By Gerardo Aldana y Villalobos, Edwin L. Barnhart
Archaeoastronomy and the Maya illustrates archaeoastronomical ways to historical Mayan cultural construction. The booklet is contextualized via a historical past of archaeoastronomical investigations into Mayan websites, originating within the nineteenth century discovery of astronomical tables inside of hieroglyphic books. Early twentieth century archaeological excavations published inscriptions carved into stone that still preserved astronomical documents, in addition to structure that was once outfitted to mirror astronomical orientations. those fabrics supplied the foundation of a turning out to be professionalized archaeoastronomy, blossoming within the Seventies and increasing into contemporary years. The chapters the following exemplify the advances made within the box through the early twenty first century in addition to the on-going range of ways, featuring new views and discoveries in old Mayan astronomy that outcome from contemporary reports of architectural alignments, codices, epigraphy, iconography, ethnography, and calendrics. greater than simply investigations of esoteric old sciences, reviews of historic Mayan astronomy have profoundly aided our figuring out of Mayan worldviews. ideas of time and area, meanings encoded in non secular artwork, intentions underlying architectural alignments, or even tools of political legitimization are all illuminated during the research of Mayan astronomy
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Additional resources for Archaeoastronomy and the Maya
26 The 360-day cycle, and an astronomical explanation for the five “uncounted” days The Chocolá horizon diagram (Fig. 11) also highlights the asymmetry of the sun’s path north of zenith passage, as contrasted to the symmetrical path south of nadir passage. The sun’s course south of nadir passage to winter solstice and back takes 5 winal (100 days) while that north of zenith passage to summer solstice and back requires 5 winal and 5 days (105 days). What disturbs the symmetry are the five “extra” days of the sun’s journey north of zenith passage – the days regarded throughout Mesoamerica as “uncounted,” “nameless,” and “leftover” (Thompson 1950: 106, 117–118; León-Portilla 1988: 47, 145).
0. 40 San Lorenzo reached its peak development in the Gulf Coast region, where the “fully developed Olmec culture” was represented by “gigantic basalt sculptures fashioned in a distinctive style,” from approximately 1200–900 BC (Coe 2005: 50–52). The mythology of the Hero Twins, the Maize God and the Creation appears to have been well formed by the first or second centuries BC at both Izapa and San Bartolo (Coe 1989; Laughton 1997; Saturno et al. 2005: 6–7). 41 Perhaps this confirmation occurred as late as 100 BC, when the second “renewal” of the sun’s first journey of the current era along the Chocolá horizon took place (see Note 39).
And Horst Hartung, 1981. The Observation of the Sun at the Times of Passage Through the Zenith in Mesoamerica. Archaeo astronomy (Supplement to the Journal for the History of Astronomy 12(3)), S51–S70. Aveni, Anthony F. and Horst Hartung, 1986. Maya City Planning and the Calendar. Transactions of the American Philosophical Society 76(7), 1–87. Aveni, Anthony F. and Horst Hartung, 1989. Waxactun, Guatemala, Group E and Similar Assemblages: an Archaeoastronomical Reconsideration. World Archaeoastronomy (A.
Archaeoastronomy and the Maya by Gerardo Aldana y Villalobos, Edwin L. Barnhart