A team of archaeologists led by Stephen Houston has made a new discovery at the Maya archaeological site in El Zotz, Guatemala, uncovering a pyramid believed to celebrate the Maya sun god. The structure’s outer walls depict the god in an unprecedented set of images done in painted stucco. In 2010, the team uncovered a royal tomb filled with artifacts and human remains at the same site. Researchers believe the pyramid was built to link the deceased lord to the eternal sun.
PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — A team of archaeologists led by Brown University’s Stephen Houston has uncovered a pyramid, part of the Maya archaeological site at El Zotz, Guatemala. The ornately decorated structure is topped by a temple covered in a series of masks depicting different phases of the sun, as well as deeply modeled and vibrantly painted stucco throughout.
The team began uncovering the temple, called the Temple of the Night Sun, in 2009. Dating to about 350 to 400 A.D., the temple sits just behind the previously discovered royal tomb, atop the Diablo Pyramid. The structure was likely built after the tomb to venerate the leader buried there. (more…)