From its ancient caves to its stunning temple sites, the nation of Belize offers plenty of glimpses into the lives of the Maya people who once ruled the area. Now, however, a hieroglyphic vase has begun to reveal even more information about this storied civilization.
Originally discovered in the Cayo District of Belize by Julie Hoggarth, Ph.D., an American archaeologist, this historic artifact most likely served as a royal drinking vessel. This is perhaps not surprising given that it was found close to the entrance to the Royal Palace - an area where commoners were not allowed to wander.
Indeed, royalty and regional politics are the main topics of the hieroglyphic text on this ancient nine-inch vase. Its intricate design tells stories of war, diplomacy, rituals, and familial lineage. The vessel even reveals the name of its owner - an ancient Maya king named Komkom.
Long ago, Spanish conquistadors destroyed the vast majority of the Maya people's record books and other literature. As such, stories such as those outlined on this hieroglyphic vase are vital for providing the world with a detailed account of this great civilization. Put simply, without artifacts such as the vase, their history and culture would not be as well known as it is today.
Researchers believe that we can also learn a great deal about the Maya people based on how the vase was destroyed and disposed of. They speculate that the vessel was probably destroyed during an abandonment ceremony - alongside a number of other valuable items.
During one of these abandonment ceremonies, the Maya would deliberately destroy their precious objects to release the spirits that they believed were housed within them. They would carry out this ritual when they were vacating one area before traveling to another. These facts would seem to indicate that the vase was destroyed as the Maya people prepared to flee from war or drought in the Cayo district.
If you are interested in learning more about the history of Belize and the Maya people, an in-person visit is an absolute must. During your time in the area, you can stay at Cahal Pech Village Resort. Our resort offers affordable accommodations, plenty of amenities, and easy access to attractions such as sacred caves and ancient Maya cities.
To learn more about the resort or to make a booking, visit www.CahalPech.com.