Hieroglyphics on ancient Maya vessel deciphered

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The pre-Hispanic vessel found in the construction works of the Maya train is unique in its kind and has taps that belong to the ceramic group characteristic of the north and west of Yucatan.

The object dates from the Late Classic period (600-750/800 AD), and has a hieroglyphic band that alludes to a great Mayan lord named Cholom or Cho-lo-ma.

This character has been previously identified in other hieroglyphic texts, mainly with an elite group that ruled the Oxkintok archaeological site. The vessel has been related to other similar vessels under the title of uylul, “hearer”.

Maya vessel inscribed with dedication to “Cholom” [Credit: INAH]

The findings are part of the INAH Archaeological Salvage Project called “U lu’umil maaya wíiniko’ob”, which is currently being carried out in Yucatán and Quintana Roo, directed by Dr. Manuel Pérez Rivas, and in which renowned Yucatecan archaeologists participate.

The findings consist of various archaeological vessels over one thousand years old.

The archaeologist Iliana Isabel Ancona Aragón, who is part of the ceramic analysis team of said archaeological project, specified that the various recovered materials come from monuments located on the route of section 3 of the Mayan train.

Restoration of vessels

There in which more than 80 thousand fragments of recovered vessels and 42 complete pieces have been counted, which are in the process of cleaning, restoration, and analysis.

He explained that thanks to the intervention of the archaeologists in the Mayan train project, various vessels from the Early Classic (250-600 AD) and Late Classic (600-750/800) have been located, related to sites in the center and west of Yucatan, such as Izamal, Xcambó, Oxkintok, Sihó, Santa Barbara, Chunchunmil and Chan Chocholá, among others.

Source: The Yucatan Times [September 27, 2022]

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