Notes on a Sacrifice Scene Reply

by David Stuart, The University of Texas at Austin

The Late Classic cacao vase K8719 (from Justin Kerr’s The Maya Vase Database) depicts one of the more grisly scenes of human sacrifice known from Maya art. (Happy Halloween!). The surrounding imagery and texts provide some interesting tidbits of information about the timing and setting of such events, and also how they related to the pomp and circumstance of royal performance in the courts of the Classic era.

Figure 1. Rollout of vase K8719  (Photograph by Justin Kerr).

Figure 1. Rollout of vase K8719 (Photograph by Justin Kerr).

In the scene we see a king seated upon what looks to be a portable throne and looking on a scene of decapitation sacrifice.  The victim, perhaps a war captive, lies prone upon a stone altar and before a small stela. His head lies atop the stone monument, placed on a surface of amate paper-cloth (huun) and suggesting some sort of corporeal metaphor involving the upright stone (see Stuart 1996 for a further discussion of steel-body symbolism). Judging by similar scenes (see K8351), the familiar stela-altar pairing one so often see at Maya sites was often a formal place for human sacrifice. Indeed, I suspect that most stelae-and-altars erected in the plazas (Figure 2) were conceived as settings for the execution of prisoners, much as we see on this vase. To the left of the dead victims are two performers in fantastic animal costumes, wearing red scarves. As Elliot Lopez-Finn points out to me, similar portly animal performers are depicted on other vessels (see K1835, K4947. K4960). And elsewhere many similar clawed figures with red scarves are explicitly identified as wahy beings, who I have interpreted as the spooky embodiments of witchcraft and dark forces wielded by Maya rulers and elites (Stuart 2005). On this vessel the costumed figures are performing in an extraordinary setting of courtly sacrifice, perhaps as executioners that embody the animated forces of the king’s power and control over life and death.

Figure 2. Uncarved stelae and altars at Tikal.

Figure 2. Uncarved stelae and altars at Tikal.

Figure 3. Main text caption from K8719. (Photograph by J. Kerr)

Figure 3. Main text caption from K8719. (Photograph by J. Kerr)

A lengthy text runs down the middle of the image above the slain victim (Figure 3). Unfortunately it shows considerable modern repainting and “touching up” by someone who knew nothing of hieroglyphs. Nevertheless, we can see that it is a complex name caption for the seated king, opening with a CR date and then perhaps the possessed noun u baah, “the person of…” (A2 and B2). The date looks to me to be 4 Ahau 13 Yax, correspond to the k’atun ending 9.15.0.0.0. (August 16, 731 A.D.). The royal name and accompanying titles extend down into the vertical column. At B3 we see the well preserved sequence CHAN-na-K’INICH, after an initial name glyph that is largely illegible. This may well be the name Tayel Chan K’inich, in reference to the Late Classic king of the Ik’ polity who is named on a number of other vessels (Just 2012:102-123, Reents-Budet, Guenter, Bishop and Blackman 2013, Tokovinine and Zender 2013). A possible Ik’ emblem glyph might be at block A7, though again much garbled by the vase’s “restorer.”

A date of 731 A.D. agrees well with Tayel Chan K’inch, who we know from other sources to have been in power by 726 and seems to have ruled for at least a decade afterwards, perhaps a good deal more (Tokovinine and Zender 2012: 43). The 9.15.0.0.0 k’atun ending would have been among the major ceremonial event of his reign, and I suggest that the scene on this vase depicts at least one of the ceremonies from that very day.

Ascribing this vessel to the Ik’ polity and its workshops also is in keeping with the general style and color palette of the scene. Orange-colored glyphs are known from other pots of this style. We also see elaborate animal costumes worn by rulers and other performers on many other Ik’ vessels (K533, 1439, among others). As already noted, I suspect that this pair of weird-looking performers are the sacrificers responsible for the beheading. The white color here, also worn by the king, may be significant, as we find white sacrificers also shown on K2781 and K8351.

8719txt2hi

Figure 4. The glyph aj laj, “finished one,” near the victim. (Photo by J. Kerr)

Placed near the stela and just above the legs of the sacrificial victim is a lone hieroglyph (Figure 4) readable as AJ-la-ja, for aj laj. This presumably is an agentive noun based on the root laj, meaning “end, finish, die,” found throughout lowland and highland Mayan languages (Kaufman [2003] reconstructs the common Mayan form as *laj or *laaj). The connections of this word to death are widespread, and are particularly acute in colonial Tzotzil, where we find laj meaning “be dead” and the nominalized form lajel, “death” (Laughlin 1988,I: 241). There can be little doubt that here we are meant to read the glyph on the pot as a somewhat obvious descriptor of the slain figure as “the finished one, the deceased.” As far as I am aware this is a unique example of such a title used to refer to a sacrificial victim.

Overall this vessel offers a remarkable and maybe even surprising look into the nature of Maya calendar ceremonies. Written records of k’atun endings, for example, feature the ritual acts of kings who “bind the stone” or “cast the incense.” They never directly mention human sacrifices nor the bloody anointing of stelae, and why they don’t raises an interesting issue worth pondering further. The wider canvas of a portable cylindrical vase perhaps allowed for such grisly displays, more so than the stiff and narrow face of a stone stela set in a plaza. For whatever reason, cacao vases that circulated at the courts of the Late Classic period were deemed a more appropriate media for the display of some darker subject-matter, including the gorier aspects of royal ceremony and performance.

Sources Cited:

Just, Bryan. 2012. Dancing into Dreams: Maya Vase Painting of the Ik’ Kingdom. Princeton University Art Museum, Princeton.

Kaufman, Terrence. 2003. A Preliminary Mayan Etymological Dictionary. PDF ms.

Reents-Budet, Dorie, Stanley Guenter, Ronald L. Bishop and M. James Blackman. 2013. Identity and Interaction: Ceramic Styles and Social History of the Ik’ Polity, Guatemala. In Motul de San Jose: Politics, History, and Economy in a Classic Maya Polity, edited by A. E. Foias and K. F. Emery, pp. 67-93. University Press of Florida, Gainesville.

Stuart, David 2005. Glyphs on Pots. Sourcebook for the 2005 Maya Meetings. Department of Art and Art History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Tokovinine, Alexandre, and Marc Zender. 2013. Lords of Windy Water: The Royal Court of Motul de San Jose in Classic Maya Inscriptions. In Motul de San Jose: Politics, History, and Economy in a Classic Maya Polity, edited by A. E. Foias and K. F. Emery, pp. 30-66. University Press of Florida, Gainesville.

