Bearers of the Sky

These sculptures, standing with upraised arms, as if they were supporting something, are called Atlantes and were very populär from 900 to 1250 AD in Chichén Itzá. On the lintel they are supporting is an inscription that says that on 9 Muluk 7 Sak of the Maya calendar (July 26, 878 AD) "the carved lintel sculpture of Lord Jawbone's house was presented". He ruled Chichén Itzá and was the father of other well-known local leaders: K’inil Kopoi and K'ahk’upakal, who are also named in the inscription.

Atlantes (center)
2 Atlantes and lintel (left)
Chichén Itzá, Yucatán
Terminal Classic / Early Postclassic (900-1250 AD)
INAH. Museo de sitio de Chichén Itzá, Yucatán

© Photo: Haupt & Binder

The Maya - Language of Beauty

Touring exhibition of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Mexico. Information and photo tour through the presentation in Berlin, 12 April - 7 August 2016.

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