Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

8/8/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Discovery made at previously looted temple went unnoticed by thieves

Archaeologists stumbled across an enormous frieze while excavating a tunnel in the city of Hummel in the Peten region of Guatemala last month. The discovery, made late last month was ironic as the tunnel had been previously ransacked. "The looters had come close to it, but they hadn't seen it," Maya archaeologist Francisco Estrada-Bell says.

The enormous frieze, which measures 26 feet by nearly 7 feet depicts human figures in a mythological setting,

The enormous frieze, which measures 26 feet by nearly 7 feet depicts human figures in a mythological setting,

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

8/8/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Americas

Keywords: Guatemala, Maya, frieze, discovery, looting, Tikal and Kaanul


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The elaborate carving depicts the carved legs of a ruler sitting atop the head of a Maya mountain spirit. Measuring 26 feet by nearly seven feet, the carving displays human figures in a mythological setting. This suggests that these figures may be deified rulers. The carving was found in the buried foundations of a rectangular pyramid in Holmul.

The frieze is one of the best preserved examples of its kind, according to Estrada-Bell. "It's 95 percent preserved. There's only one corner that's not well preserved because it's too close to the surface, but the rest of it isn't missing any parts."

Affiliated with Tulane University, Boston University and the American Museum of Natural History, Estrada-Bell is also a National Geographic Explorer. His excavations at Holmul were supported by the National Geographic Society/Waitt Grants Program.

"We often dream of finding things this well preserved, and Francisco did it," Maya archaeologist Marcello Canuto says, calling the frieze "amazingly and beautifully preserved." Canuto is also the director of the Middle American Research Institute at Tulane University in New Orleans; he was not involved in the project.

Traces of red, blue, green, and yellow paint are still visible on the frieze in spite of its age.
"It gives you an idea of how intricate and ornate these sites that we are excavating must have been during their apogee," Canuto said. "These sites must have been a feast for the eyes when they were inhabited."

A Maya hieroglyph expert at the University of Texas at Austin, David Stuart pointed out that archaeologists think most large Maya temples were probably decorated with similar sorts of designs.

"But not all temples were so carefully buried and preserved like this," Stuart says, who did not participate in the project. "Also, each temple facade was slightly different and therefore unique in terms of its detail and message."

The section of the temple at Holmul where the frieze was found dates back to about A.D. 590. This period is aligned with the Maya classical era, a period defined by the power struggles between two major Maya dynasties: Tikal and Kaanul.

The Tikal and the Kaanul competed with one another for resources and for control of other, smaller Maya city-states. It ha been previously unclear which dynasty Holmul owed its allegiance. An inscription on the newly discovered frieze reveals that the temple was commissioned by Ajwosaj, ruler of a neighboring city-state called Naranjo, which archaeologists know from other discoveries was a vassal city of the Kaanul kingdom.

"We now know that Holmul was under the influence of the Kaanul dynasty," Canuto said.
Recent discoveries at sites like La Corona and Holmul are helping reveal how these sites, despite being relatively small compared with some of their neighbors, were important players on the region's larger geopolitical stage.

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2016
Universal:
Respect for Women: That in every country of the world, women may be honored and respected and that their essential contribution to society may be highly esteemed.
Evangelization: Holy Rosary: That families, communities, and groups may pray the Holy Rosary for evangelization and peace.



Comments


More Americas

A MIRACLE? Virgin Mary statue with single red tear sparks mass pilgrimage Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Images of a Virgin Mary statue with a single red 'tear' streaming down her face has spread rampant through social media prompting hundreds of pilgrims to visit the statue in Columbia. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The statue located in Floridablanca, Columbia is ... continue reading


Venezuela's collapse is a warning to Americans enamored with socialism Watch

Image of Socialism is a quick way to go hungry.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The world is hardly paying attention, but the nation of Venezuela is in full-collapse. Its economy has imploded, and its politics are in turmoil. The nation is beset with shortages of critical goods, and the beer supply has run out. Soldiers patrol the streets, tasked ... continue reading


EQUALITY: Sex-crazed Olympians will receive and use 350,000 male condoms and 100,000 female condoms! Watch

Image of Olympic athletes have been encouraged to practice safe sex in Rio de Janeiro (Sify).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

In a shocking move, Olympic organizers have decided to distribute 450,000 condoms to athletes participating in the Rio de Janeiro Olympics this year. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Under the ruse of "equality," the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has decided ... continue reading


Prayer and hugging banned in Colombia Watch

Image of Colombia stuns the world when it announces a prayer and hugging ban (docakilah/Wordpress).