The Reading of Two Dates from the Codz Pop at Kabah, Yucatan 3

by David Stuart and Meghan Rubenstein, The University of Texas at Austin

A few important hieroglyphic inscriptions are known from the ruins of Kabah, Yucatan, but most of them remain poorly published, much less analyzed. The site’s lengthiest inscription comes from on the so-called Hieroglyphic Platform (2B2), and remains a disordered puzzle that has thus far eluded much in the way of interpretation (Grube 1986). The dedicatory panels from the Manos Rojas structure have been only partially documented, published and studied, and require further investigation (Carrasco and Pérez de Heredia 1996, Pérez de Heredia 1998, Graña-Behrens 2002). Perhaps the best-known inscription of Kabah comes from the well-preserved carved doorjambs on the eastern side of the so-called Codz Pop (Structure 2C6), one of the most ornately decorated buildings in the long history of Maya architecture (Figure 1, 2).

Figure 1. Structure 2C6 (the  Codz Pop) of Kabah, Yucatan (Photograph by M. Rubenstein)

Figure 1. Structure 2C6 (the Codz Pop) of Kabah, Yucatan (Photograph by M. Rubenstein)

Analyses of the date inscribed on the Codz Pop jamb have been wildly inconsistent and contradictory. Here we would like to clarify the reading of this date once and for all (we hope) as well as announce a new date from the same structure, inscribed on another door jamb recently discovered in excavations conducted by INAH in 2013. We hope that pointing to these two dates will help to refine the chronology of Kabah’s architectural history, and by extension the chronology of the Terminal Classic period in the Puuc as a whole.

The Eastern Door

With the exception of the famous western façade of the Codz Pop (Figure 1), the most reproduced image from Kabah is the set of carved doorjambs located on the eastern side of the same building (Figure 2). The stone jambs from Room 21 were first excavated, photographed, and reburied between 1934 and 1935 by Harry Pollock during his architectural survey for the Carnegie Institution of Washington. Drawings of the jambs by two different illustrators are included in Pollock’s masterwork on the architecture of the Puuc region (1980: 196, 197), and their first formal publication seems to have been in Proskouriakoff’s A Study of Classic Maya Sculpture (1950: 169, Fig 103a,b).

Figure 2. The north jamb from Room 21 (Eastern Door) of the Codz Pop, (a) detail photo by D. Stuart, (b) Drawing by M. Rubenstein.

Figure 2. The north jamb from Room 21 (Eastern Door) of the Codz Pop, (a) detail photo by D. Stuart, (b) Drawing by M. Rubenstein.

The carved jambs of Room 21 mirror each other: in the upper scene, a dance is performed, and in the lower scene, a prisoner subjugated. A horizontal hieroglyphic band separates the two events. Neither Pollock nor Proskouriakoff attempted to interpret these inscriptions.

Excavations at Kabah in the early 1990s, under the direction of Ramón Carrasco Vargas at the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH), renewed interest in the Codz Pop jambs known at the time. Carrasco and José Ligorred Perramón, the archaeologist who oversaw work at the Codz Pop, relocated them using Pollock’s reports. They also offered the first interpretation of the inscription (Carrasco et.al. 1991: 83; Carrasco and Pérez 1996: 302; Ligorred Perramón 1993: 196-97). The southern jamb, broken at the hieroglyphic band, is illegible. For the north jamb, they proposed a reading of the Calendar Round date as 2 Chuen 3 Xul (this and other dates are written in the Yucatecan system). Ligorred Perramón calculated its placement in the years 987 or 1195, but leaned toward the earlier of these based on associated ceramic and architectural data (1993:196). This would place the Long Count at 10.7.19.5.11 2 Chuen 3 Xul (March 16, 987), making for one of the very latest monument dates in all of the Maya area.

Soon after this Linda Schele and Nikolai Grube proposed a different calculation for the date on the north jamb, placing it a century earlier at 10.2.13.15.11 2 Chuen 3 Xul, in the year 883 (Schele and Grube 1995: 203). Schele’s field drawing, published alongside their analysis, seems to confirm the reading of the Calendar Round as 2 Chuen 3 Xul, but settling on an earlier position in the calendric cycle than Ligorred Perramón.

Grube, in his appendix to his overview of hieroglyphic inscriptions from northwest Yucatan (1994: 344), offered a different analysis of the date, reading the month as Muan and not as Xul. He lists the date for the jambs as 10.1.10.0.11, or October 14, 859. Daniel Graña-Behrens also noted this in his later dissertation on the Northwest Yucatan (2002: 393). Graña-Behrens does not settle on a year, however, but suggests 807, 859, or 911.

To summarize: In the short span between 1991 and 2002 no less than six(!) assessments of this inscribed date on the Codz Pop were proposed or at least considered, ranging over an almost three hundred year span: 807, 859, 883, 911, 987, or 1195. The situation raises a highly confusing and important archaeological question, and above all reveals just how little is known about the chronology of the Puuc area in the Terminal Classic period.

FIgure 3. Detail of the text on the northern jamb of Room 21. (Photograph by D. Stuart)

FIgure 3. Detail of the text on the northern jamb of Room 21. (Photograph by D. Stuart)

Here we would like to clarify that the reading of the date on the Room 21 jamb is certainly 2 Chuen 3 Muan, just as Grube and Graña-Behrens proposed. Although Schele and others had suggested Xul as the month glyph, the contours and features of the month sign clearly show it to be a bird with a –ni suffix. This can only be read as Muan (MUWAAN-ni). We can narrow this further by proposing that the two most likely placements of 2 Chuen 3 Muan in the Long Count are:

10.1.10.0.11 2 Chuen 3 Muan (October 14, 859)
10.4.2.13.11 2 Chuen 3 Muan (October 1, 911)

A placement one Calendar Round earlier, in 807, seems far too early considering other dates from buildings in this same “florescent” Puuc style. Of these two, we consider 859 to be the most likely, agreeing with the previous proposals by Grube and Graña-Behrens.

The event recorded with this date on the north jamb of Room 21 seems to be “his death” (U-KAM?-mi-ya, u kamiiy) surely in reference to the scene of a warrior being slain in the image below the text band. The text on the southern jamb of the same doorway, given further information no doubt, is unfortunately destroyed.

The Northern Door

In 2013, excavations overseen by Lourdes Toscano Hernández and Gustavo Novelo Rincón of INAH revealed two important doorjambs originally placed within the central doorway of the northern room of the Codz Pop complex. This is Room 1 of Structure 2C6. Similar to the examples from Room 21, each jamb is carved with images divided by rows of hieroglyphs. In this case, we have three scenes on the eastern jamb and three scenes on the western jamb, with a total of four bands of text separating them.

