Early Cultures of Latin America

Mayan Government

Halach Uinik

The supreme ruler of the province was, the Halach Uinik (or Halach Wíinik) who lived in absolute power over earthly and spiritual matters. The mandate of Halach Uinik was hereditary within one family, and passed from father to eldest son.


The Halach Uinik was, at the same time, the Batab or local chief of the city in which he lived, and he commanded the rest of the bataboob or local chiefs of the populations that made up the province. As supreme commander, he received tribute, summoned the warriors and was formulating the policy.

Hierarchical division

In Mayan society, power was divided hierarchically between Yum, who is the head of the city. Being a judge is absolute batah work, the governor of the province, but the real leaders of the Mayan civilization are Halach Uinic, Kan Alma supreme leader and high priest.