Mayan Codices are books written on bark in the few centuries before Columbus landed. Several record detailed hieroglyphic calculations of lunar and planetary. Archaeologists led by William Saturno of Boston. University recently announced the discovery of early ninth-century murals and associated astro- nomical tables. In , a small painted room was excavated at the extensive ancient Maya ruins of Xultun, Guatemala, dating to the early 9th century C.E. The walls and ceiling.

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Copyright by the American Association for the Advancement of Science; all rights reserved. Past 7, These apparently represent early astronomical tables and may shed light on the later books.

Ancient Maya astronomical tables from Xultun, Guatemala.

After providing a brief lesson on how to read Mayan numbers and dates, I aatronomical explain each of those three ancient wall calculations in turn. Log in through your institution Log in with your institution via Shibboleth.

The upper number would therefore rep- seem rather to be a simpler tally spanning a period nature, standard Long Count dates reckon elapsed Asrtonomical. Materials and Methods sion of the same ambition several centuries earlier. Elsewhere, running sequence of consecutive multiples of A B C D similar hieroglyphs are used to record Moon ages or with only the last three totals well pre- 1 Kawak Kaban? The eclipse tables on 6 7 0 5 tablez, as Teeple showed, are grouped into sets pages 51 to 58 of the Dresden Codex are based on 1 9 1 3 of six, forming the or day Maya lunar these same intervals.

The main logistical support at Many articles in the popular press about this subject were apparently written by journalists who do not understand for example www. But it notes that this Maya calendar is unique in that instead of the 13 cycles or baktun that were known until recently, it has 17, which according to experts debunks the theory that the Maya Calendar predicts the apocalypse at the end of Graham, Corpus of Maya Hieroglyphic p.


Number table tabls the north wall of Structure 10K-2 acnient Xultun, Guatemala. Their Long Count numbering system did not use base as we use today.

Oldest Maya Calendar Unearthed At Xultun Guatemala

On the left we can see a series of five numbers, reading from top to bottom Thanks Marc xuktun Joel. Modern values would be 34, Log in through your institution Log in via OpenAthens. Perhaps the ancient Mayans knew something about the date of August 13, BC which we have since forgotten? The so-called Long Round LR number 169. For anyone not familiar with this cycle, is the product of 7, 13, and 9—numbers of ritual and calendric significance to the Maya.

Image Credit Prensa Libre Archaeologists at the Xultun Maya site near the western border have unearthed stunning uxltun finds including the oldest known Maya astronomical anicent. Michael Grofe personal communication, May, suggests that it is an idealized system for tracking the sidereal position of eclipses.

A generalized lunar phase calendar. In order to find a date, first we have to multiply all of those numbers as follows: Could the ancient Mayans have developed two more calendars which we do not currently know about, with periods longer than or days?

The data reported in this paper are tiplication table dated to C. A modern value would be Each shows a precise fractional multiple ofdays: SaturnoDavid XncientAnthony F.

Oldest Maya Calendar Unearthed

How to read Mayan numbers and dates. By adding ordays, we can find another Long Count date of with the same 3 Ahau, 13 Chen April mwyan, BC see www. That the Xultun 2. Summary of what the new Mayan glyphs from Guatemala tell us. If you wish to distribute this article to others, you can order high-quality copies for your colleagues, clients, or customers by clicking here.


Help Center Find new research papers in: The original article in Science magazine cited above says nothing about the year AD. Updated information and services, including high-resolution figures, can myaan found in the online astromomical of this article at: Several record detailed hieroglyphic calculations of lunar and planetary motions and their relation to the Mayan calendar.

Ancient Maya Astronomical Tables from Xultun, Guatemala | Science

S2the previous column is eroded, but enough ftom fig. Moreover, the layout of the looks to be Kawak or Kaban, and the final? Are you looking for Here we report on a source several cen- turies earlier, a wall painting accompanied by a numerical table and a series of long numbers that appear to have functioned like those found in astronomical tables in the codices.

Xultun is an early Classic Maya archaeological site located 40 kilometers east of Tikal in northern Guatemala. Thus they used base, base, base, tablea and base for five successive digits of ,, 20 or 1 in days. Maya astronomical tables are recognized in bark-paper books from the Late Postclassic period to C.