Figure 4. Text band from the jamb of the northern doorway. (Photograph by ***; Preliminary drawing by D. Stuart)

Figure 4. Text band from the jamb of the northern doorway. (Photograph by M. Rubenstein; Preliminary drawing by D. Stuart)

The upper band of the eastern jamb records a date using a variation of the Yucatecan style, where a Calendar Round is described by its position in a numbered tun within a named k’atun.

[9-CIMI] U-K’IN-ni-le tu-8-TE’-e SUUTZ’-tz’i u-ti-ya tu-4-TUUN-ni 1 a-AJAW-wa ?-cha?-ja?
[Bolon Kimi] u k’iniil tu waxak-te’ suutz’ uhtiiy tu kan tuun (ti) juun ajaw ?..aj
Nine Cimi is the day on the eighth of Zotz’, it happened in the fourth stone (year) of 1 Ahau…

1 Ahau marks a specific k’atun ending of the Maya calendar, which can only correspond to 10.3.0.0.0 1 Ahau 3 Yaxk’in. The date falls in the fourth tun of that k’atun, or in the 360 days after 10.2.4.0.0. The month position 8 Zotz’ narrows this further to one possibility (again in the Yucatecan system):

10.2.3.11.6 9 Cimi 8 Zotz (March 9, 873)

The k’atun ending recorded on this northern doorway firmly anchors its date to 873 A.D. In doing so it should affirm the placement of the eastern door’s date (in an earlier phase of the building) to 859, only fourteen years prior.

Conclusions

The new jambs from the Codz Pop show a date falling in the year 873, helping to confirm one of many previous readings of the date from the eastern door as 859. It is important to note that these two dates might conform to the overall construction sequence of the Codz Pop and its modification over time. That is, the later of the two is associated with the northern extension of the structure that appears to have been a later addition to the original building. That being said, it would be a mistake to take the two dates as simple dedication records. As noted, the eastern door records the death of Kabah’s vanquished enemy, whereas the nature of the event on northern jamb remains to be determined. Nevertheless, the anchoring of these two dates should help us be confident in the chronological placement of the Codz Pop, and of its place in the wider context of archaeology in the Puuc region.

Acknowledgements

We are most grateful to our colleagues Lourdes Toscano Hernández and Gustavo Novelo Rincón for their permission to share our analysis of the date recently discovered at the Codz Pop complex. A more thorough study of the building’s dates and construction sequence will be produced by them at a future date. A formal presentation of the new Codz Pop jambs will take place at the upcoming Maya Meetings at UT-Austin in January. We also thank Sid Hollander for pointing out a couple of typos (now corrected) in our transcription of Maya dates.

Sources Cited

Carrasco Vargas, Ramón, et. al. 1991. Proyecto Kabah: Informe de los trabajos realizados en la temporada 1991. Tomo II. Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia, Centro Regional Yucatán.

Carrasco Vargas, Ramón, and Eduardo Pérez de Heredia. 1996. “Los últimos gobernadores de Kabah.” In Eighth Palenque Round Table, 1993. M. Macri and J. McHargue, eds. pp. 297-307. San Francisco: The Pre-Columbian Art Research Institute.

Graña-Behrens, Daniel. 2002. Die Maya-Inschriften aus Nordwestyukatan, Mexiko. Thesis, Fakultät der Rheinischen-Friedrich-Wilhelms, University of Bonn.

Grube, Nikolai. 1986. Die Hieroglyphenplattform von Kabah, Yucatán, México. Mexicon Vol. VIII (1): 13-17.

_____________. 1994. “Hieroglyphic Sources for the History of Northwest Yucatan.” In Hidden Among the Hills: Maya Archaeology of the Northwest Yucatan Peninsula. H.J. Prem, ed. pp. 316-358. Acta Mesoamericana. Möckmühl: Verlag von Flemming.

Ligorred Perramón, José de Calasanz. 1993. La escultura Puuc: Análsis iconológico del Codz Pop de Kabah. Thesis, Escuela Nacional de Antropología e Historia.

Pérez de Heredia, Eduardo. 1998. El edificio de las Manos Rojas de Kabah, Yucatán: chronologia y funcionalidad. Thesis, Facultad de Ciencias Antropológicas, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán.

Pollock, Harry Evelyn Dorr. 1980. The Puuc: an Architectural Survey of the Hill Country of Yucatan and Northern Campeche, Mexico. Cambridge: Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University.

Proskouriakoff, Tatiana. 1950. A Study of Classic Maya Sculpture. Washington, D.C.: Carnegie Institution of Washington.

Schele, Linda, and Nikolai Grube. 1995. Notebook for the XIXth Maya Hieroglyphic Workshop at Texas: Late Classic and Terminal Classic Warfare. Austin: Art Department, University of Texas.

Pehk and “Parliaments”

by Stephen Houston, Brown University

Mayan languages often refer to assemblies, convocations, and gatherings.

Colonial Tzotzil speaks of ch’akob k’op, a meeting marked by deliberative speech. In the same language, tzoblej, “gathering,” denotes an accumulation of people (Laughlin 1988, I:174, 195, 257). A language of roughly of similar date, Ch’olti’ offers molo, “gather” [congrejar], and pacte, “gather people” [congregar jente] (Robertson et al. 2010:307, 327).

Such encounters can take subtle shadings. Ch’orti’, a descendant of Ch’olti’, labels one kind of meeting—a person overtaking another—by its own special descriptive. This is tahwi, perhaps in the sense of “find,” or, as embedded within a phrase, intahwi a’ani ni tatar ta bi’ir, “I met (or overtook) my father on the trail” (Wisdom 1950:659; see also Robertson et al. 2010:63). What these words emphasize is the act of people moving in space to interact with others.

Another word, pehk, beckons here. First studied by perceptive colleagues (Beliaev and Davletshin 2002; Beliaev and Safronov 2004, 2009; Hull 2000:17), its detection in Maya writing stems, it seems, from an unpublished observation by Werner Nahm (Schele and Grube 1997:96-97). Pehk is attested in all Ch’olan languages. Examples from Ch’olti’ are largely nominalized, including pehcahel [pehkahel] as well as the more weighty, even judicial chacpehcahel, “final [great] judgment” or “sentence” (Robertson et al. 2010:327). The sense is of serious language, words that communicate power, command, and consequence. In Morán’s “religious section,” our best source on fuller phrases in Ch’olti’, pehkahel is a benediction from saints and angels and, ultimately, the word of God (Robertson et al. 2010:46, 48, 52, 59, 88, 101, 102 103, 105, 106, 107, 109-110, 164, 165, 168, 198). The momentous, confessional implications are clear. A pehkahel promises salvation; as a satanic lie, it endangers the soul.

