Timeline Maya

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  Cholan was the Mayan language spoken in Copan. Pop, Zip and Zotz were month names in the Mayan calendar.
 (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.29)(SFEC, 4/6/97, Z1 p.5)
  Ik'al was a Pre-Columbian cave-dwelling earth deity. Chak [Chauk] was the Classic period water god.
 (AM, 7/97, p.50)

3309BC    Mar 10, A primordial Maya god, named GI by scholars, began his mythical reign.
    (AM, Jul-Aug/99, p.16)

3000BCE    Maize and other crops were introduced in the lowlands of what is now northern Belize.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.A)

2000BC-1000BC    Early preclassic period of the Maya.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

c1500BCE    The Mayans began to process rubber using latex from rubber trees mixed with juice from the morning glory vine. The rubber was used to make a bouncy ball for their ball games.
    (SFC, 6/19/99, p.A9)
c1500BCE    A court to play ulama was built about this time in Chiapas, Mexico. Olmecs used latex balls for the game.
    (Econ, 4/24/04, p.81)

1200BCE    The Chau Hiix Maya site in Belize was occupied from about this time. Occupation continued to after the Spanish conquest.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

1200-400BCE    The Olmecs dominated the coastal civilization of what later became Mexico.
    (SFC, 9/14/00, p.C8)

1000BC-300BC    Middle preclassic period of the Maya. The El Mirador and Nakbe sites in Guatemala were among the greatest centers of the middle to late classic Maya world. Pyramids up to 230 feet survive.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B,E)

900BCE    The site named Blackman Eddy in Belize was occupied from this time to about 1000AD.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

850        The Chicanna temple in the Mayan city of Calakmul was built about this time.
    (SSFC, 4/25/10, p.M1)

800-900    The Mayan site of Xultun (Guatemala) dated to about this time. It was discovered in 1912. In 2010 paintings were discovered at the site dating to this period. Figures were captioned as "Older Brother Obsidian," or "Senior Obsidian," and "Younger Brother Obsidian," or perhaps "Junior Obsidian."
    (www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-18018343)

c800BCE-200CE     The Mayan city of Takalik Abaj, in later day Guatemala, served as one of the most important economic and cultural centers of pre-Columbian times.
    (NG, May, 04, p.70)

c600BC    From about this time the Maya gradually sculpted the land to channel water to a growing population.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.A)
c600BC    Analysis of pottery from this time indicated that Mayans made cocoa drinks as early as this time.
    (SFC, 7/22/02, p.A4)

c500BC    The El Pilar site in Belize was founded about this time.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.D)

500-300BC    Cival, about 25 miles east of the much better known city of Tikal, was discovered in 1984. It was abandoned about 100 CE. Artifacts at the site dated to this time.
    (LAT, 5/5/04)

c300BC    The painted Loltun cave in the Yucatan date to the Late Preclassic.
    (AM, 7/97, p.52)

300BC-250    Late preclassic period of the Maya.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

250BC-150BC        The Mayan site at El Mirador flourished during this period. In the 1980s archeologist Richard Hansen found Mayan carvings at El Mirador, Guatemala, that were sculpted well before Christ.
    (WSJ, 11/12/05, p.A1)(www.mostlymaya.com/el_mirador.html)

c150BCE    Cival was a large and sophisticated Mayan city of some 10,000 people.
    (USAT, 5/11/04, p.7D)

100-0BCE    The painted cave of Naj Tunich in the Peten of Guatemala began attracting pilgrims.
    (AM, 7/97, p.52)

100BCE-100CE    The Mayan site of Palenque was settled by farmers over this period.
    (SSFC, 12/7/03, p.C10)

~0CE        The Mayan city of La Milpa was founded.
    (SFC, 6/23/96, p.A10)

c200-400     Sealed royal tombs were found in 2 pyramids at the Yaxuna site in Mexico.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.H)

250-600    Early Classic period of the Maya.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

