Akab Dzib

Located east of the Nunnery, the Puuc-style Akab Dzib is thought by some archaeologists to be the most ancient structure excavated at Chichen Itza. The central chambers of Akab Dzib date from the 2nd century. The name means ‘Obscure Writing’ in Maya and refers to the south-side annex door, whose lintel depicts a priest with a vase etched with hieroglyphics that have yet to be successfully translated.

The building was partly resorted in 2007. It is only 20 feet (6 meters) high, and is 160 feet (50 meters) in length and 49 feet (15 meters) wide. The long western-facing facade has seven doorways while the eastern facade has only four doorways, broken by a large staircase that leads to the roof. This apparently was the front of the structure, but it looks out over what is today a steep, but dry, cenote.