- Mani (Yucatán)
About 100,000 Maya texts were ordered by Bishop Diego de Landa to be burned. They contained hundreds or thousands of years of written records. The information included genealogies, biographies, collections of songs, science books, history, prophecy, astrology, and ritual. Some scholars refute the extent of the destruction by the Spaniards, noting that these people did not have control of the total of Maya lands and that the writing material being paper allowed natural forces to destroy it.
In 1528, the first archbishop of Mexico, Don Juan de Zumárraga, ordered every book, codex, and hieroglyph – numbering about 700,000 – to be burned.
Libraries, including some with vast information on medicinal plants, and books found elsewhere were ordered by the Spanish to be burned.
- Surviving Ancient Books
- Dresden Codex
It pertains mainly to the Maya cycles of time. It also includes descriptions of solar eclipses, stories of Quetzalcoatl, and Maya ceremonies.
- Grolier Codex
It contains information on scientific and religious matters.
- Madrid Codex
It contains a 70-page document and a 42-page document on scientific and religious matters.
- Mendoza Codex
It is one of the oldest of ancient Mexico, covering the history of the Mixtec people from 692 CE. It is written on deerskin in book form and unfolds like an accordion. The writing contains pictographic, ideographic and rebus forms.
- Paris Codex
It is an 11-page document containing an account of Maya history.
- Popul Vuh
It is the prime source for the Maya cosmology, setting out the concept of the cycle of the Suns. This is not original book, but one written from memory.
- Tro-Coretesianus Codex
It is a Maya codex in two parts and is an astrological work that was used by priests.
- Dresden Codex
(This page was updated in December 2012.)