250-900    The classic period of Maya culture.
    (SFC, 6/23/96, p.A10)

300        The city of Cancuen was already established by this time. Ruins of the city were discovered in 1999 in Guatemala.
    (SFC, 9/9/00, p.A2)
300        Mayans began building on Cozumel Island off Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula about this time. The town of San Gervasio was built and inhabited through 1650. Cozumel covers 189 square miles, about the size of Lake Tahoe.
    (SSFC, 9/25/05, E4)

300-400    By the 4th century El Mirador, the most powerful city in the Preclassic Maya world, had become a ghost town.
    (Arch, 9/00, p.28)

378        Tikal saw the establishment of a new line of kings following its military victory over many cities of the Maya Lowlands. The 1st king was Nuun Yax Ain (Green Crocodile) and he claimed descent from a Teotihuacan lord that scholars later dubbed Spear-thrower Owl.
    (Arch, 9/00, p.27)

400-500    A tomb in 1996 was found in the ruins of the Maya city of La Milpa in Belize near the Mexican border. It contained the skeleton of a man adorned with a pendant depicting the head of a vulture, signifying lord or ruler. Archeologist Norman Hammond speculated that it could be the burial place of the king known as Bird Jaguar, who lived around 450, or his successor.
    (SFC, 6/23/96, p.A10)

400-500    Yax K’uk Mo (Blue-Green Quetzal Macaw) was the 5th century founder of Copan, although the site was occupied from early preclassic to late classic times.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.F)

406        Some of the inscriptions from a stone monument from La Milpa have been deciphered to give this date.
    (SFC, 6/23/96, p.A10)

426        Yax K’uk Mo’ founded Copan in this year.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.A)

431        A great Mayan dynasty arose at Palenque and soon began trading with communities hundreds of miles away.
    (SSFC, 12/7/03, p.C10)

435-808    Yaxchilan in Mexico on the bank of the Usumacinta was occupied at least over this period. King Mah K’ina Skull III was one of the rulers during the construction of some 90 stone structures.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.G)

c435-950    The Mayan city of Copan flourished in what is now Honduras.
    (SFC, 9/30/97, p.A13)

437        Nov 30, A glyph in Copan records this date and mentions the 1st and 2nd rulers of the city-state.
    (NG, 12/97, p.81)

440-790    Palenque flourished.
    (AM, 5/01, p.49)

500-600    El Pital, a regional hub on the gulf coast since c300 BCE, suddenly became inactive. It was later suspected that a catastrophic flood hit the area.
    (SFC, 9/14/00, p.C8)

553-578    Moon-Jaguar, the tenth Mayan ruler of Copan, reigned over this period.
    (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.28)   

562        Tikal in Guatemala was conquered possibly by the Mayans of Calakmul city in Mexico. Calakmul is one of the largest of Mayan cities with more than 6,000 structures. It was the capital of a widespread hegemony of Lowland Maya kingdoms during the Late Classic (600-900).
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.G)(Arch, 9/00, p.27)
562CE        Mayans from the city of Ah Witz Na, in what is now Belize, conquered Tikal.
    (SFEC, 6/1/97, p.T3)

573        In Copan the Rosalila structure on the Acropolis culminated a period of intense construction
    (NG, 12/97, p.92)

c600CE    The Joya de Ceren site in El Salvador was buried beneath 16 feet of ash from nearby Loma Caldera.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.D)

600-700    The Caracol Maya site in Belize was one of the most prosperous cities in the Pre-Columbian world with some 120,000 people in a 65-square-mile metropolis. It has the 140-foot-high platform Caana, or “Sky-Place. “
    (SFC, 4/26/97, p.E4)
600-700    Lady K'abel, considered the greatest ruler of the Mayan Late Classic period, ruled with her husband, K'inich Bahlam, for at least 20 years in the 7th century. She was the military governor of the Waka kingdom for her family, the imperial house of the Snake King, and she carried the title "Kaloomte" — translated as "Supreme Warrior," higher in authority than her husband, the king. In 2012 her tomb was discovered in northern Guatemala.
    (AP, 10/4/12)

c600-850    Late Classic Mayan paintings were found in 1946 at a site in eastern Chiapas, Mexico, named “Bonampak," (painted walls).
    (AM, May/Jun 97 p.35)

