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Kettunen & Helmke 2011

Maya Hieroglyphs

TABLE OF CONTENTS:
FOREWORD ............................................................................................................................................ ........................ 6
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ...................................................................................................................................................

6

NOTE ON THE ORTHOGRAPHY............................................................................................................................. .........

7

I INTRODUCTION.............................................................................................................................................. ............. 8
1. History of Decipherment .................................................................................................................................. 9
2. Origins of the Maya Script .................................................................................................. ........................... 12
3. Language(s) of the Hieroglyphs .................................................................................................................... 13
II THE WRITING SYSTEM............................................................................................................................. ................ 14
4. Conventions of Transliterating and Transcribing Maya Texts .................................................................. 14
5. Reading Order.................................................................................................................................................. 16
6. Compound Glyphs, Infixing, and Conflations .................................................................................. .......... 17
7. Logograms ........................................................................................................................................................ 18
8. Syllables (Syllabograms) .................................................................................................... ............................. 19
9. Phonetic Complements................................................................................................................................... 19
10. Semantic Determinatives and Diacritical Signs ......................................................................................... 20
11. Polyvalence: Polyphony and Homophony ........................................................................................ ........ 20
12. Number of Known Hieroglyphs ................................................................................................................. 22
III GRAMMAR............................................................................................................................. ................................. 24
13. Word Order .................................................................................................................. .................................. 24
14. Verbs ............................................................................................................................................................... 26
15. Nouns and Adjectives......................................................................................................... .......................... 26
16. Pronominal System ....................................................................................................................................... 27
IV TYPICAL STRUCTURE AND CONTENT OF THE TEXTS ............................................................................................
30
17. Monumental Inscriptions ............................................................................................................................. 30
18. Ceramics .................................................................................................................................................. ....... 30
19. Codices ........................................................................................................... ................................................. 37
20. Portable Artefacts .......................................................................................................... ................................ 39
APPENDICES ...................................................................................................................................................... .......... 40
Appendix A: Assorted Texts ......................................................................................... ......................................... 40
Appendix B: Titles .......................................................................................................... .......................................... 44
Appendix C: Relationship Glyphs ......................................................................................................................... 44
Appendix D: Classic Maya Emblem Glyphs ...................................................................................... .................. 45
Appendix E: Note on the Calendar........................................................................................................................ 47
Mathematics .......................................................................................................................................................... 47
Tzolk’in and Haab ................................................................................................................ ................................ 49
Calendar Round ................................................................................................................... ................................. 49
Long Count ............................................................................................................................................................ 49
Initial Series .............................................................................................................. ............................................. 50
Supplementary Series .......................................................................................................... ................................ 50
Distance Numbers ................................................................................................................................................ 50
Possible Haab Coefficients for the Tzolk’in Day Names ................................................................................ 51
“Lords of the Night” (Cycle of 9 Days) ............................................................................................................. 51
An Example of the Correlation of the Long Count, Tzolk’in, Haab, and the Lords of the Night ............. 52
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