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Tula de Allende
—  Municipality and town  —

Coat of arms
Tula de Allende is located in Mexico
Tula de Allende
Location in Mexico
Coordinates: 20°03′N 99°21′W / 20.05°N 99.35°W / 20.05; -99.35
Country  Mexico
State Hidalgo
Municipal seat Tula de Allende
 - Municipality and town 305.8 km2 (118.1 sq mi)
Population (2005)
 - Municipality and town 93,296
 - Metro 28,432
Columns in the form of Toltec warriors in Tula
Toltec pictographs

Tula, formally, Tula de Allende is a town and one of the 84 municipalities of Hidalgo, in central-eastern Mexico. The municipality covers an area of 305.8 km² (118.07 sq mi), and as of 2005, the municipality had a total population of 93,296, with 28,432 in the town.[1] The municipality includes numerous smaller outlying towns, the largest of which are El Llano, San Marcos, and San Miguel Vindho.

It is located some 100 km to the north-northwest of Mexico City. It covers part of the southeastern portion of the Pre-Columbian city.

Nearby are the remains of the ancient capital city of the Toltecs, also known as "Tula" or as "Tollan". Usually identified as the Toltec capital around 980 CE, the city was destroyed at some time between 1168 or 1179.

The site is at and around the junction of two rivers, the Río Rosas and the Río Tula. The two largest clusters of grand ceremonial architecture are nicknamed "Tula Grande" (the most visited by tourists) and "Tula Chico". Remains of other buildings extend for some distance in all directions. In the residential areas streets were laid out in a grid pattern.

The city was the largest in central Mexico in the 9th and 10th centuries, covering an area of some 12 km² with a population of at least some 30,000, possibly significantly more. While it might have been the largest city in Mesoamerica at the time, some Maya sites in the Yucatán may have rivaled its population during this period.

Distinctive Toltec features here include terraced pyramids, colonnaded buildings, and relief sculptures, including the characteristic chacmools, reclining figures that may have been avatars of the rain god, Tlaloc. There are two large courts for playing the Mesoamerican ballgame. Some of the architecture is similar to that at Chichen Itza.

Pyramid at Tula archaeological site

The site was extensively looted in Aztec times, with much of the artwork and sculpture carted off.

The first scholarly description of the ruins was made by Antonio García Cubas of the Mexican Society of Geography and History in 1873. The first archaeological excavations were conducted in the 1880s by French antiquarian Désiré Charnay. A twenty year archaeological project under Jorge Acosta of Mexico's National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) began in 1940. In the 1970s further excavations and restorations of some structures were conducted by INAH and the University of Missouri.

Parts of the site are open for tourist visits, and Tula has a small museum.

See also


  1. ^ "Tula de Allende". Enciclopedia de los Municipios de México. Instituto Nacional para el Federalismo y el Desarrollo Municipal. Retrieved December 27, 2008.  

External links

Coordinates: 20°03′N 99°21′W / 20.05°N 99.35°W / 20.05; -99.35



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