Freedom8 Mesoamerica



- Means "The Road of the Serpent" in Mayan. Becán was an active city for a very long period of time. Dates as early as 600 B.C. and as late as 1450 A.D. have been identified. The ruins are linked with Chicanná one mile away, and Xpuhil, four miles away, and is easily reached by car. The site covers some 63 acres, although the entire site boundaries are still undefined. This archaeological site was built from carved limestone. Becan represented an important political and military control place, and is considered the capital of the Rio Bec region. The core area of Becán is ringed by a moat and there are remains of a wall, in some places almost 11 feet high. The formation of the ditch and protective wall is very rare in the Maya civilization. This man-made ditch is slightly over one mile long and was constructed in the late pre-Classic between 100 and 250 A.D., without doubt for purely defensive purposes. The town had seven gateways which were part of the sacbé system of roads. The site's highest, most massive buildings lie inside its core area. One is almost 100 feet high. Outside the defensive wall are a large number of smaller constructions. Becán is characterized by monumental structures grouped around grand plazas. Becán reached its peak between 600 and 1000 A.D., after which the population slowly declined until about 1450 A.D., when it was deserted. Becán is currently undergoing new archaeological excavation and restoration.