Pehk goes back to Common Ch’olan *pehk-ä , a transitive verb meaning to “call” or to “talk” (Kaufman and Norman 1984:128). There are many descendants. Modern Chontal employs pekän, “call to conversation” (Smailus 1975:163), Ch’ol the very similar pejkan, “speak with” or “read aloud,” but also the more racy (and presumably related) “fall in love” and “copulate with” (Aulie and Aulie 1998:92). Ch’orti’, too, the gold standard for glyphs, presents a full range of terms, some verbal, others transformed into nouns (Wisdom 1950:562-563; sources marked “PM” are from Pérez Martínez et al. 1996:166).

pehk, “a call, a shout”
pehka, “call or shout to, call one’s name, speak”
pejka, “call, invite, invoke, read” (PM)
pehkar, “call, shout, greeting”
pehkse, “command, summon”
pehksah, “command, summons, a summons”
ah pehksah, “Indian summoner (called ‘third alcalde’) at the pueblo juzgado”
pejna’r , “call, invitation, convocation” (PM, note the elided /k/)

These terms involve (1) vocalizations, often loud ones, (2) an insistent summons to serious talk, and (3) at least two parties. There is a summoner and another who hears and obeys that command. Pehk strongly encourages others to come close for further talk.

Figure 1. The pe syllable in Landa’s abecedario (photograph by George Stuart).

Figure 1. The pe syllable in Landa’s abecedario (photograph by George Stuart).

As Nahm had doubtless noticed, pehk is detectible in Maya writing by means of Bishop de Landa’s abecedario (Figure 1). The relevant sign, a syllable, lurks to the side, accompanied by an inverted “v” to signal insertion. The sign itself is an animal head, at least to judge from its dots for whiskers near the snout and long dropping ear. Above, the letter p advertises its syllabic value.

Landa’s abecedario is quite consistent in the matter of contrast. It places an unglottalized consonant just before a glottalized one. Accordingly, ka appears before k’a and ku before k’u. Landa’s p’e [pp by Colonial Yukateko spelling, a glyph that occurs in Classic texts too) should thus follow pe. Obviously, there was a mistake, and the scribe had to improvise with an awkward insertion. As for the vowel, e, that would be expected from the Spanish pronunciation of the letter.

But why did Landa, or whoever copied the manuscript, drop the syllable and then fuss to insert it? The answer may come from the way in which the Relación was assembled. When transferred from some earlier source—the manuscript cannot be original to Landa himself—the list of syllables was botched, I suspect, by mechanical and inattentive copying. The mistake is telling. Historians have increasingly seen the Relación as a “complex and messy” document compiled over one or two centuries (Restall and Chuchiak 2002:664).

With the abecedario, the challenge has always been, from Knorosov’s time on, to relate a particular sign to its Classic-era precursor. As observed by Nahm et al., the most obvious candidate is the rabbit head, T759 in Eric Thompson’s signary, with its distinctive flint markings in the ear. The sign is neither common nor vanishingly rare. (I do not regard all rabbit heads in the script as having this reading, e.g., the ko-?-ma on K5164 and Dos Pilas Panel 15:F1; the extension of pe to other examples warrants caution; cf. Beliaev 2004:122, fig. 2.) One context, from the name for the kingdom and place of La Mar, Chiapas, appends an ‘e syllable (Figure 2; see also Beliaev 2004:129 fn. 1). This expanded spelling reinforces the likely vowel of the rabbit head—a feature indicated by the abecedario itself—and argues that, as a proposal, pe is correct. For specialists, it also yields a probable reading of pe-‘e TUUN-ni AJAW for the La Mar title (see Tonina Monument 91:pD1) or pe-‘e-TUUN-ni for its physical location (Piedras Negras 4:H1, in a reference to the founding, K’OT?-yi, of that city in the late 6th century AD).

Figure 2 pe'tuun

Figure 2. Glyphs for La Mar and its lord: (a) Piedras Negras Panel 4:H1 (photograph by Teobert Maler); and (b) Tonina Monument 91:pD1 (drawing by Ian Graham, Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions Project, Harvard University).

The meaning of pe’ remains elusive, but the word could highlight a feature of the landscape. Chontal pe’, “crest,” is suggestive in this respect (Keller and Luciano 1997:191), and, in fact, Charles Golden informs me that La Mar lies at the base of a sierra—the “crest”?– separating the city from the Santo Domingo Valley to the west (personal communication, 2014). For his part, David Stuart wonders whether some of the rabbit heads deploy a “doubler,” perhaps to write pe-pe (personal communication, 2014; see Piedras Negras, Stela 16, D5). Other examples may elucidate the matter.

Figure 3. Summons of gods (Dresden 8a).

Figure 3. Summons of gods (Dresden 8a).

As noted by colleagues, pehk occurs in the Postclassic Dresden Codex. There, it appears as a passive verb, pehkaj, invoking, calling to, inviting, particular gods (Figure 3). The agent is unspecified, however—was it the person doing the reading and, in a sense, “activating” the document? In the Dresden, a few pehk appear to be nominalized (D14a). Two features need added mention. The first is that almost all the deities extend their hands, a gesture indicating speech, as Karl Taube pointed out to me long ago. On one page, where speech itself may be intended (D14a), their mouths gape open, as though projecting sound. The second feature is that the examples on D14a surely cue pehk but use only pe. There are no ka syllables to complete the spellings. I suspect the final velar consonant was omitted with no loss of meaning. Perhaps it was uttered as a glottal—and, to be sure, it gives pause about the reading of the La Mar sign, which may connote other possibilities than simply pe’. Modern Ch’orti’ shows the operation of consonant assimilation in one secure case: *pejkna’r > pejna’r. Under certain conditions, the k appears, then, to be optional or elided, an attribute to be revisited below.                       

What intrigues us here is the appearance of pehk in the Usamacinta drainage and beyond, all during the Classic period. Beliaev, Davletshin, and Safronov draw useful attention to the spellings on the Denver and Brussels panels (so-named from the repositories of these works), as well as a reference on Bonampak (BPK) Sculptured Stone 5. However, I wish to explore the broader implications of these references and others, beyond the details of local history.

Figure 4. Bonampak Sculptured Stone 5 (close-up from Claudia Brittenham).

Figure 4.

