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Aztec Food & Agriculture
Article by Mark Cartwright

Aztec Food & Agriculture

The Aztec civilization, which flourished in central Mexico between c. 1345 and 1521 CE, was able to provide, through a combination of climatic advantages, diverse artificial irrigation methods, and extensive farming know-how, an astonishingly...
Interview: Costa Rica's Jade Museum
Article by James Blake Wiener

Interview: Costa Rica's Jade Museum

The Jade Museum (Spanish: Museo del Jade y de la Cultura Precolombina) in San José, Costa Rica houses the world’s largest collection of ancient jade from the Americas. With nearly 7,000 pieces in its collection, the artifacts...
The Classic Maya Collapse
Article by Mark Cartwright

The Classic Maya Collapse

The Terminal Classic period in Mesoamerica between c. 800 and 925 CE saw one of the most dramatic civilization collapses in history. Within a century or so the flourishing Classic Maya civilization fell into a permanent decline, so that once...
Maya Food & Agriculture
Article by Mark Cartwright

Maya Food & Agriculture

For the Maya, reliable food production was so important to their well-being that they closely linked the agricultural cycle to astronomy and religion. Important rituals and ceremonies were held in honour of specialised workers...
Early Explorers of the Maya Civilization: John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood
Article by Joshua J. Mark

Early Explorers of the Maya Civilization: John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood

The names of John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood are forever linked to the Maya and Mayan studies as the two great explorers who documented the ruins from Copan in the south to Chichen Itza in the north. The stories told by Stephens...
Olmec Colossal Stone Heads
Article by Mark Cartwright

Olmec Colossal Stone Heads

The stone head sculptures of the Olmec civilization of the Gulf Coast of Mexico (1200 BCE - 400 BCE) are amongst the most mysterious and debated artefacts from the ancient world. The most agreed upon theory is that, because of their unique...
Interview: Preclassic Maya
Article by James Blake Wiener

Interview: Preclassic Maya

The genesis of Maya civilization in Mesoamerica was marked by an effervescence in the arts, the beginnings of their written language with glyphs, and a great attention to detail in the sphere of urban planning. Yet, despite these tremendous...
How to Read a Maya Glyph
Article by Lily Ball

How to Read a Maya Glyph

For over three centuries, the ancient Maya flourished in Mesoamerica.  They built giant stone pyramids surrounded by dense jungle, used a calendrical system that made many believe that 2012 would be the end of the world, and created...
The Megalithic Funerary Art of San Agustín
Article by Benjamin Oswald

The Megalithic Funerary Art of San Agustín

Beginning approximately 2000 years ago, in a rugged stretch of southwestern Colombia where the Andes split into multiple ranges and the mighty Magdalena River is born, a people created a collection of magnificent ritual and burial monuments...
The Maya Calendar and the End of the World: Why the one does not substantiate the other
Article by Joshua J. Mark

The Maya Calendar and the End of the World: Why the one does not substantiate the other

The Popol Vuh recounts the story of twins who journeyed to Xibalba. For the Maya, their round of adventures serves as a metaphor for timeless, repeating cycles and for the regeneration of earth and all living things. – Gene S...