THE MADRID CODEX NEW APPROACHES TO UNDERSTANDING AN ANCIENT MAYA MANUSCRIPT MESOAMERICAN WORLDS

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The Madrid Codex

Author : Gabrielle Vail
ISBN : PSU:000065191200
Genre : History
File Size : 82.56 MB
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This volume offers new calendrical models and methodologies for reading, dating, and interpreting the general significance of the Madrid Codex. The longest of the surviving Maya codices, the Madrid Codex includes texts and images painted by scribes conversant in Maya hieroglyphic writing, a written means of communication practiced by Maya elites from the second to the fifteenth centuries A.D. Some scholars have recently argued that the Madrid Codex originated in the Petén region of Guatemala and post-dates European contact. The contributors to this volume challenge that view by demonstrating convincingly that it originated in northern Yucatán and was painted in the Pre-Columbian era. In addition, several contributors reveal provocative connections among the Madrid and Borgia group of codices from Central Mexico.
Category: History

Astronomers Scribes And Priests

Author : Gabrielle Vail
ISBN : 088402346X
Genre : History
File Size : 47.85 MB
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Astronomers, Scribes, and Priests examines evidence for cultural interchange among the intellectual powerbrokers in Postclassic Mesoamerica, specifically those centered in the northern Maya lowlands and the central Mexican highlands. Contributors to the volume’s thirteen chapters bring an interdisciplinary perspective to understanding the interactions that led to shared content in hieroglyphic codices and mural art. The authors address similarities in artifacts, architectural styles, and building alignments—often produced in regions separated by hundreds of miles—based on their analyses of iconographic, archaeological, linguistic, and epigraphic material. The volume includes a wealth of new data and interpretive frameworks in this comprehensive discussion of a critical time period in the Mesoamerican past.
Category: History

Re Creating Primordial Time

Author : Gabrielle Vail
ISBN : 9781607322214
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 38.80 MB
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Re-Creating Primordial Time offers a new perspective on the Maya codices, documenting the extensive use of creation mythology and foundational rituals in the hieroglyphic texts and iconography of these important manuscripts. Focusing on both pre-Columbian codices and early colonial creation accounts, Vail and Hernández show that in spite of significant cultural change during the Postclassic and Colonial periods, the mythological traditions reveal significant continuity, beginning as far back as the Classic period. Remarkable similarities exist within the Maya tradition, even as new mythologies were introduced through contact with the Gulf Coast region and highland central Mexico. Vail and Hernández analyze the extant Maya codices within the context of later literary sources such as the Books of Chilam Balam, the Popol Vuh, and the Códice Chimalpopoca to present numerous examples highlighting the relationship among creation mythology, rituals, and lore. Compiling and comparing Maya creation mythology with that of the Borgia codices from highland central Mexico, Re-Creating Primordial Time is a significant contribution to the field of Mesoamerican studies and will be of interest to scholars of archaeology, linguistics, epigraphy, and comparative religions alike.
Category: Social Science

Archaeoastronomy And The Maya

Author : Gerardo Aldana y V.
ISBN : 9781782976462
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 32.16 MB
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Archaeoastronomy and the Maya illustrates archaeoastronomical approaches to ancient Mayan cultural production. The book is contextualized through a history of archaeoastronomical investigations into Mayan sites, originating in the 19th century discovery of astronomical tables within hieroglyphic books. Early 20th century archaeological excavations revealed inscriptions carved into stone that also preserved astronomical records, along with architecture that was built to reflect astronomical orientations. These materials provided the basis of a growing professionalized archaeoastronomy, blossoming in the 1970s and expanding into recent years. The chapters here exemplify the advances made in the field during the early 21st century as well as the on-going diversity of approaches, presenting new perspectives and discoveries in ancient Mayan astronomy that result from recent studies of architectural alignments, codices, epigraphy, iconography, ethnography, and calendrics. More than just investigations of esoteric ancient sciences, studies of ancient Mayan astronomy have profoundly aided our understanding of Mayan worldviews. Concepts of time and space, meanings encoded in religious art, intentions underlying architectural alignments, and even methods of political legitimization are all illuminated through the study of Mayan astronomy.
Category: Social Science

New Perspectives On Human Sacrifice And Ritual Body Treatments In Ancient Maya Society

Author : Vera Tiesler
ISBN : 0387488715
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 55.27 MB
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This book examines Maya sacrifice and related posthumous body manipulation. The editors bring together an international group of contributors from the area studied: archaeologists as well as anthropologists, forensic anthropologists, art historians and bioarchaeologists. This interdisciplinary approach provides a comprehensive perspective on these sites as well as the material culture and biological evidence found there
Category: Social Science

Lord Eight Wind Of Suchixtlan And The Heroes Of Ancient Oaxaca

Author : Robert Lloyd Williams
ISBN : 9780292774032
Genre : History
File Size : 67.33 MB
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In the pre-Hispanic Mesoamerican world, histories and collections of ritual knowledge were often presented in the form of painted and folded books now known as codices, and the knowledge itself was encoded into pictographs. Eight codices have survived from the Mixtec peoples of ancient Oaxaca, Mexico; a part of one of them, the Codex Zouche-Nuttall, is the subject of this book. As a group, the Mixtec codices contain the longest detailed histories and royal genealogies known for any indigenous people in the western hemisphere. The Codex Zouche-Nuttall offers a unique window into how the Mixtecs themselves viewed their social and political cosmos without the bias of western European interpretation. At the same time, however, the complex calendrical information recorded in the Zouche-Nuttall has made it resistant to historical, chronological analysis, thereby rendering its narrative obscure. In this pathfinding work, Robert Lloyd Williams presents a methodology for reading the Codex Zouche-Nuttall that unlocks its essentially linear historical chronology. Recognizing that the codex is a combination of history in the European sense and the timelessness of myth in the Native American sense, he brings to vivid life the history of Lord Eight Wind of Suchixtlan (AD 935–1027), a ruler with the attributes of both man and deity, as well as other heroic Oaxacan figures. Williams also provides context for the history of Lord Eight Wind through essays dealing with Mixtec ceremonial rites and social structure, drawn from information in five surviving Mixtec codices.
Category: History

