Archaeological dating systems

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Similar to other Mesoamerican cultures, the Maya employed a 365-day solar calendar (jaab') and a 260-day ritual cycle (tzolk'in).The jaab' is divided into 18 "months" of 20 days, plus 5 "unlucky" days at the end called wayeb'.These signs are either logograms (to express meaning) or syllabograms (to denote sound values), and are used to write words, phrases, and sentences.In fact, the Maya can write anything that they can say.The last indepedent Maya kingdom of Tayasal, fell as late as 1697.However, the Maya survived and there is estimated to be at least one million Mayas living in Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras today.So for example, the first day of the month Pop is 0 Pop, although in writing the "zero" is written with the glyph that means "seating" rather than the conch shell.

As a whole, the Maya people created the longest lasting civilization of the New World.

Of the many Maya languages, only two (possibly three) were written down with the hieroglyphic system.

It is thought that speakers of the Ch'olan language, and possibly also those of the Tzeltalan language, were the inventors of the Maya writing system.

In fact, each square is a glyph block that actually contain one to five glyphs, often forming a word or even a phrase.

The order to read Maya glyphs is also not as straightforward as it would seem.

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