Download E-books Lightning Gods and Feathered Serpents: The Public Sculpture of El Tajín (Linda Schele Series in Maya and Pre-Columbian Studies) PDF

By Rex Koontz

El Tajín, an historic Mesoamerican capital in Veracruz, Mexico, has lengthy been favourite for its gorgeous pyramids and ballcourts embellished with vast sculptural courses. but the city's singularity because the basically heart within the area with one of these wealth of sculpture and positive structure has hindered makes an attempt to put it extra firmly within the context of Mesoamerican historical past. In Lightning Gods and Feathered Serpents, Rex Koontz undertakes the 1st broad therapy of El Tajín's iconography in over thirty years, permitting us to view its imagery within the broader Mesoamerican context of emerging capitals and new elites in the course of a interval of primary ancient transformations.

Koontz makes a speciality of 3 significant architectural features—the Pyramid of the Niches/Central Plaza ensemble, the South Ballcourt, and the Mound of the development Columns complex—and investigates the meanings in their sculpture and the way those meanings could were skilled via particular audiences. Koontz reveals that the iconography of El Tajín finds a lot approximately how motifs and elite rites growing to be out of the vintage interval have been transmitted to later Mesoamerican peoples because the cultures situated on Teotihuacan and the Maya grew to become the myriad city-states of the Early Postclassic period.

By reexamining the iconography of sculptures lengthy within the checklist, in addition to introducing vital new monuments and contexts, Lightning Gods and Feathered Serpents in actual fact demonstrates El Tajín's various iconographic connections with different components of Mesoamerica, whereas additionally exploring its roots in an indigenous Gulf lowlands tradition whose outlines are just now rising. while, it starts to discover a mostly neglected nearby creative tradition of which Tajín is the crowning achievement.

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This item is proven emerging out of a platform, and the total influence isn't in contrast to the depiction at the Tajín panel, as García Payón well-known. Aveleyra extra pointed out a stone effigy of this item within the l. a. Ventilla compound at Teotihuacan (Fig. 2. 9b), and different entire stone effigies have been later pointed out, one from an nearly modern context on the Maya website of Tikal (Fialko 1988). 7 The 3rd item was once discovered halfway among those websites, on the south Gulf lowland website of Piedra Labrada (Ortíz 1990:313). it really is transparent from the archaeological contexts, including the representations, that the gadgets at Teotihuacan and Tikal represent a significant item category, and through extension, the little-known Gulf lowland instance at Piedra Labrada also needs to belong to this team. The analogy with the Nahuatl item type tlachtemalacatl, utilized by either Aveleyra de Anda and García Payón, has held up good on one point: the items are with regards to ballgames and ballcourt ritual. nonetheless, the static The Pyramid of the Niches 21 a b c F i g ur e 2 . nine . Depictions of the stick video game and ballcourt markers/standards: a, element of Tepantitla mural displaying stick online game with ballcourt marker, Teotihuacan (drawing by way of Jennifer Browder); b, los angeles Ventilla composite stela, Teotihuacan (drawing via Linda Schele, © David Schele, courtesy beginning for the development of Mesoamerican reports, Inc. , www. famsi. org); c, element of standard-raising ceremony at the south column of the constitution of the Columns, El Tajín (drawing by way of the author). caliber of the past due Postclassic tlachtemalalcatl, which used to be tenoned to the wall of the courtroom, doesn't accord good with the wide variety of contexts within which we discover the gadget through the vintage and Epiclassic sessions. those prior examples are freestanding monuments erected on a platform, as within the Teotihuacan and Tikal examples above. Tenoned ballcourt jewelry don't look till after the decline of Teotihuacan (Taladoire 2001) and aren't discovered at El Tajín, in any prior recognized Gulf lowland context, or in any Teotihuacan context. eight in its place, those past, transportable units are assumed to have served an analogous function because the everlasting tenoned markers, thereby explaining the connection of the transportable item to the ballgame within the imagery. those items may actually have served as portable markers of a few variety in a selected version of the Mesoamerican 22 lightning gods and feathered serpents rubber ballgame, as Taladoire (2003:319–320) has lately reconfirmed, yet there's growing to be facts that the items had different features in addition. Freidel, Schele, and Parker (1993:296–304) have convincingly argued that for the Maya those units served as anything such as struggle criteria as well as any functionality at the ballcourt. The authors have pointed out depictions of the units in scenes of struggle, similar to the past due vintage Maya work of art of Bonampak, in addition to in what are warfare-related ballgame ceremonies (see additionally Uriarte 2006).

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