Parallel Worlds

Author : Kerry M. Hull
ISBN : 9781457117534
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 55.63 MB
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Despite recent developments in epigraphy, ethnopoetics, and the literary investigation of colonial and modern materials, few studies have compared glyphic texts and historic Maya literatures. Parallel Worlds examines Maya writing and literary traditions from the Classic period until today, revealing remarkable continuities across time. In this volume, contributions from leading scholars in Maya literary studies examine Maya discourse from Classic period hieroglyphic inscriptions to contemporary spoken narratives, focusing on parallelism to unite the literature historically. Contributors take an ethnopoetic approach, examining literary and verbal arts from a historical perspective, acknowledging that poetic form is as important as narrative content in deciphering what these writings reveal about ancient and contemporary worldviews. Encompassing a variety of literary motifs, including humor, folklore, incantation, mythology, and more specific forms of parallelism such as couplets, chiasms, kennings, and hyperbatons, Parallel Worlds is a rich journey through Maya culture and pre-Columbian literature that will be of interest to students and scholars of anthropology, ethnography, Latin American history, epigraphy, comparative literature, language studies, indigenous studies, and mythology.
Category: Social Science

Constructing Power And Place In Mesoamerica

Author : Merideth Paxton
ISBN : 9780826359070
Genre : Art
File Size : 78.5 MB
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Identities of power and place, as expressed in paintings from the periods before and after the Spanish conquest of Mesoamerica, are the subject of this book of case studies from Central Mexico, Oaxaca, and the Maya area. These sophisticated, skillfully rendered images occur with architecture, in manuscripts, on large pieces of cloth, and on ceramics.
Category: Art

The Maya Calendar

Author : Weldon Lamb
ISBN : 9780806157788
Genre : Language Arts & Disciplines
File Size : 23.36 MB
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By 1,800 years ago, speakers of proto-Ch’olan, the ancestor of three present-day Maya languages, had developed a calendar of eighteen twenty-day months plus a set of five days for a total of 365 days. This original Maya calendar, used extensively during the Classic period (200–900 CE), recorded in hieroglyphic inscriptions the dates of dynastic and cosmological importance. Over time, and especially after the Mayas’ contact with Europeans, the month names that had originated with these inscriptions developed into fourteen distinct traditions, each connected to a different ethnic group. Today, the glyphs encompass 250 standard forms, variants, and alternates, with about 570 meanings among all the cognates, synonyms, and homonyms. In The Maya Calendar, Weldon Lamb collects, defines, and correlates the month names in every recorded Maya calendrical tradition from the first hieroglyphic inscriptions to the present—an undertaking critical to unlocking and understanding the iconography and cosmology of the ancient Maya world. Mining data from astronomy, ethnography, linguistics, and epigraphy, and working from early and modern dictionaries of the Maya languages, Lamb pieces together accurate definitions of the month names in order to compare them across time and tradition. His exhaustive process reveals unsuspected parallels. Three-fourths of the month names, he shows, still derive from those of the original hieroglyphic inscriptions. Lamb also traces the relationship between month names as cognates, synonyms, or homonyms, and then reconstructs each name’s history of development, connecting the Maya month names in several calendars to ancient texts and archaeological finds. In this landmark study, Lamb’s investigations afford new insight into the agricultural, astronomical, ritual, and even political motivations behind names and dates in the Maya calendar. A history of descent and diffusion, of unexpected connectedness and longevity, The Maya Calendar offers readers a deep understanding of a foundational aspect of Maya culture.
Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

The Oxford Handbook Of Mesoamerican Archaeology

Author : Deborah L. Nichols
ISBN : 9780199875009
Genre : Social Science
File Size : 84.24 MB
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The Oxford Handbook of Mesoamerican Archaeology provides a current and comprehensive guide to the recent and on-going archaeology of Mesoamerica. Though the emphasis is on prehispanic societies, this Handbook also includes coverage of important new work by archaeologists on the Colonial and Republican periods. Unique among recent works, the text brings together in a single volume article-length regional syntheses and topical overviews written by active scholars in the field of Mesoamerican archaeology. The first section of the Handbook provides an overview of recent history and trends of Mesoamerica and articles on national archaeology programs and practice in Central America and Mexico written by archaeologists from these countries. These are followed by regional syntheses organized by time period, beginning with early hunter-gatherer societies and the first farmers of Mesoamerica and concluding with a discussion of the Spanish Conquest and frontiers and peripheries of Mesoamerica. Topical and comparative articles comprise the remainder of Handbook. They cover important dimensions of prehispanic societies--from ecology, economy, and environment to social and political relations--and discuss significant methodological contributions, such as geo-chemical source studies, as well as new theories and diverse theoretical perspectives. The Handbook concludes with a section on the archaeology of the Spanish conquest and the Colonial and Republican periods to connect the prehispanic, proto-historic, and historic periods. This volume will be a must-read for students and professional archaeologists, as well as other scholars including historians, art historians, geographers, and ethnographers with an interest in Mesoamerica.
Category: Social Science