Mérida was founded in 1542 by Montejo y León ("el Mozo") and named after the town of Mérida in Extremadura, Spain. It was built on the site of the Maya city of T'hó
Jaen Cathedral. It was built upon the ruins of a Mosque.
Merida's cathedral was probably built upon the Mayan ruins of T'ho... the Spanish using these conquered people as slaves during construction. It must have been terrible for the inhabitants to see their capital destroyed and this structure built on top.... just as in Mexico City.
The Cathedral was commissioned by Pope Pius IV. The architect was Juan Miguel de Aguero. He also built the fortifications of Havana Cuba and the Cathedral of Mexico City.
I found this a bit unsettling considering the building's history.