By Cynthia Robin
The farming group of Chan thrived for over twenty centuries, surpassing the toughness of many better Maya city facilities. among 800 BC and 1200 advert it used to be a massive foodstuff creation middle, and this choice of essays unearths the $64000 position performed by means of Maya farmers within the improvement of historic Maya society.
Chan deals a synthesis of compelling and groundbreaking discoveries accrued over ten years of study at this one archaeological web site in Belize. The members improve 3 critical subject matters, which constitution the publication. They learn how sustainable farming practices maintained the encompassing wooded area, permitting the group to exist for 2 millennia. They hint the origins of elite Maya kingdom faith to the advanced non secular trust approach constructed in small groups similar to Chan. ultimately, they describe how the group-focused political concepts hired through neighborhood leaders differed from the hugely hierarchical ideas of the vintage Maya kings of their huge cities.
In breadth, method, and findings, this quantity scales new heights within the examine of Maya society and culture.
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Additional resources for Chan: An Ancient Maya Farming Community
22 · C. Robin, A. Wyatt, L. Kosakowsky, S. Juarez, E. Kalosky, and E. Enterkin Single mounds represent single family households and mound groups represent multiple or extended family households. For this presentation of survey data we retain the term mound group to describe Chan’s settlement, but subsequent chapters in this volume refer to these units as households, as identified in excavations. Terraces are one- to three-sided shelflike slope modification features. Groups of terraces are called terrace sets.
Not all residences in a community will be inhabited contemporaneously, particularly where there are extended family compounds and perishable houses, as at Chan. The residence of an older couple in a compound, upon their death, may go out of use for a time. Likewise, the residence of a young family may go out of use for a time when they move elsewhere in the community or to another community and start their own house compound. Given these issues of the developmental cycling of households and families (Goody 1971), an estimate of contemporaneity must be factored into population estimates.
Early Middle Preclassic Occupation (1000/800 BC–650 BC) Surface collection work did not identify any mound groups dating to the early Middle Preclassic period. Nor did excavations identify any in-situ occupation from this period. But as Laura Kosakowsky discusses in the next chapter, there may have been early ephemeral activity at Chan at this time, as highly eroded sherds from this period were found redeposited in the earliest fill layers. The only early Middle Preclassic ceramics identified at Chan come from the Central Group, suggesting that whatever activity existed in this period was focused on this area.