An Obscure Text from Tonina

Some years ago Linda Schele took photographs (one below) of a partial stucco inscription at Tonina.  I have never seen this personally, and I have no idea where it is at the ruins.  Despite its murky details and the thick moss in places, I think the glyphs can be tentatively teased out as follows (reconstructed elements are in square brackets):


pA1: [10-4-WINIK-ji-ya]

pB1: 16-HAAB-ya

pA2: u-ti-[ya]

pB2: [8]-AJAW

pA3: I-u-ti

pB3: 10-OK

pA4: [18]-TZIKIN-ni (the month “Xul”)

pB4: U-3-?-TE'(?)

So, we have a straightforward calendrical reckoning here, a distance number of 16.8.10 linking 8 Ajaw to a later date written as 10 Ok 18 Xul. This can only be:   8 Ajaw 8 Wo   10 Ok 18 Xul

These are two familiar dates at Tonina.  The first is obviously a key k’atun-ending, much recorded in the site’s inscriptions. The second date. as seen in an earlier post here on Maya Decipherment, is a station of the strange 9.2.5 “chinstrap” cycle recorded in several Tonina inscriptions, but nowhere else.  This was the third such station in the reign of the ruler K’inich Baaknal Chahk, and the final semi-preserved glyph may simply mark this. There I can just make out a possible “chinstrap” sign after U-3-, and above what could be a Pax patron head variant of TE’. The name of the king would have likely followed just after this.

Might anyone know just where this text is located at Tonina? Do the poor glyphs still even exist? I’m not sure when Linda took her slide, but I suspect it was on a visit no later than the mid-90s.  If anyone has info, I would much appreciate hearing it.

UPDATE: I had assumed this is of stucco, perhaps still attached to a masonry wall somewhere. But I could be wrong — looking again, it could be a stone fragment.

UPDATE (03/08/10): In the original post I gave a mistaken Long Count placement of the 10 Ok date (thanks to Jesus Mora for pointing this out in his comment). The correct date is given above — 10 Ok 18 Xul.

2 thoughts on “An Obscure Text from Tonina

    • David Stuart March 8, 2010 / 5:01 PM

      Of course you are correct! I must have preserved a typo somewhere in the process, or made a simple math error (not the first time!). Thanks. I have corrected it in the original post so as not to cause confusion.

Leave a Reply