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Ritual, Violence, and the Fall of the Classic Maya Kings$
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Gyles Iannone, Brett A. Houk, and Sonja A. Schwake

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062754

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: January 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062754.001.0001

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Social-Political Manifestations of the Terminal Classic

Social-Political Manifestations of the Terminal Classic

Colha, Northern Belize, as a Case Study

(p.187) 8 Social-Political Manifestations of the Terminal Classic
Ritual, Violence, and the Fall of the Classic Maya Kings

Palma J. Buttles

Fred Valdez

University Press of Florida

The prehistoric Maya site of Colha and a Terminal Classic event at the site (human decapitation) serve as a case study for significant social-political changes. The nature of the violent and dramatic event suggests changes that were quite intentional for removing the form of political organization that previously failed the society of Colha. Various scenarios may help explain the changes in Maya society at Colha at the end of the Terminal Classic, however, regardless of motivations, incentives, etc. it is clear the end is shown to be a significantly violent event with a clear message to the ruling family and their supporters.

Keywords:   Maya, Terminal Classic, Skull Pit, Decapitation, Collapse, Transformation

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