5 Facts About Mayans You Probably Didn’t Know Before

The Maya civilization is one of the most fascinating ancient civilizations. The Mayans were highly progressive for the age there were living in, developing complex writing systems and calendars while making advancements in art, architecture, mathematics, and astronomy. Continue reading to find out some facts about Mayans you probably didn’t know before.

Mayans Loved Chocolate

Mayans enjoyed chocolate as much as we do. There is evidence that the Maya civilization turned cocoa beans into chocolate more than 2,600 years ago. They also had a habit of turning it into hot beverages, similar to how we make hot chocolate.

Mayans Had Unusual Beauty Standards

Mayans had beauty standards that could be considered unusual today. For example, a flat forehead was considered one of the most attractive features one can have.

Mayans Often Made Human Sacrifices

Mayans often made human sacrifices in order to appease their gods. Initially, only noble and rich Mayans were offered as a sacrifice, being considered of higher worth, but the practice later focused on criminals and prisoners of war.

Mayans Enjoyed Saunas

Mayans were surprisingly affectionate towards saunas. They would make sweathouses out of stone and take part in sweating sessions as part of religious rituals and health treatments.

Mayans Pioneered Team Sports

Mayans are considered pioneers of team sports thanks to their ball game called pok-ta-pok or pitz. The game was played at a court that had a stone hoop in the middle. The goal was to get a rubber ball through the hoop using your hips. The games often had serious consequences and included human sacrifice by the losing team.  

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