Universes in Universe

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The Lords of Death

In the Maya worldview there were a great many gods of the Underworld; they embodied the energy of death, an antithetical, but necessary element for life in the universe. They were usually depicted as skeletons with protruding ribs, fleshless extremities, and a belly bloated from foulness. Nevertheless, the deities all had their own name and specific attributes, such as Yum Kinil (God A), Lord of Death, Kisín or Cizín, The Bad Smelling One, or Aj Puch, The Skeleton.

Brick with depiction of Yum Kinil
Comalcalco, Tabasco
Terminal Classic (900 - 1000 AD)
Clay
Aj Puch as censer
Mayapán, Yucatán
Late Postclassic (1250 - 1527 AD)
Clay
Kisín
Chiapa de Corzo, Chiapas
Late Classic (600 - 900 AD)
Bone

© Photo: Haupt & Binder

The Maya - Language of Beauty

Touring exhibition of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH), Mexico. Information and photo tour through the presentation in Berlin, 2016.


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