Classic Maya Political History: Hieroglyphic and Archaeological Evidence

Classic Maya Political History: Hieroglyphic and Archaeological Evidence

Paperback School of American Research Advanced Seminar Series

Edited by T.Patrick Culbert, Series edited by Jonathan Haas

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  • Publisher: CAMBRIDGE UNIVERSITY PRESS
  • Format: Paperback | 416 pages
  • Dimensions: 153mm x 230mm x 26mm | 663g
  • Publication date: 19 December 1996
  • Publication City/Country: Cambridge
  • ISBN 10: 052156445X
  • ISBN 13: 9780521564458
  • Edition statement: Cambridge Univ.
  • Illustrations note: 7 tables

Product description

Ancient Maya civilization once flourished in the rainforests of what is today southern Mexico and Central America. It possessed the only full system of writing ever to be developed in the Americas. The pace of decipherment of Maya hieroglyphic writing has accelerated, and within the last decade half of the inscriptions from the sites of the Classic Period (AD 250-900) have been translated. Much of the newly available information consists of historical records of the careers of Maya rulers of the time. This volume is the first to present in detail the results of decipherment and to consider the implications of a Classic Maya written history. Contributors examine the way in which the Maya elite created the kinship, alliance, warfare and ceremonial networks on which the civilisation was founded. Drawing upon important material recently made available, they have transformed our understanding of the Maya.

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Review quote

'From Classic Maya Political History we gain a deeper and more complete picture of one of the non-Western world's most sophisticated civilisations.' New Scientist 'In summary, this important book makes the exciting recent developments in Maya epigraphy accessible to a wider anthropological audience ... [it] synthesizes the current state of the art and points the way for future research in a field that is changing the way we view Classic Maya civilization.' Man

Back cover copy

Ancient Maya civilization once flourished in the rainforests of what is today southern Mexico and Central America. It possessed the only full system of writing ever to be developed in the Americas. The pace of decipherment of Maya hieroglyphic writing has accelerated in the past few years, and half of the inscriptions from the sites of the Classic Period (AD 250-900) have now been read. Much of the newly available information consists of historical records of the careers of Maya rulers of the time.This volume is the first to present in detail the results of decipherment and to consider the implications of a Classic Maya written history. Contributors examine the way in which the Maya elite created the kinship, alliance, warfare and ceremonial networks on which the civilization was founded. Drawing upon important material just recently made available, they have transformed our understanding of the Maya.

Table of contents

Preface; List of figures; List of tables; 1. Introduction Norman Hammond; 2. Classic Maya emblem glyphs Peter Mathews; 3. Prehistoric polities of the Pasion region: hieroglyphic texts and their archaeological settings Peter Mathews, and Gordon R. Willey; 4. An epigraphic history of the western Maya region Linda Schele; 5. Cyles of growth at Tikal Christopher Jones; 6. Polities in the Northeast Peten, Guatemala T. Patrick Culbert; 7. Dynastic historys and cultural evolution at Copan, Honduras William L. Fash, and Davis S. Stuart; 8. Diversity and continuity in Maya civilization Robert S. Sharer; 9. Elite interaction during the terminal classic period: new evidence from Chichen Itza Linnea H. Wren, and Peter Schmidt; 10. Royal visits and other intersite relationships among the classic Maya Linda Schele, and Peter Mathews; 11. Inside the black box: defining Maya polity Norman Hammond; 12. Maya elite interaction - through a glass, sideways Norman Yoffee; 13. Maya political history and elite interaction: a summary view T. Patrick Culbert.