fiction

palenque-mayan-ruins--mayan-ruins-1

“From a European perspective, intrepid explorers sailed across the Atlantic to discover a new world. From Native American viewpoints, Europeans came as predators.” (Weber 26) . There were many Native Americans affected by the expedition of the Europeans. There were the Tainos, the Incas, the Aztecs and the Mayans. In the Mayan tribe there was one person was there during the conquest and did not want to give in to the Europeans.   Necahual which also means survivor, did not want to leave behind his Mayan culture. “Luis de Velasco led a group that put the outsiders to death.” (Weber 54).  Necahual knew that if he and the rest of his tribe did not give up their Mayan culture they would be killed. Necahual did not want to give up believing in their corn god, Quetzal. He wanted his people to keep putting things into the Popol Vuh book where the memory of the Mayans will live forever. The Mayans had many ways to keep their tribe alive over the years, through their hieroglyphics and the calendar that they created. Necahual would hide when those white men dressed in so much weird clothing would come around. Necahual was only a teen at the time of the conquest and he could not believe what he was seeing. His grandfather that was known for growing the best maize and squash in the tribe was killed in their very own palpas which is what a Mayan home is called. Palpas were houses that had one rectangular room with rounded corners, no windows, and one central door built to face east. Sometimes there was another door that led to a second hut, used as both a kitchen and a chicken coup.  Necahual’s grandfather and many others that were killed received their farewell by the traditional Mayan dance that allowed their dead to enter the otherworld. Necahual knew that their civilization was large and powerful and he wanted all the kings in nearby Mayan city-states to come together and fight the Europeans.  Each Mayan city-state had their own king; that had a special relationship with the god, and Necahual felt that is they all came together they could beat the Europeans. Unfortunately, Necahual plan did not get around quick enough to beat the Europeans, but Necahual like a couple others found a way to survive and not die by the diseases and enslavement brought on them by the Europeans. Necahual was able to have a family and he stills has family member a live today, they can be found in many parts of the country. These mayan people that are still alive today identify themselves as being Mayan, not American or ever Spanish. The Mayan culture deveopled many different languages throughout the years, and Necahual’s descendants and many others still speak that language today. 

“It is important to keep in mind that pre-Hispanic symbols and styles in colonial art appear almost exclusively in the earliest years of the Conquest, when old traditions were most alive, and late on mainly at peripheral regions, areas beyond the colonial sphere of interest where indigenous culture remained the strongest.” (Bailey 78) Necahual really wanted to fight for their tribe to survive and in a way they kind of did because we still have some Mayans alive today, we have the arts such as the Hieroglyphic Stairway, wall paintings and carving that make the Mayans be remembered. 

mayan-culture

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