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Elyse Casillas

SPA 351
Prof. Romero
3/10/16

Cracking the Maya Code

En las selvas de Mxico del sur y Centroamrica estn los restos de la antigua
civilizacin Maya . Una de las causas principales que esta civilizacin es tan nica es, por sus
logros y creacin de jeroglficos que fueron creados durante el aislamiento de Europa y Asia. Se
han necesitado muchos aos para descifrar estas inscripciones, y an no ha sido fcil. Los Maya
se considera la primera gente alfabetizada en el nuevo mundo debido a estos glifos. Durante la
conquista espaola, la gente fue obligada a usar la escritura europea y tambin fueron obligados
a convertirse al catolicismo. Sus libros fueron quemados, la cantidad es desconocida, pero un
nmero limitado de libros sobrevivieron. La destruccin de estos libros caus al maya perder
casi toda su historia y tambin su cultura. J, Eric Thompson era un arquelogo britnico y un
traductor de epgrafe, que domin estudios de glifos mayas a partir de los aos 30 hasta los aos
60. Tatiana Proskouriakoff tambin tena una parte principal en el descifre del cdigo maya,
descubri que los glifos no eran del diablo pero de la historia, de dinastas; reyes y las reinas.
Valentinovich Knorosov era un soldado ruso que encontr un libro de los cdices, se hizo un
lingista y se dedic la mayor parte de su vida al descifre del glifos mayas . Descubri que la
escritura maya era un sistema variado que combin signos de la palabra y signos fonticos
aunque, sus creencias no fueron reconocidas aqu en el Oeste. Linda Scheele era otra persona
que tena una parte grande en el descifre del cdigo, encontr modelos en muertos y nacimientos

pero el descubrimiento principal era de un lord, que lo nombr Shield. Un cuerpo fue encontrado
en una tumba y por primera vez, permanece estaban relacionados con el glifo; lord Shield. David
Stewart, un traductor de gepgrafe, hizo el descubrimiento, que un sonido puede tener muchas
versiones diferentes, lo opuesto de los que creyeron antes; ese sonido fue representado por un
smbolo. A travs de los glifos y arte, los arquelogos averiguaron que el maya no era tan
pacfico como al principio pensaban, sacrificaban a la gente, decapitaban y luchaba. Estos glifos
tienen piezas muy importantes de la literatura, que permiti que nosotros aprendiramos sobre
las creencia verdaderas de las personas maya. Las historias en su iconografa hablan sobre sus
dioses y mitos. En el ltimo monumento anticuado, hay un glifo de una exposicin de un rey que
da su cetro a su sucesor, que da significado que es el principio de una nueva dinasta, el escribano
nunca fue terminado. Se cree que el reino ya no poda sostener una civilizacin. Como la guerra
civil ocurri, los mayas huyeron de sus ciudades, sin embargo todava es un misterio hoy la
certeza de la razn precisa que el maya se fue. Hoy, los descendientes maya tratan de unirse de
nuevo con su herencia aprendiendo la lengua y jeroglficos. Es muy triste saber que nunca los
ensearon esto debido a la supresin espaola, sin embargo en una nota positiva, comienzan a
descubrir de nuevo su historia.

In the jungles of southern Mexico and Central America there are remains of the ancient
Mayan civilization. One of the main reasons this civilization is so unique is because their
achievements and creation of hieroglyphs were created in isolation from Europe and Asia. It has

taken many years to decipher these inscriptions, and it has not been easy. The Maya are
considered the first literate people in the new world because of these glyphs. During Spanish
conquest, people were forced to use European script and they were also forced to convert to
Catholicism. Their books were burned, the amount is unknown, and a limited number of books
survived. The destruction of these books resulted in the Maya losing almost all of their history,
and also their culture. J, Eric Thompson was a British archaeologist and an epigrapher, he
dominated Mayan glyph studies from the 30s through the 60s. Tatiana Proskouriakoff also had a
major part in deciphering the Mayan code, she discovered that the glyphs were not of devil
worshipping but of history, of dynasties; kings and queens. Valentinovich Knorosov was a
Russian soldier who found a book of the codices, became a linguist and dedicated much of his
life to deciphering the Mayan glyphs. He discovered that the Maya script was a mixed system
that combined word signs and phonetic signs. His beliefs though, were not recognized here in the
west. Linda Scheele was another person who had a large part in deciphering the code, she found
patterns in deaths and births but the main discovery was of a lord, she named lord shield. A
body was found in a tomb and for the first time, remains were connected with the glyphs; lord
shield. David Stewart, an epigrapher, made the discovery that one sound can have many different
versions, opposite of what was believed before; that one sound was represented by one symbol.
Through the glyphs and art, archeologists found out that the Maya were not as peaceful as they
initially thought, they would sacrifice people, decapitate and fight. These glyphs had very
important pieces of literature, that allowed us to learn about the true beliefs of the Mayan people.
Stories in their iconography speak about their gods and myths. On the last dated monument,
there is a glyph showing a king giving his scepter to his successor, meaning it's the beginning of
a new dynasty, the the scribe was never finished. It is believed that the kingdom could no longer

sustain a civilization. As civil war took place, the Mayans fled their cities, however it is still a
mystery today regarding the definite reason that the maya left. Today, descendants of the maya
are trying to reconnect with their heritage by learning the language and hieroglyphs. It is very
sad to know that They were never taught this because of the Spanish suppression, however on a
positive note, they are beginning to rediscover their history.