Includes bibliographical references p. Summary In the ancient Mayan drama Rabinal Achi, a rebel warrior is captured by the ruler of an enemy city-state and faces his certain death at court. In the dialogue that evolves the warrior dances a dance of death, makes psychic leaps to his homeland and demands a series of requests from his captors to reconcile his death far from his homeland. The significance of the play is great to scholars and to lay persons as a partial history, by Mayans, of their culture, and as a revelation of the ancient ritual and beliefs toward the nature of sacrifice. It is one of the few surviving pieces of Native American drama from the pre-Columbian period in the form of an intact script.
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It was important for Las Casas that this method be tested without meddling from secular colonists, so he chose a territory in the heart of Guatemala where there were no previous colonies and where the natives were considered fierce and war-like. Because of the fact that the land had not been possible to conquer by military means, the governor of Guatemala, Alonso de Maldonado , agreed to sign a contract promising that if the venture was successful he would not establish any new encomiendas in the area.
These congregated a group of Christian Indians in the location of what is now the town of Rabinal. The actual town of Rabinal was also the site of a large-scale massacre during the Independence Day celebration of Doctrine of Order of Preachers[ edit ] Order of Preachers coat of arms.
After the conquest, the Spanish crown focused on the Catholic indoctrination of the natives. Human settlements founded by royal missionaries in the New World were called "Indian doctrines" or simply " doctrines ".
Originally, friars had only temporary missions: teach the Catholic faith to the natives, and then transfer the settlements to secular parishes, just like the ones that existed in Spain at the time; the friars were supposed to teach Spanish and Catholicism to the natives. And when the natives were ready, they could start living in parishes and contribute with mandatory tithing, just like the people in Spain.
Shielded by their apostolic privileges granted to convert natives into Catholicism, the missionaries only responded to their order local authorities, and never to that of the Spanish government or the secular bishops.
The orders local authorities, in turn, only dealt with their own order and not with the Spanish crown. Once a doctrine had been established, the protected their own economic interests, even against those of the King and thus, the doctrines became Indian towns that remains unaltered for the rest of the Spanish colony.
The doctrines were founded at the friars discretion, given that they were completely at liberty to settle communities provided the main purpose was to eventually transfer it as a secular parish which would be tithing of the bishop.
In reality, what happened was that the doctrines grew uncontrollably and were never transferred to any secular parish; they formed around the place where the friars had their monastery and from there, they would go out to preach to settlements that belong to the doctrine and were called "annexes", "visits" or "visit towns".
Therefore, the doctrines had three main characteristics: they were independent from external controls both ecclesiastical and civilian were run by a group of friars had a relatively larger number of annexes.
La Danza Rabinal Achí
Rabinal Achí dance drama tradition