This hieroglyph is the earliest understood record of the Maya calendar

Buried within the Las Pinturas pyramid in San Bartolo, Guatemala, thousands of painted plaster mural pieces deal a window into ancient Maya civilization. Two of those pieces kind the earliest understood record of a Maya calendar, developed inbetween 300 and 200 B.C.

The pieces illustrate the date of “7 Deer” from the 260-day spiritual calendar typical throughout ancient Mesoamerica and still utilized today by native neighborhoods in Guatemala and southern Mexico, archaeologist David Stuart and coworkers report April 13 in Science Advances. The calendar system’s durability testifies to the perseverance of Maya intellectual culture, states Stuart, of the University of Texas at Austin.

From 400 B.C. to 100 A.D., Mayas takendown and rebuilt the pyramid 7 times, producing a series of discrete time pills stacked on top of each other, states researchstudy coauthor Heather Hurst, task director of the San Bartolo-Xultun Regional Archaeological Project. By radiocarbon dating both the product in the layer where the calendar pieces were discovered and the product utilized to bury that layer, scientists figuredout a narrow time window in which the 7 Deer day record would haveactually been produced.

illustration of the 7 Deer signcta module

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Source: This hieroglyph is the earliest understood record of the Maya calendar.

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