By Walter SŠnchez Silva (CNA)

In what's been labeled an "absurd" move, a judge in Colombia has banned prayer and "fraternal hugs" at the start of Cartagena city council sessions as well as local educational institutions. Cartagena, Colombia (CNA) - The ban on civic prayer - as well as the baffling ... continue reading


Student discovers lost Mayan city, but archaeologists insist it's not there. Isn't that the point of a lost city? Watch

Image of William Gadoury, thought he discovered a lost Mayan city, but archaeologists say no.

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The story of a teen who found a lost Maya city may not be so remarkable after all, as experts studying the claim find that it doesn't hold up under scrutiny. While the teen certainly had good intentions, his lost city may be nothing more than fallow fields. LOS ... continue reading


'El Chapo' transferred - Will he escape again? Watch

Image of El Chapo has been transferred to a prison in Juarez, near the US border (Reuters).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Notorious drug lord Joaquín "El Chapo" Guzmán has been transferred from Altiplano, a maximum-security prison in Central Mexico, to a prison in Ciudad Juarez. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to CNN, a senior Mexican law enforcement source stated, "Due to ... continue reading


Cinco de Mayo - What is the day really about? Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Cinco de Mayo is upon us, and while many believe it is Mexico's Independence Day, it actually is not. So, what is Cinco de Mayo and why has it become so biculturally popular? LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - "The significance of Cinco de Mayo is that it ... continue reading


Ecuador quake survivors share powerful stories of survival Watch

Image of The quake was the worst the Andean nation had seen in ten years (Paul Ochoa/Reuters).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A 7.8 magnitude earthquake devastated sections of Ecuador and left the death count at over 300 people. Over 2,000 destroyed buildings and ruined roads have been reported - and now survivors are sharing their harrowing experiences. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - As ... continue reading


Previous Argentina President accused of money laundering Watch

Image of Former President of Argentina accused of money laundering (1meee).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

After serving her country for eight years, former Argentina President Cristina Fern√°ndez de Kirchner has been accused of laundering hundreds of millions of dollars into oversea accounts. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Former president Fern√°ndez de Kirchner has ... continue reading


Virgin Mary statue considered in notoriously secular Uruguay Watch

Image of Secular Uruguay debates whether to erect a Virgin Mary statue in a park (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Uruguay is considered a secular country and is known for its refusal to condone religious beliefs of any kind - yet there exists a debate concerning the erection of a Virgin Mary statue. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - Many in Uruguay stand on the country's ... continue reading


All Americas News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • New study reveals Catholics hold highest retention rate - but no one ...
  • St. Philip Neri: Saint of the Day for Thursday, May 26, 2016
  • Miracle for baby born without half his skull
  • REVEALED: China has an army of paid trolls, guess who else has one?
  • A Prayer Before Surgery HD Video
  • Prayer to Saint Valentine HD Video
  • Daily Readings for Thursday, May 26, 2016

Daily Readings

Reading 1, First Peter 1:18-25
18 For you know that the price of your ransom from the futile way of life ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 147:12-13, 14-15, 19-20
12 Praise Yahweh, Jerusalem, Zion, praise your God.13 For he ... Read More

Gospel, Mark 10:32-45
32 They were on the road, going up to Jerusalem; Jesus was walking on ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 25th, 2016 Image

St. Mary Magdalene de Pazzi
May 25: It would be easy to concentrate on the mystical ... Read More