Reading Pre-Columbian Artifacts

Investigate the Maya writing system by exploring the writing and hieroglyphs on vessels and artifacts.

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Recording History

Explore the nature of recorded history among the Maya and select examples from other areas of the world.

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Tortuguero Box

The Maya recorded dynastic lineage in varied ways, including architecture, ceramic vases and even wooden boxes. This wooden box, called the Tortuguero Box because its inscriptions are comparable to those found in Tortuguero, Mexico, is one such object. Its narrative begins with an image of the seventh-century lord who owned it. The subsequent hieroglyphs tell the dynasty of this ruler. An important class of ritual object, such wooden boxes were probably used to house bloodletting implements and other sacrificial paraphernalia.

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Conquest of Mexico Paintings

Explore the paintings that tell the story of the 1521 conquest of the Aztecs by Spanish conquistador Hernán Cortés.

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The Buccaneers of America

Explore the pages of The Buccaneers of America, chronicling the bold feats of raiders who disrupted shipping on the high seas and terrorized Caribbean settlements.

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Heavens and Earth

From children’s stories to modern science, people across the ages have explained and ordered the universe in visual forms in order to better comprehend it.

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Waldseemüller Maps

Examine the only surviving copies of what are arguably two of the most important maps in the history of cartography, the 1507 and 1516 world maps by Martin Waldseemüller.

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Historia Naturae

The Historia Naturae is an encyclopedic work that describes and categorizes the flora and fauna of North and South America, particularly of Mexico.

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