600-900CE    Late Classic period of the Maya. The San Andres site in El Salvador flourished during the late classic.  The El Tajin civilization thrived on the central coast of what became Mexico.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.BC)(SFC, 9/14/00, p.C8)

600-900    A three hundred year dynasty ruled over Palenque.  In the Pyramid of Inscriptions is the tomb of Pakal, the greatest king of the dynasty.
    (SFC, 5/19/96, T-9)

615        Pakal (12) became the Mayan ruler of Palenque. His reign ended with his death in 683.
    (SSFC, 12/7/03, p.C10)(WSJ, 9/16/04, p.D12)

c650        An early Mayan classic temple in Copan, Honduras, was closed and covered about this time. Ritual items of flint knives and stingray spines were later discovered.
    (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.28)

683        Pacal, Mayan ruler of Palenque, died. His sarcophagus, found in 1952, has the intricately carved lid later suggested to represent an extra-terrestrial visitor.
    (SSFC, 5/5/02, p.C5)(WSJ, 9/16/04, p.A1)

684-702    Mayan leader Kan Balam II, son of Pakal, ruled over Palenque.
    (SSFC, 12/7/03, p.C10)

688-714    The Maya of Tonina and Palenque fought several battles over watershed areas in the region that fed the Usumacinta river, which now marks the boundary between Mexico and Guatemala.
    (AP, 7/7/11)

692        Oct 2, A Mayan prisoner from Copan, depicted in a well-preserved stone sculpture found in 2011, was captured on this day.
    (AP, 7/8/11)

696        Jun 27, A Mayan ballcourt at Tonina was dedicated and sculptures, found in 2011, were created to commemorate the dedication.
    (AP, 7/8/11)

700-800    The Bonampak site in Chiapas, Mexico, has frescoes painted on the stucco walls of Structure I from this time. They depict war, sacrifice and celebration. The name glyph for Shield Jaguar II, king of nearby Yaxchilan, was recognized.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.F)(AM, May/Jun 97 p.37)

721-764    Kinich Ahkal Mo' Nab ruled Palenque.
    (AM, Jul-Aug/99, p.16)

738CE        Butz Tiliw’ or Cauac Sky defeated his overlord, Copan’s 13th ruler, 18 Rabbit. Monuments to this event are at the Quirigua Maya site in Guatemala.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.F)

738CE        The great Lord 18 Rabbit built a ball court at the Mayan city of Copan. In a surprise attack he was captured and decapitated by Cauac Sky from the city of Quirigia, some 60 km. to the east.
     (Hem, Dec. 94, p.123)

740        Tah ak Chaan (Taj Chan Ank) began a 50 year rule over the city of Cancuen in what later became Guatemala.
    (SFC, 9/9/00, p.A2)(AM, 7/04, p.16)

744        Lords of the Lowland Maya city of Caracol conducted a burning ritual in the cave at Naj Tunich, in the Peten of Guatemala.
    (AM, 7/97, p.51)

746        June 12, The estimated date for the dedication of the Mayan Temple 22 in Copan.
    (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.31)

c750-850    The city of La Milpa reached its peak with about 50,000 people.
    (SFC, 6/23/96, p.A10)

763        Altar Q depicts Yax Pasah (Yax Pasaj), Copan’s last dynastic ruler, receiving the symbolic baton of office from founder K’inich Yax K’uk’ Mo’ in this year.
    (NG, 12/97, p.80)(AM, 3/04, p.43)

776-795    Chan Muan (Sky Screech Owl) reigned over the Bonampak site in what is now eastern Chiapas, Mexico. The site was abandoned at the end of his reign.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 p.35)

