Space Matters: The Maya Articulation of Myth and Cosmology as Represented in the Spatial Elements of Building Construction and City Planning: The Example of the Ball Court Sector of Late Classic La Sierra

Garrett W. Silliman, The College of Wooster


Reconstructing the ideologies of past societies is the goal of much archaeological research. The inherent difficultly of this task, as in all areas of archaeology, is ever-present with the reliance upon fragmentary evidence. In the case of southeastern Mesoamerica, archaeology has been blessed by the continued decipherment of glyphic inscriptions. This area of study has grealty benefited our understanding of notions pertaining to Mesoamerican myth and cosmology, there are several aspects of this world-view, however, which remain in obscurity. The aim of this study is to look into one such 'obscured' area of Maya religion/archaeology, the expression of Maya world-view as seen in building construction and sector planning. The initial field research, composing the excavational data employed inthis stidy, was conducted during the 1995 field season of teh Naco Valley Archaeological Project. It is the intention of this study attempts to bring the ritual avtivity pyrsued by the elity rling clss of teh La Sierra polity out of misunderstood obscurity, and demonstrate, through the analysis of spatial elements used in construction and sector planning, that eh elity of La Sietta had a sharpened understanding of Maya mythological and cosmological systems.


© Copyright 1996 Garrett W. Silliman