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ZAMNA, IZAMNA, or IZAMNAT-UL, founder of the empire of Mayapan. He seems to have been of Asiatic extraction, according to many authorities, who claim that the empires of Xibalbav and Mayapan owed their civilization to the Philistines, driven from Palestine by Joshua, who, under the conduct of Gucumatz, trusted to the sea, and were cast on the shores of Cuba. Thence they migrated to Yucatan and Guatemala, where they conquered the natives, who named them Olmecos and Xicalances. Such is the theory of Brasseur de Bour-bourg in his '" Histoire des nations civilisdes du Mexique et du Guatemala" (Paris, 1858); of Las Casas in his "Historia Apolog. de las Indias Occidentales" (manuscript); of Ramon de Ordories y Aguilar in his "Historia del cielo y de la tierra" (manuscript): of Diego Lopez Cogolludo in his "Historia de Yucatan " (Madrid, 1688), and others. ZamIla arrived in Yucatan about the time that Balum-Votan reigned in Xibalbay, heading the emigration of a great people, according to the historians. The natives of Yucatan opposed his progress. but were defeated, and, " having subdued the whole country in a few years, Zamna built Mawrpan at the foot of the Mani mottntains," according to John L. Stephens in his " Incidents of Travel in Yttcatan" (New York, 1858). He next promulgated a code of laws, divided his empire into fifteen provinces, which he made hereditary fiefs for his generals and the members of his family, cacti holding his province in fee-simple, but sustaining an army for the defence of the empire, and being compelled to own a palace in Mayapan and live there three months every year on penalty of forfeiture. Zamna's reign was a long and glorious one, and he died at a great age. It is believed that he invented the phonetic signs that constituted the Maya system of writing. He was buried in a magnificent temple built for that purpose, underground, between two rocks, which was a resort for pilgrims, and around which was erected a spacious city. This became famous under the name of Izamal, the sacred city: a part of it still exists and is inhabited, while its magnificent ruins are the admiration of the traveller. Zamna was surnamed in the aboriginal language " Itzen-caan," or "Itzen-mayal," which means" The Rose of Heaven." Bernardo Lizana has written the "Historia de Nuestra Sefiora de Izamal, de la Provincia de Yucatan" (Valladolid, 1633).
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