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Maya “Painted Pyramid” Reveals 1st Murals of Daily Life

Calakmul or Kalakmul is a major site in my historical fiction about the Mayan Queens of Palenque. These two cities were enemies and had numerous skirmishes, several depicted in my stories. The mural shown here is one of the finest in terms of color and details of clothing.

Ancientfoods

Topic: Maya Food in Daily Life

A series of unusual Maya wall murals, complete with hieroglyphic captions, are providing archaeologists with a priceless look at day-to-day life in the empire circa A.D. 620 to 700.

Previously known Maya murals all depict the ruling elite, victories in battle, or religious themes. (Explore a map of Maya ruins.)

But exterior walls on a “painted pyramid” buried for centuries in the Mexican jungle (pictured, a corner of the pyramid undergoing excavations) have shown Maya scholars something completely different.

The murals—discovered in 2004 at the Maya site of Calakmul—depict ordinary people enjoying much more casual pursuits, according to a new, detailed description of the wall art.

“There’s really nothing like this in any of the [known] murals. These are totally unexpected,” said Maya expert Michael D. Coe, curator emeritus at Yale University’s Peabody Museum of Natural History and editor of the…

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Mists of Palenque Series

Mists of Palenque Series: Four Great Mayan Queens

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