Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Tinganio Archaeological Zone

Tinganio - why didn't someone mention this place sooner

The town of Santiago Tingambato is located on the road that goes from Patzcuaro to Uruapan, 37 kilometers from Lake Patzcuaro. In the south side of the village an archaeological zone is found; it is named Tinganio; those who speak the purepecha language say the name comes from "tinanio", which means "place of the lukewarm", referring not only to the climate, but also to the social environment, to the feelings of the villagers.

This site apparently had two periods of occupation, the first one between A.D. 450 and 600, and the second one between A.D. 600 and 900. During this latter stage, an architectural style was introduced which has been described as similar to the one at Teotihuacán. The site's location apparently was chosen not only because it is in a privileged area with ample access to water and good soils (the site is at present surrounded by avocado orchards and the area has some of the most fertile land in all of Michoacán), but also because it is a strategic location between two ecological niches: the cooler highlands and the warmer lowlands. Tingambato may have served in Prehispanic times as a link between these two areas, as it did during colonial times.


ball court


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Patzcuaro is the ex-capital of Michoacan and before that was Tzintzuntzan, a small town nearby dating to the Purhépecha empire in the 1300's. The museum in Patzcuaro is finding ruins in it's back yard that predates history and they are believed to be earlier than the history of Tzintzuntzan. The Purhépecha were one of the indigenous tribes that were not conquered by the Aztecs

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