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Ancient Middle America

Spring 2019 Calendar

 map: topographic
  map: Mesoamerica and Its Cultural Areas
 Pre-Hispanic Mesoamerica

OWL logo, Online Writing Lab, Purdue University.
class slides on-line
(free PowerPoint Viewer 2010)

Ancient Middle America Course Information

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Sunday, 02-Oct-2022 03:18:58 GMT

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Copan Sculpture

Copán, Honduras

Map of Major Mayan Archaeological Sites

Map of the
Mayan World



Temple 26, Copan, Honduras.

Temple 26
Copán, Hondudras



15 min., 1985, VC 814


The Ball Court by  Tatiana Proskouriakoff.

The Ball Court
Tatiana Proskouriakoff
Copán, Hondudras
Peabody Museum
Harvard College


Copán WebPage

Abstract Terms / Concepts Notes
Cultures Sites Individuals


see also Lost King of the Maya
(Copán's Yax K'uk Mo') -- Nova
(60 min., 2001, VC 4357)


Other Maya Sites

Maya -- Wikipedia

Copán -- Wikipedia

Search Maya on JSTOR


Maya stelae of Copán

Maya stelae of
Copán, Honduras,
Frederick Catherwood, 1839

Copan Jade

Copán Jade,

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"Documents theories and procedures of the excavation of Copan, a major urban center of Mayan civilization. Presents analysis of the decline of the Mayan society and implications for the future."

Terms / Concepts / Features:

  • "stone tree"

  • "Acropolis"

  • Copán "turbans"

  • serpent bar

  • Hieroglyphic Stairway

Hieroglyphic Stairway at Copan, Honduras.

Hieroglyphic Stairway
Copan, Honduras

  • corbeled arch

  • range building

  • tzompantli

  • Copán's Emblem: The head of a leaf-nosed bat

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  • Morley and Thompson early on characterized the Maya as having two social classes, and no war. We now know this is not so

  • At Copán archaeologists excavate with tunnels. That way they have to destroy less.

  • Copán had over 20,000 inhabitants in the Late Classic

  • Linda Schele: "A ruler performed two great acts, taking captives in battle and bloodletting as ruler."

  • Copán has one of the best ball courts in all of the Mayan world. "The ball game is the fundamental metaphor of what life is all about."

  • Just like Pope Julius II commissioned Bramante, Raphael, and Michelangelo, 18 Rabbit was the patron of Copán. He ruled for 43 years, appearing in sculpture as "The First Father" The Maize God.

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  • 18 Rabbit Waxaklahun (Ubah Káwil)
  • Frederick Catherwood
  • John L. Stephens
  • Alfred Maudslay
  • Sylvanus Morley
  • Barbara Fash (art historian)
  • Bill Fash
  • Tatiana Proskouriakoff
  • Linda Schele (epigrapher)


Copan ritual.

Copán, Hondudras

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