The act of pehk, “call, summon, invite,” occurs in very particular contexts. One of them is BPK Sculptured Stone 5 (Biro 2011:50-51). It presents a well-defined succession of events. Exactly 4 winal (80 days) before a Bonampak ruler’s accession on 9.10.10.8.16, June 1, AD 643, a figure labeled ju-chi-? was “called, summoned” or “invited,” pehkaj. The reference occurs at position H8-H9 on the monument and dates to 9.10.10.4.16, March 13, AD 643 (Figure 4). (The chi occurs in both “hand” or “agave” variants, perhaps with another conflated sign, an animal head.) Apparently, ju-chi-? needed to be in place prior to enthronement. What kind of person was this? High-resolution photos of Bonampak Sculptured Stone 1 suggests that the same person, or at least someone with the same name, also participated in an accession ceremony (Figure 5; Alexandre Tokovinine convinced me the name was not merely a title). It may be that this individual stored or held royal regalia and then proffered them to the new monarch. The main image on Sculpture Stone 5, which depicts a lord lifting a headband jewel of kingship, must pertain to this action. But the main point for this blog: he was “called” or “invited” from somewhere else, by royal summons.

Figure 5. Bonampak Sculptured Stone 1 (close-up from Claudia Brittenham).

Figure 5. Bonampak Sculptured Stone 1 (This and Figure 4 from Claudia Brittenham).

The Denver and Brussels panels have been plausibly interpreted by Beliaev and Safronov as recording a sea change in local politics (Figure 6, Beliaev and Safronov 2009). A ruler of Bonampak was captured on April 8, AD 693 (9.13.1.1.5 3 Chicchan 8 Zip), followed one day later by the summons of a long list of minor figures. Most have toponymic identifers only, suggesting they did not merit more personal references. In Beliaev and Safronov’s interpretation, these lordlings, two of them former companions of the vanquished king of Bonampak, were now compelled to switch sides and present themselves at the court of rival kingdom. Simon Martin tells me that Palenque Hieroglyphic Stairway 1 yields a similar expression, albeit with different historical characters. The Palenque Stairway text also uses the highly enigmatic yi-ta-ji phrase, perhaps in the sense of “co-capture” or “co-submission.”

Figure 6. Brussels Panel (drawing by Alexander Safronov).

Figure 6. Brussels Panel (drawing by Alexander Safronov).

Figure 7. Summons or invitation in Mural of the 96 Glyphs, N1, Acropolis, Room 29sub, Ek Balam (drawing by Alfonso Lacadena).

Figure 7. Summons or invitation in Mural of the 96 Glyphs, N1, Acropolis, Room 29sub, Ek Balam (drawing by Alfonso Lacadena).

The Usumacinta is not the only area to refer to pehk. The Mural of the 96 Glyphs at Ek Balam records what may be a nominalized version of the word. It shows the summons of the “head-throne” attendant (ba-tz’a-ma) of a foreign lord, Chak Jutwi Chan Ek’, by the local ruler, U Kit, (Figure 7, Lacadena García-Gallo 2004:fig. 18b)—the eroded beginning of this text may allude to other figures, too. A yet more intriguing case of geopolitics occurs on the recently discovered Panel 1 of La Corona (Figure 8). Already enthroned as a lord or ajaw, a young magnate from La Corona set off for Calakmul. Six days later, his overlord, Yuknoom Ch’e’n of Calakmul, performed a “calling” or “inviting” (u-pe-ji-?). I believe this expression is a nominalization in which, by expected phonological process, the –k of pehk has been assimilated to its suffixes, ji-?.

The historical scene is easy to imagine. Close your eyes: the sweaty-palmed lord of La Corona paces, cooling his heels after an arduous, mandatory journey. He is then brought into the royal presence on Nov 13, AD 673. An honor but probably fraught with danger. Meeting an overlord always is.

Figure 8. Summons by Yuknoom Ch’e’n. La Corona Panel 1:G4-H6 (drawing by David Stuart).

Figure 8. Summons by Yuknoom Ch’e’n. La Corona Panel 1:G4-H6 (drawing by David Stuart).

The sculptor did not need to indicate who the invited lord might be, for the context made that clear. The motivation must have been to prepare for an event 12 days later. At that time, the sons of Yuknoom Ch’e’n—there were 7 of them—undertook an important ritual, possibly involving the hands, k’ab, that involves elements not yet fully deciphered (?-ba-ja tu-k’a[ba]). My impression is that young lords of a kingdom were asked to attend or witness a ceremony involving more exalted youths.

In larger perspective, pehk resonates with practices elsewhere. Consider the concept of “parliaments” in the European past. These were occasions when, at royal summons, people assembled to talk, negotiate, advise, hear, and obey. They were not always about the Younger Pitt, the assertion of non-noble rights or Charles Fox and Whiggism. In this respect, later associations are unfortunate and unhelpful. Rather, as a word, “parliament,” comes from the plain idea of speaking and talking, parler, in a time of consultation and formal assembly. The English parliament, for example, descends from the Anglo-Saxon witenagemot or witan, a conciliar gathering of high nobles (Maddicott 2010; Roach 2014; but see Fletcher 2011/12:423-424, for distancing of the Parliament from earlier institutions in England). These assemblies established consensus at difficult times, threaded through or adjudicated difficult cases, and allowed noble participation within a framework of regal will. Much the same, as Karl Taube reminds me, inflected the selection of Aztec rulers by a council of lords or some of the deliberations attested for Late Postclassic Yucatan. So too, perhaps, for the Classic Maya. In acts of pehk, underlings were called and invited, summoned to the royal presence. That these events coincided with dynastic turbulence—war, succession, perhaps the acknowledgement of successors and overlords—hints at how certain kings ruled, by decree and suasion, through spoken invitations that had to be accepted.

Acknowledgements:

Alexandre Tokovinine and, indirectly, Dmitri Beliaev, were most helpful with sources and access to a public presentation by Dmitri and his colleagues, Albert Davletshin and Alexandre Safronov. Alex and Simon Martin, too, corrected my view of certain dates and passages. Charles Golden helped with the physical positioning of La Mar, and Claudia Brittenham came to the rescue with high-resolution images of panels at Bonampak.

Sources Cited:

Aulie, Wilbur, and Evelyn W. de Aulie. 1978. [ed. Emily F. Scharfe de Stairs] Diccionario Ch’ol de Tumbalá, Chiapas, con variaciones dialectales de Tila y Sabanilla. Instituto Lingüístico de Verano, Mexico City.

Beliaev, Dmitri D. 2004. Wayaab’ Title in Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions: On the Problem of Religious Specialization in Classic Maya Society. In Maya Religious Practices: Processes of Change and Adaptation, Graña Behrens, Daniel, Nikolai Grube, Christian Prager, Frauke Sachse, Stefanie Teufel and Elisabeth Wagner, eds., pp. 121-130. Acta Mesoamericana, 14. Verlag Anton Saurwein, Markt Schwaben.

Beliaev, Dmitri D., and Albert Davletshin. 2002. Syllabic Sign for [pe] in the Classic Period. Unpublished manuscript.

