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Thread: Mayan Temples

  1. #17
    Your one and only pest! Ant's Avatar
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    I think it was the Aztec calendar your thinking of. It was more accurate then ours, it even factored in the 1/4 day every year.

  2. #18
    Doing it wrong until I do it right. xvart's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ktulu View Post
    Ok so it is classic, I am not a Mesoamericanist so I wasnt sure, but 700 A.D. is toward the end of the Maya classic period.

    As for its unimpressive nature the problem is the inside where all the murals and such are is the part of temples that are usually the most beautiful. Also these would have likely been plastered and painted plus pieces of obsidian decoration etc. that would have made them much more impressive in their prime. 1300 years of rain and plant growth have taken their toll on the structure and removed much of the color and part of the beauty.
    Quote Originally Posted by swords View Post
    Ktulu, I thought the Mayan only did iconic statuary carvings, those squared figures in boxes ("glyphs"?) and the calendars as decoration. I didn't know they ever did any murals or paintings of any kind. Are any of their murals still existing and viewable online somewhere? I'd love to see the style!
    Very true. In fact, this area was still being dug up. There were several very large "bumps" of earth where more temples are waiting to be unearthed and excavated. Here is the an overview of the area. I forgot I took a picture of this. Number three on the picture is the first temple in my original post. The buildings that aren't numbered are still overgrown with plant life, dirt, and rocks; therefore un-excavated. The large box around seven, eight, nine, and ten is the thirty some large stairs that we had to walk up. Most of the surrounding wall (where it wasn't stairs) was still earthed over. Some of the temples at the top were for specific reasons: number nine was believed to be dedicated to astronomy, in which only the astronomy family would be allowed to use and climb. You'll see the other temples up there when I put together the panoramic and post it.



    They also talked about how when these temples were in use a large part of them were covered in a red dye. Our guide showed us an artists' rendition of what it might have looked like in 700 AD and it was something else. I didn't know that the Maya painted their temples, but it certainly was inspiring.

    Quote Originally Posted by swords View Post
    I never saw that movie you guys are talking about but they sure chose an odd source material!? What was the reason for using that and not archaeological research?
    Probably because it was made my Mel Gibson.

    Quote Originally Posted by carnivoure12 View Post
    Xvart are buying more plants?
    Huh?

    xvart.
    "The tragedy of life is not that every man loses; but that he almost wins."

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  3. #19
    Doing it wrong until I do it right. xvart's Avatar
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    Here is the panoramic picture I just put together. I guess when I upload it to PhotoBucket it makes it really small, so I don't know how to make it bigger with good quality. Anyone have any suggestions?

    Regardless, you can see the small temple dedicated for astronomy on the very left of the picture. The bigger pictures is below the panoramic.



    http://s138.photobucket.com/albums/q...yaPanorama.jpg



    xvart.
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  4. #20

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    Swords Bonampak is a site that had quite a few murals that are up on the web if I remember correctly. Famsi.org is a good place for anyone who is interested in Mesoamerican archaeology as it has quite a few academic articles and I think it has murals and such somewhere, I know it has roll outs of many of the Maya ceramic vessels. Again I do not work in Mesoamerica this is just what I have learned from going to a school dominated by Mayanist and Olmecian archaeologists. The statues and the glyphs are important, in fact deciphering the glyphs is how we have learned much of the Maya history, though its restricted to essentially wars and successions for the most part because that is what the carved in stone and wasnt destroyed by the Spanish. The vessels have some really cool imagery on them too, especially of auto-sacrifice and vision serpents and the likes.

    Ant, the Aztec calendar was essentially a rip off of the Maya calendar, which was the first to include the 1/4 day per year and is extremely accurate. The Maya were excellent astronomers and mathematicians hence their extremely accurate calender. I dont believe the Aztecs made any improvements, I think they were too busy busting heads to worry about a new calender.
    "We're terrible animals. I think that the Earth's immune system is trying to get rid of us, as well it should." - Kurt Vonnegut

  5. #21
    Hello, I must be going... Not a Number's Avatar
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    Wow, I'm a shark for this stuff. I visited Chitzen Itza in Yucatan during the mid-80's. That was an experience, especially going into one of the underground passages.
    Grand Hotel... always the same. People come, people go. Nothing ever happens.

  6. #22
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    That's awesome. It reminds me of that movie The Ruins.
    The following statement is true.
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    My growing growlist of growing things

  7. #23
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    My uncle intends to buy land in Belize and move there in the next year or so (has a real estate agent and is down there looking at land until March). Perhaps I'll get to see some of the ruins if I ever go for a visit. He's shown me pics of some neat sites from earlier trips but it seemed there was lots of people there. I'd prefer an empty space like in Xvarts shots. The panoramic image came out cool!

    This topic is rekindling my desire to sculpt a Mushroom Stone or two and a Xochipilli statue (even though he's Aztec). I love the Mayan / Aztec sculptural art for it's distinctiveness. I always thought of their style as "pixelated" even though the term is completely inappropriate seeing as they had no inkling of computer imaging. It just seems to have this blocky, low resolution feel to it.

    Ktulu, did your professors have anything to say about the theories of some of the glyphs showing "advanced technologies", "space-time travel" and fantasies like that? I see so many of these new agey speculations, even on "documentaries" but I've been wondering what is the consensus from the universities on that. Are those type of glyphs related to the vegetable rites (carved "visions") or are they simply wishful misinterpretations of standard war glyphs? Similar to sci-fi speculations like the "Egyptian light bulb".

  8. #24

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    Hahaha, I have to laugh at all the "advanced technology" theories, though I get alot of aliens down in Nasca where I work too. One of the most common "advanced technology" pieces of evidence is the sarcophagus cover of Pacal II or the Great Pacal. It has been argued by Van Daniken that is shows him working the controls to a space craft while lying on his bad, however, anyone somewhat familiar with Maya iconography will see clearly Pacal II is being protrayed as the Axis Mundi or the world tree. That is just one example of how for the most part these "advanced tech" arguments are just wishful thinking on the part of people with a good imagination and they are not accepted in the academic field at all. Now dont think I am trying to portray these people as primitive or not "advanced" as mathematically and astronomically they were hundreds of years ahead of the Old World at this time, with the exception maybe of China. The Maya were probably the most "advanced" civilization in the world at the height of the Classic period.
    "We're terrible animals. I think that the Earth's immune system is trying to get rid of us, as well it should." - Kurt Vonnegut

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