795        Taj Chan Ahk, the Mayan ruler of Cancuen (Guatemala), died.
    (SFC, 11/17/05, p.A17)

796        A 600-pound limestone altar was carved to honor a treaty in the Mayan city of Cancuen (Guatemala). It was uncovered in 2001 and soon stolen. It was retrieved in 2003.
    (USAT, 10/30/03, p.12D)(SFC, 10/30/03, p.A11)

800        About this time unidentified conquerors destroyed the Mayan palace at Cancuen (Guatemala) and killed the members of the court. Archeologists in 2005 reported that King Maax, son of Taj Chan Ahk, was found buried in full regalia.
    (SFC, 11/17/05, p.A17)
c800        The height of the Mayan city of Copan. Some 20,000 people lived in the Copan pocket, a fertile section of the Copan River valley in what is now Honduras.
    (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.29)

c820        The collapse of the Mayan ruling Classic period dynasty in Copan. Post classic people removed sculpture from the tomb of the last ruler, Yax Pasah (New Dawn).
    (Nat. Hist., 4/96, p.25)   

c875-925    Lord Chaak ruled over Uxmal in Mexico.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.H)

c900        The Mayan city-state of Palenque was abandoned
    (SFC, 5/19/96, T-10)

c900        The Mayan city-state of Copan was abandoned
    (NG, 12/97, p.80)

900-1000    The terminal classic period of the Maya. Chichen Itza destroyed the Yaxuna site, 12 miles to the south during the terminal classic.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B,H)

1000-1250    Early post classic period of the Maya.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

1200-1330    A Mayan city in Peten state (Guatemala), the “El Pajaral" site, dated to the post-classic period of this time. The ruins were found in 2000.
    (SFC, 5/15/00, p.A13)

1250-1540    Late post classic period of the Maya.
    (AM, May/Jun 97 suppl. p.B)

1519        Francisco de Montejo, a captain under Cortez, set about subjugating the Maya in Mexico.
    (SSFC, 5/6/01, p.T6)

1542        Merida was founded by Francisco de Montejo at the holy Maya city of T’Ho. Montejo was the son of the captain under Cortez with the same name.
    (SSFC, 5/6/01, p.T6)

1533        Spaniards arrived at Zaci, the capital of the Cupul Maya, in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula and were pushed out.
    (SSFC, 6/29/08, p.E5)(http://tinyurl.com/4o62ox)

1546        A coalition of eastern Maya laid siege to Valladolid, in Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula. Spanish conquistadores brutally crushed a major Mayan rebellion in New Spain.
    (http://tinyurl.com/4o62ox)(TL-MB, 1988, p.17)

1561        A great hurricane ravaged Mexico’s Yucatan peninsula.
    (AM, 7/05, p.49)

1562        Aug 8, Diego Te, a Maya man in the Yucatec town of Sotuta, testified that a year earlier he had witnessed a village leader and another man cut the hearts from 2 boys and hand them to a shaman, who rubbed the hearts onto the mouths of two Maya idols. The account was preserved in the Archivo General de Indias in Seville, Spain.
    (AM, 7/05, p.43)

1562        A Spanish priest wrote that the well at Chichen Itza was a place where Mayas had made offerings to their gods.
    (ON, 5/02, p.6)

1562        In the Yucatan a campaign to root out idolatry ended with the destruction of thousands of ritual objects and most of the Maya books in existence. The campaign was led by Franciscan leader Diego de Landa, who was later tried in Spain for his excessive behavior and acquitted. He recorded the oral traditions of the Maya in “An Account of the Things of the Yucatan" before returning there in 1573 as Bishop of Yucatan.
    (AM, 7/05, p.44)

1784        The 1st Spanish military officer who explored the Mayan ruins of Palenque thought it was Atlantis risen.
    (SSFC, 12/7/03, p.C10)

