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The Dynastic Rulers of Palenque

Maya Civilization Study Guide

By

K'inich Ahkal Mo' Nahb

K'inich Ahkal Mo' Nahb, Temple XIX

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Palenque is a Maya civilization site located in the state of Chiapas, in Mexico. Occupied between about AD 200-800, Palenque's heyday was under Pakal the Great [ruled AD 615-683], one of the most powerful kings of central America in Late Classic times.

The rulers of Palenque were called the "Holy Lord of Toktahn" or "Holy Lord of Baakal", and among the king list are several legendary leaders, including Snake Spine and Ch'a Ruler I. Snake Spine, if he was a real person, lived when the Olmec civilization ruled, and traded extensively into much of what is today considered the Maya region. The very first named ruler of Palenque is GI, the First Father, said to have been born 3122 BC, and the Ancestral Goddess, said to have been born 3121 BC.

The dynastic rulers of Palenque begin with Bahlum-Kuk or K'uk Balahm, the Quetzal Jaguar, who took the throne of Palenque in 431 AD.

  • U-K'ix-Chan (Snake Spine or O Pop) 967 BC
  • Ch'a Ruler I (Caspar) 252 BC
  • K'uk' Bahlam (Quetzal Jaguar) AD 431-435
  • Ch'a Ruler (II) (Caspar II) 435-487
  • Butz'aj Sak Chihk (Manik) 487-501
  • Ahkal Mo' Nahb I (Lord Chaac or Chaacal I) 501-529
  • K'an Joy Chitam (K'an Xul I), 529-565
  • Ahkal Mo' Nahb II (chaacal II, Akul Ah Nab II) 565-570
  • Kan Bahlam (Chan Bahlum I, Kan-Balam I) 572-583
  • Ix Yohl Ik'nal (Lady Kan, Lady Kanal Ikal) 583-604
  • Ajen Yohl Mat (Aahc-Kan, Ac-Kan, Ah K'an) 605-612
  • Janab Pakal (Pacal I) 612-612
  • Muwaan Mat (Lady Beastie) 612-615
  • K'inich Janab Pakal (Lord Shield, Pacal, Pakal) 615-683
  • K'inich Kan Bahlam (Snake jaguar, Chan Bahlum), 684-702
  • K'inich K'an Joy Chitam (Lord Hok, K'an Xul, K'an Xul II), 702-722
  • K'inich Ahkal Mo' Nahb (Chaacal III, Ah Kul Ah Nab III), 722-?
  • Upakal K'inich Janab Pakal ?-?
  • K'inich Kan Bahlam II ?-?
  • K'inich K'uk' Bahlam (Lord K'uk', Bahlum K'uk') 764-?

Sources

See the glossary entry on Palenque for more information about this fascinating site.

This dynastic rulers entry is part of the Guide to the Maya Civilization and the Dictionary of Archaeology.

Robinson, Merle Green. 2002. Palenque (Chiapas, Mexico). pp 572-577 in Archaeology of Ancient Mexico and Central America: An Encyclopedia, Susan Toby Evans and David L. Webster, eds. Garland Publishing, Inc. New York.

Stuart, David and George Stuart. 2008. Palenque: Eternal City of the Maya. Thames and Hudson.

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