[ suh-noh-tee ]
/ səˈnoʊ ti /


a deep natural well or sinkhole, especially in Central America, formed by the collapse of surface limestone that exposes ground water underneath, and sometimes used by the ancient Mayans for sacrificial offerings.

Origin of cenote

1835–45; < Mexican Spanish < Yucatec Mayan
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British Dictionary definitions for cenote


/ (sɪˈnəʊteɪ) /


(esp in the Yucatán peninsula) a natural well formed by the collapse of an overlying limestone crust: often used as a sacrificial site by the Mayas

Word Origin for cenote

C19: via Mexican Spanish from Maya conot
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012