Decipherment

A Logogram for YAH „Wound“

Among the many logographic signs which so far have escaped decipherment is a head sign which shows a V-shaped stepped design in its interior. The sign has been identified by Eric Thompson as T1078. A closer look at the sign shows that its full form includes a small attached prefix with “darkness” markings representing an obsidian tool, perhaps a knife that was used for sacrificial purposes. It is argued here that the wounded head with the knife is a logogram YA or YAH for „wound“.

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Shedding New Light on the Maya Stela from Hix Witz in Stuttgart

A Maya stela with a hieroglyphic text and a portrayal of a Maya ruler that is now in the collections of the Linden Museum in Stuttgart, Germany (inventory no. M 30751), has received scant attention from scholars to date. Our analysis concludes that the monument illustrates a previously unknown Maya king of the small polity of Hix Witz (English “Ocelot/Margay Hill”) from the early ninth century CE and most likely originates from Zapote Bobal in Petén, Guatemala, or a neighboring site.

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The Sign 576 as a Logograph for KUK, a Type of Bundle

The decipherment KUK for sign 576 that has been tested here proves productive for understanding its occurrences in Palenque (yok kuk ch’ajan ‘guardian of the tied bundle’) and for reading the name phrase of the way creature nicknamed “man in the bundle” as kuk winik, kukil winik, or kukan winik ‘bundle person’, ‘rolled-up person’, or ‘person who becomes a bundle’. This interpretation also fits well with the attestation on La Amelia Stela 2, where the captive who has been tied and wrapped up into a bundle is rolled down the stairs in the context of a ritual ballgame. In Palenque, this term also identifies a member of the royal court who was assigned with caring for the royal vesture and regalia and dressing the king or otherwise assisting him with donning his vestments.

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A New Logogram for <HUL> “to Arrive” – Implications for the Decipherment of the Month Name Cumku

Research Note 13

The focus of this report is on an element in Maya writing that has not yet been listed in any of the published sign inventories. Due to its position in the Lunar Series in the inscription on Copan Temple 11, north entrance, eastern jamb, this element must represent the logogram HUL as so-called Glyph D and can be translated as “to arrive (at a place)”.

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Abstraction through the Merger of Iconic Elements in Forming New Allographs: The Logogram 539 <WAY>

Research Note 12

One contributor to the calligraphic complexity of Classic Maya writing is the ability afforded by the script to create allographs. There are examples with multiple stages of extraction and simplification to create allographs. In order to create a unique graph, distinctive parts of the feline WAY icon are merged into the well-known allograph with its right half covered in jaguar fur, although both allographs represent the very same sign.

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A Possible Logograph XAN “Palm” in Maya Writing

Research Note 5

This epigraphic note explores the idea that Maya scribes invented and used a sign for “palm, guano” in their writing system. Epigraphic and linguistic data strongly support our hypothesis that the graph A27 renders the prototypical image of a guano or fan and denotes the generic botanical term XAN > xa’n, xaan, xan, meaning “palm”.

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The Logogram JALAM

Research Note 3

Several logographic signs in Maya hieroglyphic writing resist decipherment because they occur only in a few and semantically very limited contexts. One of these idiosyncratic logograms is the sign which is listed as T284 in the Thompson catalogue. However, in the case of this sign, a series of syllabic spellings provides a key for its unequivocal decipherment.

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