Beliaev, Dmitri D., and Alexander Safronov 2004. Ak’e I Shukal’nakh: Istoriia I Politicheskaia Geografiia Gosudarstv Maiia Verkhnei Usumasinty [Ak'e and Shukalnah: History and Political Geography Maya states of the Upper Usumacinta]. In Drevnii Vostok I Antichnyi Mir. Trudy Kafedry Istorii Drevnego Mira Istoricheskogo Fakulteta Mgu, pp. 119-142. vol. 6, Moskva.

Beliaev Dmitri D., and Alexander Safronov. 2009. Saktzi, Ake, and, Xukalnaah: Reinterpreting the Political Geography of the Upper Usumasinta Region. Paper presented at the 14th European Maya Conference (November 13–14, 2009), https://www.academia.edu/7982378/Saktzi_Ake_and_Xukalnaah_Reinterpreting_the_Political_Geography_of_the_Upper_Usumasinta_Region_with_Alexander_Safronov_.

Bíró, Péter. 2011. Las piedras labradas 2, 4 y 5 de Bonampak y los reyes de Xukulnah en el siglo VII. Estudios de Cultura Maya XXIX:31-61.

Fletcher, Christopher. 2011/12. Review of John R. Maddicott, The Origins of the English Parliament, 924-1327. Revue historique 658: 423-424.

Hull, Kerry. 2000. Cosmological and Ritual Language in Ch’orti’. Report to the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, Inc. http://www.famsi.org/reports/99036/99036Hull01.pdf

Kaufman, Terrence S., and William M. Norman. 1984 An Outline of Proto-Cholan Phonology, Morphology, and Vocabulary. In John S. Justeson and Lyle Campbell, eds., Phoneticism in Mayan Hieroglyphic Writing, 77-166. Publication No. 9. Albany: Institution for Mesoamerican Studies, State University of New York at Albany.

Keller, Kathryn C., and Plácido Luciano Gerónimo. 1997. Diccionario Chontal de Tabasco. Instituto Lingüístico de Verano, Mexico City.

Kettunen, Hari, and Christophe Helmke. 2011. Introduction to Maya Hieroglyphs: XVI European Maya Conference. 12th ed. http://www.wayeb.org/download/resources/wh2011english.pdf.

Lacadena García-Gallo, Alfonso. 2004. The Glyphic Corpus from Ek’ Balam, Yucatán, México. Report to the Foundation for the Advancement of Mesoamerican Studies, Inc. http://www.famsi.org/reports/01057/.

Laughlin, Robert M. 1988. The Great Tzotzil Dictionary of Santa Domingo Zinacantán. 3 vols. Smithsonian Contributions to Anthropology, Number 31. Smithsonian Institution Press, Washington, DC.

Maddicott, John R. The Origins of the English Parliament, 924-1327. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Pérez Martínez, Vitalino, Federico García, Felipe Martínez, and Jeramias López. 1996. Diccionario Ch’orti’, Jocotán, Chiquimula. Proyecto Lingüístico Francisco Marroquin, Antigua Guatemala.

Restall, Matthew, and John F. Chuchiak. 2002. A Reevaluation of the Authenticity of Fray Diego de Landa’s Relación de las cosas de Yucatán. Ethnohistory 49(3):651-669.

Roach, Levi. 2014. Kingship and Consent in Anglo-Saxon England, 871–978: Assemblies and the State in the Early Middle Ages. Cambridge University Press, Cambridge.

Robertson, John S., Danny Law, and Robbie Haertel. 2010. Colonial Ch’olti’: The Seventeenth-Century Morán Manuscript. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman.

Schele, Linda, and Nikolai Grube. 1997. Workbook for the Maya Hieroglyphic Workshop: The Dresden Codex. March 8 -9, 1997. The University of Texas at Austin

Smailus, Ortwin. 1975. El Maya-Chontal de Acalan: Análisis lingüístico de un documento de los años 1610-1612. Centro de Estudios Mayas, UNAM, Mexico City.

Wisdom, Charles. 1950. Materials of the Chorti Language. Middle American Cultural Anthropology Microfilm Series 5, item 28. University of Chicago Library. [Retyped by Brian Stross]

Lagunita’s Unusual “Six Ajaw Stone” Reply

by David Stuart, The University of Texas at Austin

Stela 2 of Lagunita, Campeche. Photo: Ivan Sprajc.

Stela 2 of Lagunita, Campeche. Photo: Ivan Sprajc.

The rediscovery of the ruins of Lagunita, Campeche, by Ivan Sprajc and his team has been widely cited in the news of late. This is indeed an exciting development. The site was first visited back in the 1970s by Eric von Euw, who was then working with Harvard’s Maya Corpus program. He photographed and sketched a few stelae, but after his visit the site of Lagunita became “lost,” at least to archaeologists. When I was working on the Corpus Project, Ian Graham often mentioned to me how much he wanted us to go find Lagunita, but we never had the time given our other commitments in the field.

Figure 2. Lagunita, Stela 2. Photo: Ivan Sprajc.

Figure 2. Lagunita, Stela 2. Photo: Ivan Sprajc.

The hieroglyphic text on Lagunita, Stela 2 is perhaps the most interesting of those I know from the site (solely from von Euw’s photos and drawings; the new project there may reveal more cool things). It is read in individuals rows, not columns, and opens with the date 9.14.0.0.0 6 Ahau 13 Muan (711 A.D.). Thereafter we find a very unusual appearance of the Dedicatory Formula (or, more awkwardly, the “Primary Standard Sequence”) — the stock phrase we so often see on inscribed portable objects, especially ceramic vessels, but hardly ever on stelae. Here the “step” (T’AB?-ya) glyph is the main dedicatory verb, followed by a possessed noun referring to the stele itself: “his carved Six Ajaw stone (wak ajaw tuun).” Back in 2005 I commented on this odd Lagunita text in my overview of the Dedicatory Formula (Stuart 2005) (Figure 3).

Figure 3. Drawing od Dedicatory Formula on Lagunita, Stela 2. From Stuart 2005.

Figure 3. Drawing of Dedicatory Formula on Lagunita, Stela 2. From Stuart 2005.

The name of the ruler is eroded unfortunately, but he seems to be called a “four k’atun lord.”

It’s exciting that Lagunita is now found again, and it will be very interesting to see what other tidbits, epigraphic and otherwise, come from the site.

SOURCES CITED:

Stuart, David. 2005. Glyphs on Pots: Decoding Classic Maya Ceramics. Excerpt from the 2005 Sourcebook for the Maya Meetings, The University of Texas at Austin. Department of Art and Art History, UT Austin, Austin, TX.

