At the edge of the world: Caves and Late Classic Maya world - download pdf or read online

By Karen Bassie-Sweet

ISBN-10: 0806128291

ISBN-13: 9780806128290

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In the Popol Vuh the deities prepared the earth for hmnans by cieating the cycles of sim, moon,and stars (Tfedlock 1985). These cycles are lepresented by the epic adventuies of the ancestral couple's chüdren (Hun Hunahpu/sun and Vucub HunahpuAfenus)and grandchüdien(Hunahpu/sim and Xbalenque/full moon). This suggests that the fourfold siding/fourfold comering that also prepared the surface of the earth for humans was related to these astronomical events. ^ The Solar Basis of the Quadrilateral Model From a visual perspective, the observer is at the center of the world.

The east and west sides of the quadrilateral space represented,in effect, the anmial path of the sun. The north and south sides of the square represented the path of the solstice sun both above and below the earth 30 AT THE EDGE OF THE WORLD l Figure 3. Uaxactun Group E (after Sylvanus Morley) superimposed on the surface of the world. Thus these ritual circuits symbolically duplicated the annual path of the sun, creating safe human space. The Tikal twin pyramid complexes are replications of the quadrilateral world (fig.

The Milky W^ also intersects ihe terrestdal crossroads on the solstices. At sunnse on the summer solstice and simset on the winter solstice, the Müky Way arches across the sky from the northeast comer to the south west comer. 2'' It is likely that the Maya used the movements in the night sky to order their world in the same manner that they used the day sim. ^® In these contexts the bicephalic monster has been assumed to represent the are of the sky. The front head is usually infixed with Venus signs or crossed hands and has deer hooves or ears (fig.

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At the edge of the world: Caves and Late Classic Maya world view by Karen Bassie-Sweet


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