My first day at Uxmal was employed in making a rough survey of the land occupied by the ruins.
One of the most important of these is that known as the Pyramid of the Dwarf (or Pyramid of the Magician). I examined it with particular attention for the purpose of studying the character of a series of small stone vaults or cells placed round its base, which were similar in size and design to those that I had seen on the lower slopes of the Kue near the coast above Campeche. Many of these cells were sufficiently perfect to enable their dimensions and shape to be verified. It seemed evident that they must have been made for sepulchral purposes.
Upon an investigation of the outer parts of the pyramid, it is to be observed that it was not only carefully constructed, but its plan must have been accurately drawn and the relative mathematical measurements calculated with reference to the space that was required for the temple.
“The whole of the façades of the nunnery are elaborately sculptured, and the mechanical abilities of the builders are well brought into notice.”
The steps leading up to the summit are broad, and must have formed an imposing approach, but in consequence of the angle of the slope they are necessarily steep, and are placed so close together that there is barely sufficient width for the foot to rest. At the base of the pyramid there is an open court, which I observed to be similar in shape to one adjoining the base of an altar built by the Quichés at Utatlan, but it was larger in extent. The court leads to the entrance of the Casa de las Monjas.