Deathly Sport

by Stephen Houston, Brown University

On a scorching day in July 2006, my wife and I happened to visit a Roman necropolis at Carmona, just west of Sevilla, Spain – not for nothing is this called the sartén de Europa, with temperatures in excess of 46° celsius! But there, at Roman “Carmo,” the tombs were cool, richly painted in parts. Some dozens of meters away, we saw a triclinium (formal dining room) for funerary banquets and an amphitheater to house games in honor of the dead.

The ancient Mediterranean has a long tradition of such games. Homer, in the Iliad, speaks with appreciative bloodlust of the sporting events for Patroclus, the late, beloved companion of Achilles: “Raising their arms, their powerful fists, they [the participants] went at one another. Their hands exchanged some heavy punches, landing with painful crunches on their jaws. From their limbs sweat ran down everywhere” (Bk 23, lines 847-851, trans. Ian Johnston). Ultimately, the tradition passed to the Lucanians at Paestum, south of Naples —where the scene of a gladiatorial fray embellishes the walls of a tomb—to what may be the first gladiatorial contests, also funerary, held at Rome in 264 BC (Potter 2012:187-190). In all such cases, the games pulsed with recollection of once-vibrant dead. As John Bodel, a friend and Latin epigraphist reminds me, the nuances were further layered to include the most basic struggle of all, between life and death (see Ville 1981).

Was some Maya ballplay of a mortuary nature too? Did the hurly-burly of sacred sport—a celebration of chance but also of preparation and athletic skill—link to royal tombs?

The grimmer features of the Post-Classic (to early Colonial) ballgame bear repeating. The Xibalba of the Popol Vuh, an abode of gods with names like mortal diseases, thudded with ballplay. It was in a ballcourt that the lords of Xibalba buried the defeated brothers One Hunahpu and Seven Hunahpu (Christenson 2007:125). Hunahpuh and Xbalanque, miraculous sons of One Hunahpu, later played in the “ballcourt of their father,” “sweeping [it] clear” (ibid.:125). When they bested the lords of Xibalba, the twins “left behind” the “heart of their father [One Hunahpu]…at Crushing Ballcourt” (ibid.:191). “Here you will called upon’…‘They shall worship you first. Your name shall not be forgotten’” (ibid.:191).

The Popol Vuh, a much later source, does not always resonate with practices and beliefs of the Classic period. Yet here it might, in what appear to be precise or notional alignments between the central axis of a ballcourt and a known royal tomb.

The more precise examples:

(1) At Dos Pilas, Guatemala, the ballcourt composed of Structures L4-17 and L4-16 (Houston 1993:Site Map 1) defines an axis that passes directly south to a pyramid, Structure L5-1. Excavations in 1991 showed that the pyramid contained the tomb of Dos Pilas’ Ruler 2, in a crypt almost precisely aligned with the axis of the ballcourt (Figure 1; Demarest et al. 1991). The sculptures on the ballcourt, Panels 11 and 12, deploy a version of the Dos Pilas Emblem that dates a generation or so later than the pyramid (Houston 1993:Figures 3-17, 3-18).

Figure 1. Alignment of ballcourt and pyramid at Dos Pilas, Guatemala, with red rectangle indicating location of royal tomb (map by Stephen Houston).

Figure 1. Alignment of ballcourt and pyramid at Dos Pilas, Guatemala, with red rectangle indicating location of royal tomb (map by Stephen Houston).

(2) The small ballcourt near Temple I at Tikal, Guatemala (Structure 5D-74-1st), has a central axis aligning with Burial 116, tomb of Jasaw Kaan K’awiil, ruler of Tikal (Figure 2; Coe 1990:Figures 257b, 284-86). There is an earlier ballcourt—said vaguely to be “within a regional ‘Early Classic’ era (whatever this attribution may communicate to reader)” (Coe 1990:650). It aligns almost exactly with Burial 116. Conceivably, the earlier ballcourt dictated the placement of Burial 116, which is off-center in the pyramid, below ground level and towards the front. Again, the crypt lines up with the axis of Structure 5D-74-1st and 2nd.

Figure 2. Alignment of Str. FD-74 with Burial 116 under Temple 1; earlier ballcourt, where it survives, cue in green (map by the Tikal Project, University of Pennsylvania).

Figure 2. Alignment of Str. FD-74 with Burial 116 under Temple 1; earlier ballcourt, where it survives, cue in green (map by the Tikal Project, University of Pennsylvania).

Then the ballcourts with rougher alignments:

(3) The first ballcourt at Copan, Honduras, dating to ca. AD 470, has a central axis that points to the front stairway of the Margarita tomb, and to the vicinity of Hunal, the probable tomb of the founder (Figure 3; Sharer et al. 2005:Figure 5.2). The axes of the crypts have the same orientation as the ballcourt (Sharer et al. 2005:Figure 5-7).

Figure 3. Alignment of Copan ballcourt with the Margarita building, Hunal building marked in blue (map by the Early Copan Acropolis Program, directed by Robert J. Sharer).

Figure 3. Alignment of Copan ballcourt with the Margarita building, Hunal building marked in blue (map by the Early Copan Acropolis Program, directed by Robert J. Sharer).

 

(4) A suggestive example comes from Ceibal, Guatemala (Figure 4). Hieroglyphic Stairway 1, in Structure A-14, refers to the “fire-entering” of a tomb on 9.15.16.7.17 Nov. 4, AD 747 (Graham 1996:59, Tablet 5:DD1). Presumably, the tomb lay nearby, perhaps behind the stairway, which seems to have been re-set in Classic times. Across from the stairway, but not precisely aligned with its axis, is the Structure A-19 ballcourt; its orientation leads to the join between Structures A-12 and A-14. Takeshi Inomata, who has been digging at Ceibal over the last years, kindly reports on what his project found. Digging in the southern end of Structure A-12, they discovered that the “construction mass dates to the Late Preclassic. Thin Late and Terminal Classic layers were sitting on the Preclassic building”; Takeshi also noted some evidence of an earlier Late Classic building beneath Structure A-14 (personal communication, July 2014). The question remains whether there is still a tomb to be found. The hieroglyphic text would indicate so (Stuart 1998:398, fn. 13).

Figure 4. Alignment of Ceibal A-19 ballcourt with possible tomb to the east (map by Ian Graham, Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions Project).

Figure 4. Alignment of Ceibal A-19 ballcourt with possible tomb to the east (map by Ian Graham, Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions Project).

