Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Catalog of Maya Hieroglyphs & 3...

The Mayas had a complicated writing of hieroglyphs which could not be decipherd by the researchers for a long time. Until in the 20th century they believed that this writing should be a connection of figures and symbols (to represent one word or an expression). In 1952, the Russian Yuri Knorozov found out that it is a consonant-vowel-system. The Maya hieroglyphs contain a mixture of symbols and natural images. Often, there are human and animal faces and gods too. Unfortunately, in the 16th century, Diego de Landa (Spain, in this time bishop of Yucatán) burnt nearly all Maya books because he wanted to missionize the locals and for him, these books contained "only superstition and diabolical lies". It seems that only four "Maya-Kodizes" still exist. There are written e.g. astronomical informations, plant-calendars and tables which fixed the right time for rituals, but also images of gods. Hieroglyphs were not found only in the "Kodizes" but also e.g. on steles, steps, vases and walls of tombs.
Thompson, J.E.S. 1962.  
A Catalog of Maya Hieroglyphs. 
Norman, Oklahoma: 
University of Oklahoma Press.

Kurbjuhn, Kornelia. 1989.  
Maya: The Complete Catalogue of Glyph Readings. 
Kassel, Germany: Schneider & Weber.

Schele, Linda. 1989.  
Notebook for the XIIIth Maya Hieroglyphic Workshop at Texts, March 11-12, 1989. 
Austin, Texas: 
Art Department, 
University of Texas at Austin.

MacLeod, Barbara 
and Dorie Reents-Budet. 1994.  
Workbook for the Third Annual Duke-UNC Workshop on Maya Hieroglyphic Writing, 
June 24-26, 1994. Chapel Hill, North Carolina: 
The Duke-UNC Program 
in Latin American Studies.

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