Archaeologists of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) discovered a stone marker of the ancestral Ball Game, which presents a complete Mayan glyphic text surrounding two characters dressed as ball players.
According to a report released on Monday, April 10th, by INAH, the piece called “Disc of the Ball Players”, was found during the archaeological works carried out as part of the Program for the Improvement of Archaeological Zones, in the state of Yucatan.
The relevance of the finding lies in the fact that it is a sculptural element that preserves its complete glyphic text.
According to declarations of archaeologist Francisco Perez Ruiz, the monument functioned as a marker of some important event related to the Ball Game of the architectural complex Casa Colorada, a smaller court than the Great Ball Game of Chichen Itza.
The researcher estimates that this marker must correspond to the Terminal Classic or Early Postclassic period, between the end of 800 and the beginning of 900 AD.
Meanwhile, archaeologist Lizbeth Beatriz Mendicuti Pérez said that the piece was found in an inverted position, 58 centimeters from the surface, which suggests that it was part of the wall, and its final position was due to its collapse.
The marker has identified two figures dressed as ball players, standing in front of a ball.
One of the figures is wearing a feather headdress and a band with a flower-shaped element, probably a water lily.
At the level of the face a scroll is distinguished, which can be interpreted as a breath or voice.
The opponent wears a headdress recognized as a serpent turban, whose representation is observed on multiple occasions in Chichén Itzá.
In addition, the epigraphic band is composed of 18 cartouches with a short count date 12 Eb 10 Cumku, which points to the year 894 A.D., according to INAH.
The Ball Game is characteristic of Mesoamerican societies, which was more a ceremonial ritual than a sport and probably represented the symbolic recreation of the mythical combat between night and day.
In addition, specialists say that during this practice there were also bets and conflicts were resolved.