1839        John Lloyd Stephens and Frederick Catherwood explored Copan. John L. Stephens attempted to purchase the Mayan city of Copan in Honduras.
    (RFH-MDHP, p.217)(NG, 12/97, p.80)

1847-1901    The Caste War of Yucatan extended over this period. it began with the revolt of the native Maya people against the population of European descent (called Yucatecos) in political and economic control.
    (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Caste_War_of_Yucat%C3%A1n)

1875        Oct 12, Mayan Indians attacked the Xuxub sugar plantation in the Yucatan and dozens of workers were killed or taken captive. Bernadino Cen, the Mayan leader, was killed when the Mexican National Guard arrived the next day. In 2004 Paul Sullivan authored “Xuxub Must Die."
    (WSJ, 5/13/04, p.D10)

1894        Edward Herbert Thompson, American consul, purchased land in the Yucatan that contained the ruins of the Mayan city of Chichen Itza.
    (ON, 5/02, p.6)

1904-1909    Edward Herbert Thompson led dredging operations at the sacred well of Chichen Itza.
    (ON, 5/02, p.7)

1952        The sarcophagus of Lord Pakal was found in the ruins at Palenque by Alberto Ruz L’Huiller.
    (SSFC, 5/5/02, p.C5)

1977        Prof. Gordon Willey (1913-2002) authored “The Origins of Maya Civilization."
    (SFC, 5/2/02, p.A27)

1981        In Guatemala 100,000 Maya villagers were killed in a government crackdown on a left-wing insurgency.
    (SFC, 5/19/96, T-11)

1984        In Guatemala Cival, about 25 miles east of the much better known city of Tikal, was discovered. Cival was abandoned about 100 CE. Artifacts at the site dated from 500-300 BCE.
    (LAT, 5/5/04)

1992        Michael D. Coe wrote “Breaking the Maya Code."
    (NH, 4/97, p.20)

1994        Jan, Poor Maya farmers staged an uprising at the Lancandon rain forest near Palenque, Mexico.
    (SFC, 5/19/96, T-9)

1994        In Chiapas, Mexico, Maya farmers organized into the Zapatista National Liberation Army.
    (SFC, 5/19/96, T-10)

1995        Archeologists of the Basic Pete Oil Co. discovered the Mayan city of La Joyanca.
    (WSJ, 12/26/96, p.32)

1997        “The Maya Textile Tradition" was edited by Margot Blum Schlevill with photographs by Jeffrey Jay Foxx. The Mayan history, ecology and culture is viewed through their textile tradition.
    (NH, 9/97, p.16)

1997        A large Mayan site was discovered at the Rio San Pedro Martir drainage in the Peten region of northern Guatemala.
    (AM, Jul/Aug ‘97 p.19)

1998         Michael D. Coe and Justin Kerr published “The Art of the Maya Scribe," a look at the progress made in decoding the Mayan writing system.
     (Hem, Dec. 94, p.123)(SFEC, 7/5/98, BR p.10)

1999        Ruins of the city of Cancuen was were discovered in Guatemala.
    (SFC, 9/9/00, p.A2)

2005        Mar 31, A UNESCO team arrived in Guatemala to push forward the candidature process  of El Mirador archaeological site as a World Heritage Site. In the spring Pres. Oscar Berger repealed a 2002 decree by Pres. Alfonso Portillo declaring the Mayan site of El Mirador a protected area.
    (WSJ, 11/12/05, p.A5)(http://tinyurl.com/beeku)

2012        Dec 21, Dawn broke over ancient holy sites in southern Mexico to celebrations, ushering in the start of a new era for the Maya people that had been billed as a possible end of the world.
    (Reuters, 12/21/12)

2013        May 13, Belize authorities said a construction company has essentially destroyed the Nohmul complex, one of the country’s largest Mayan pyramids, with backhoes and bulldozers to extract crushed rock for a road-building project. The ceremonial center dated back at least 2,300 years.
    (AP, 5/14/13)

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