Unearthing the Mayan Creation Myth
By Sam Kissinger | DiscoverMagazine.com
Archaeologists who have uncovered two massive carved stucco panels in the Mirador Basin of Gua temala’s northern rain forest say they are the earliest known representation of the Mayan creation myth, predating other such artifacts by a millennium. According to researchers, the panels—26 feet long and 20 feet high, with images of monsters, gods, and swimming heroes—date to 300 B.C.
They formed the sides of a channel that carried rainwater into a complex system of stepped pools, where it was stored for drinking and agriculture.
Idaho State University archaeologist Richard Hansen, who is directing the ongoing excavation, says that the panels’ carved images depict an important scene from the Popol Vuh, a text of the Mayan myth that was first recorded in the 16th century. In the part of the story shown, the Hero Twins swim through the underworld after retrieving the head of their father, the deity Hun Hunahpu.
Some historians dismiss the Popol Vuh as a contaminated document, containing not only ancient Mayan mythology but also contemporary Spanish Catholic influences. The discovery of the panels establishes key portions of the stories as genuinely Mayan.
“We can now extend the authenticity of the creation myth back another 1,000 years,” Hansen says.
Idaho State University anthropologist Richard Hansen shows a 2,300-year-old
stucco frieze found at the El Mirador archaeological site in northern Guatemala. (Moises Castillo / AP)
Article from: Unearthing the Mayan Creation Myth
MAYA MYTH REVEALED
Rare Maya panels found in Guatemala
Scholar finds Mayans' buried highway through hell
Richard D. Hansen, Ph.D.
Latest News from our Front Page
Pressure from the United Patriots Front Stops Mosque Plan
Pressure from the United Patriots Front appears to have killed off a mosque development in Narre Warren North.
The City of Casey council now looks likely to withhold planning approval for the development in a special meeting set for Tuesday night.
A council report, to be considered by councillors on Tuesday, recommends that the approval be blocked.
The mosque opponents’ cause has been helped by councillor ...
Police face questions over the influence of the Freemasons
South Yorkshire Police today face questions over whether powerful 'secret society' the Freemasons held sway over the force at the time of Hillsborough.
Families of victims say that officers who were Masons were promoted into powerful positions despite being ill-equipped, including match commander David Duckenfield.
Duckenfield told the fresh inquests he had been a Freemason since 1975 and became head of his ...
England Bans its Own Flag to Avoid Offending Muslims
St. George's Cross "racist" towards immigrants
Government officials said their city was ‘too multicultural’ to celebrate St George’s Day, England’s version of the 4th of July.
The council said that displaying the English flag may have been seen as “racist” towards immigrants.
Half of Western European men descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’
Half of Western European men are descended from one Bronze Age ‘king’ who sired a dynasty of elite nobles which spread throughout Europe, a new study has shown.
The monarch, who lived around 4,000 years ago, is likely to have been one of the earliest chieftains to take power in the continent.
He was part of a new order which emerged in ...
"Local Residents" Are Filmed Stealing Dozens of Bottles of Water at London Marathon Stop
Editor's Comment: "Local" residents? Why bother blurring their faces? We know who they are.
London marathon runners were robbed of dozens of bottled waters when thieves raided a refreshment area armed with trolleys during today's race.
Nearby residents - including parents with children - were captured on camera piling up crates of free water handed out by volunteers during the 26-mile event.
|More News » |