|About the Book|
The Maya built one of the great ancient civilizations in the New World, between AD 250 and 900. Famed for over 150 years for its cities buried deep in the Central American jungle, the origins of Maya culture have, nevertheless, remained obscure until quite recently. Over the past two decades, the Preclassic origins of complex society in the Maya area have been established by a series of innovative research projects. Among the best known of these is the study of Cuello, the earliest-known ancient Maya settlement. Excavations at Cuello over several seasons from 1975 to 1987 have yielded an unmatched picture of a pioneer tropical forest community. In this volume the origins of Maya civilization 1500 years ago are documented with detailed evidence on the environment, economy, buildings, crafts, ritual practices, burials and artistic imagery.