Death and the Classic Maya Kings by James L. Fitzsimmons

By James L. Fitzsimmons

Like their regal opposite numbers in societies around the world, historic Maya rulers departed this global with complicated burial ceremonies and indulgent grave items, which frequently incorporated ceramics, pink pigments, earflares, stingray spines, jades, pearls, obsidian blades, and mosaics. Archaeological research of those burials, in addition to the decipherment of inscriptions that list Maya rulers' funerary rites, have opened a desirable window on how the traditional Maya envisaged the ruler's passage from the area of the residing to the area of the ancestors. targeting the vintage interval (AD 250-900), James Fitzsimmons examines and compares textual and archaeological facts for rites of dying and burial within the Maya lowlands, from which he creates versions of royal Maya funerary habit. Exploring old Maya attitudes towards dying expressed at famous websites akin to Tikal, Guatemala, and Copan, Honduras, in addition to less-explored archaeological destinations, Fitzsimmons reconstructs royal mortuary rites and expands our figuring out of key Maya options together with the afterlife and ancestor veneration.

Show description

Read or Download Death and the Classic Maya Kings PDF

Similar central america books

Archaeology in Latin America

This pioneering and finished survey is the 1st review of present issues in Latin American archaeology written completely via lecturers local to the sector, and it makes their accrued services to be had to an English-speaking viewers for the 1st time.
The members hide the main major concerns within the archaeology of Latin the US, similar to the domestication of camelids, the emergence of city society in Mesoamerica, the frontier of the Inca empire, and the particularly little identified archaeology of the Amazon basin.
This booklet attracts jointly key components of analysis in Latin American archaeological inspiration right into a coherent entire; no different quantity in this sector has ever handled this sort of various diversity of topics, and a few of the nations tested have by no means ahead of been the topic of a nearby examine.

Ancient Maya Commoners

A lot of what we presently learn about the traditional Maya matters the actions of the elites who governed the societies and left files in their deeds carved at the huge structures and sculptures that stay as silent testimony to their strength and standing. yet what can we recognize of the typical folks who worked to construct the temple complexes and palaces and grew the nutrition that fed all of Maya society?

On the Trail of the Maya Explorer: Tracing the Epic Journey of John Lloyd Stephens

A Mesoamerican trip booklet from views and centuries. In 1839 John Lloyd Stephens, then 31 years previous, and his touring significant other, artist Frederick Catherwood, disappeared into the mammoth rain wooded area of japanese Guatemala. they'd heard rumors that continues to be of a civilization of incomparable inventive and cultural benefit have been moldering within the steamy lowland jungles.

Lonely Planet Guatemala

Lonely Planet: The world's major shuttle advisor writer Lonely Planet Guatemala is your passport to all of the such a lot suitable and updated recommendation on what to work out, what to pass, and what hidden discoveries anticipate you. discover the road markets of Chichicastenango, climb the radiant Maya ruins of Tikal or dip your ft within the airy Lago de Atitlan; all together with your relied on commute better half.

Additional info for Death and the Classic Maya Kings

Sample text

During its time of use, the cham glyph was modified to include either a “death-eye” prefi x (no syllabic or phonetic value) in the monumental inscriptions or a visual representation of breath, with the glyph ik’, “breath, wind,” escaping from the nostrils of the skull and depicted on ceramics. indb 26 10/30/08 12:37:55 PM de ath and the af ter life in the l ow l ands cham glyph, when modified by ik’, reads t’ab’ay, “[it] ascends”; (Figure 12).  Souls, exhaled from dying bodies, rose in much the same way.

Therefore, remembering their distance in time, we can look to further parallels between ancient, colonial, and modern rites to gain insight into Classic Maya mortuary ceremonialism. k i ngsh ip a n d t h e a ncest or s In any discussion of death and the rituals surrounding it, notions of an afterlife must come into play. Despite an abundance of iconographic depictions of the Maya Underworld, few texts even come close to describing the Classic Maya conception of it. As noted earlier, analyses of ceramic or monumental depictions of the Underworld have traditionally focused on imagery from the Popol Vuh or other Colonial Period sources, despite the fact that no known glyph for Xibalba, or the Underworld, exists.

A similar attribution of human qualities to maize is an integral part of modern Maya religion. Evon Vogt notes that for the Tzotzil, maize plants, like humans, are believed to have “inner souls,” ch’uhlel, in the ear and heart of each kernel, just as they are found in the heart of each person.  morta l i t y Given the symbolism associated with maize, both as represented by the Maize God and in the humanized aspects of maize in Classic Maya iconography, we might picture the Maya as eating more than just food when they consume corn.

Download PDF sample

Rated 4.75 of 5 – based on 3 votes