Drawing of a Text from Jonuta, Tabasco Reply

JonutaJust a brief post this time, to share a drawing I made some years ago of an interesting inscription from Jonuta, Tabasco. The beautiful panel fragment on which these glyphs appear was published in Proskouriakoff’s Classic Maya Sculpture (Figure 69b) in a painfully small reproduction of a photograph taken sometime in the 1940s by Hasso von Winning. This sketch (made for my dissertation) was based on a larger print of the same photograph, now housed in the archives of the Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic Inscriptions at the Peabody Museum. I have no information on the panel’s current whereabouts, nor of any record of it since von Winning’s image.

No time to offer any full commentary on the text, but it does contain a number of interesting grammatical features. One is a full spelling i-yu-wa-la for the demonstrative particle iyuwal, “and then…,” which later appears in Ch’olti’ as a progressive aspect marker, with cognate forms in other Ch’olan languages. Several other examples of the same i-yu-wa-la glyph appear before verbs on Stela J at faraway Copan.

The crisp style of these glyphs suggests to me a date of about 9.17. or 9.18.0.0.0. Jonuta remains a very poorly known site, but in the Late Classic it evidently held some importance as a major political and ritual center along the extreme lower Usumacinta River, well downriver from Pomona and the Pakbu’ul kingdom.

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