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Perspectives on the Ancient Maya of Chetumal Bay$
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Debra S. Walker

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780813062792

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: May 2017

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813062792.001.0001

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Sitting on the Dock of the Bay

Sitting on the Dock of the Bay

Ceramic Connections between Lamanai and the Chetumal Bay Area over More than Two Millennia

(p.162) 9 Sitting on the Dock of the Bay
Perspectives on the Ancient Maya of Chetumal Bay

Linda Howie

Terry G. Powis

Elizabeth Graham

University Press of Florida

In this chapter the authors examine change in interregional exchange networks across time. They focus on the movement of pottery across short distances between Chetumal Bay and the study site, Lamanai. The large urban center is 80 kilometers inland on the New River Lagoon. Rather than exotic goods, the authors isolate the movement of “redundant” material goods, presumed to have had less intrinsic value since they were produced locally in abundance. Using geological sourcing and petrographic analysis, they compare the origins of samples of Lamanai pottery in three transitional eras, the Terminal Preclassic, Terminal Classic, and Late Postclassic periods, to measure the connectedness of the trading communities. In terms of redundant ceramics, it appears the bay area influenced Lamanai at the Preclassic-Classic transition, while Lamanai provided a stronger influence on the bay area at the Terminal Classic–Postclassic boundary. At the time of European contact, Lamanai was again aligned with the bay area, particularly in terms of effigy censer distribution.

Keywords:   Lamanai, ceramic petrography, interregional exchange, geological sourcing, Terminal Preclassic, Terminal Classic, Late Postclassic

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