(Incidentally, we have long assumed that the tomb mentioned on the Hieroglyphic Stairway belonged to a figure from the Early Classic period—someone named K’an Mo’ Bahlam. But I see no compelling reason to believe this, as the only date here is firmly Late Classic. To be sure, there is an Early Classic lord of Ceibal mentioned on Tablet 7, position MM1, of the Hieroglyphic Stairway, but with a different name. Notably, he is said to have played ball, pi-tzi!)

(5) A final example appears at the more distant location of Chichen Itza, Mexico, with a date some centuries later than #1-4. There, the Great Ballcourt lines up, at least approximately, with the enigmatic but suitably named Osario or “High Priest’s Grave,” the sole locus of attested royal burials at Chichen (Figure 5; Ruppert 1935; also Thompson 1938). The Great Ballcourt and the Osario date to about the same time, c. AD 1000-1100 AD (Braswell and Peniche May 2012:238).

Figure 5.  Alignment between the Great Ballcourt and the Osario at Chichen Itza (map by J. O. Kilmartin and J. P. O’Neil, with emendations by Karl Ruppert, Carnegie Institution of Washington).

Figure 5. Alignment between the Great Ballcourt and the Osario at Chichen Itza (map by J. O. Kilmartin and J. P. O’Neil, with emendations by Karl Ruppert, Carnegie Institution of Washington).

An empirical pattern doth not a theory make. Yet, at some sites, the Maya may have configured two buildings in unison. One contained a known or likely tomb or tombs, as at Chichen. (There must have been sustained knowledge of sub-surface remains.) The other was a ballcourt, its corridor pointing to a tomb, often at the same orientation. Several alignments seem more notional than precise, uncertain to satisfy a skeptic. And a few, as in my excavations with Héctor Escobedo at Structure K-5, Piedras Negras, could even be cenotaphic (Houston et al. 2008). A ballcourt, Structure K-6, lines up with a pyramid to a deceased queen but not, alas, to her tomb…or at least not one that we could find! (It could still lie off-axis, as we were only able to dig by means of a 2x2m shaft.) We do know the pyramid came first, and that the ballcourt, with its famous image of boxers, was a slightly later construction. In a personal communication, David Stuart also wonders whether Monument 171 at Tonina might be relevant (Stuart 2013): it shows a deceased lord playing with one still living.

Wendy Ashmore has written about ballcourt locations, emphasizing their southern position as “underworld” places of “transition” (Ashmore 1992:178, 179). I would mute her emphasis on “south” and suggest instead the dead could be to the north, south, and east too. Direction did not matter in these examples. Far more important was a specific mortuary intent and not, in Wendy’s words, a “cosmic template.” The fact that the glyph for tombs so often resembles half of the sign for a ballcourt—distinguished solely by the skull inside, nestled within a dark space (Stuart 1998:Figure 13)—raises the specter of a proposal. As in the Popol Vuh, some ballcourts bustled with the living but directed that activity towards the dead.

Acknowledgements: Takeshi Inomata of the University of Arizona generously responded to my questions about his excavations at Ceibal; Dave Stuart, too, helped with comments, as did John Bodel. I prepared some of these remarks for a workshop on Piedras Negras at Dumbarton Oaks, as facilitated by Dr. Colin McEwan, Joanne Pillsbury, and Mary Pye.

 

References Cited:

Ashmore, Wendy. 1992. Deciphering Maya Architectural Plans. In New Theories on the Ancient Maya, edited by Elin Danien and Robert J. Sharer, pp. 173-184. University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

Braswell, Geoffrey E., and Nancy Peniche May. 2012. In the Shadow of the Pyramid: Excavations of the Great Platform of Chichen Itza. In The Ancient Maya of Mexico: Reinterpreting the Past of the Northern Maya Lowlands, edited by Geoffrey E. Braswell, pp. 229-263. Equinox, London.

Christenson, Allen J. 2007. Popol Vuh: The Sacred Book of the Maya. University of Oklahoma Press, Norman.

Coe, William R. 1990. Excavations in the Great Plaza, North Terrace and North Acopolis of Tikal. Tikal Report 14. 6 vols. University Museum, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia.

Demarest, Arthur, Héctor Escobedo, Juan-Antonio Valdés, Lori Wright, Kitty Emery, and Stephen Houston. 1991 Arqueología, epigrafía y el descubrimiento de una tumba real en el centro ceremonial de Dos Pilas, Peten, Guatemala. U tz’ib 1(1):14-28.

Graham, Ian. 1996. Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions, Volume 7, Part 1: Seibal. Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology, Harvard University, Cambridge, MA.

Houston, Stephen D. 1993. Hieroglyphs and History at Dos Pilas: Dynastic Politics of the Classic Maya. University of Texas Press, Austin.

Houston, Stephen, Héctor Escobedo, and Zachary Nelson. 2008. Encontrando el contexto para la historia y la historia para el contexto: Excavaciones en la estructura K-5 de Piedras Negras, Guatemala. Mayab 20: 45-63.

Pontrandolfo, Angela, and Agnès Rouveret. 1992. Le tombe dipinte di Paestum. Franco Cosimo Panini, Modena.

Potter, David. 2012. The Victor’s Crown: A History of Ancient Sport from Homer to Byzantium. Oxford University Press, Oxford.

Ruppert, Karl. 1935. The Caracol at Chichen Itza, Yucatan, Mexico. Carnegie Institution of Washington, Publication 454. Carnegie Institution of Washington, DC.

_____________. 1952 Chichen Itza: Architectural Notes and Plans. Carnegie Institution of Washington, Publication 595. Washington, D.C.: Carnegie Institution of Washington.

Sharer, Robert J., David W. Sedat, Loa P. Traxler, Julia C. Miller, and Ellen E. Bell. 2005. Early Classic Royal Power in Copan: The Origins and Development of the Acropolis (ca. A.D. 250-600). In Copán: The History of an Ancient Maya Kingdom, edited by E. Wyllys Andrews and William L Fash, pp. 139-199. School of American Research Press, Santa Fe.

Stuart, David. 1998. “The Fire Enters His House”: Architecture and Ritual in Classic Maya Texts. In Function and Meaning in Classic Maya Architecture, edited by Stephen D. Houston, pp. 373-425. Dumbarton Oaks, Washington D.C.

Stuart, David. 2013. Tonina’s Curious Ballgame. http://decipherment.wordpress.com/2013/06/11/report-toninas-curious-ballgame/

Thompson, Edward H. 1938. The High Priest’s Grave, Chichen Itza, Yucatan, Mexico. Anthropological Series, Field Museum of Natural History 27(1). Chicago.

Ville, Georges. 1981. La gladiature en Occident des origines à la mort de Domitien. Bibliothèque des écoles françaises d’Athènes et de Rome, fasc. 245e. Ecole française de Rome, Rome.