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Glyph block


Not on view

Each of these blocks bears three to five signs that, together, convey words or phrases. Maya writing combined syllables and logograms—signs that carry meaningful linguistic units or morphemes. Though their delineation varied, they were often shaped as the heads of humans, animals, or deities. Respectively, this block spells the phrase unah tal . . . (his first . . . [undeciphered]).

Templo XVIII, Palenque, Chiapas, México
Siglo VII al VIII

La escritura maya combinaba sílabas y logogramas –signos que contienen unidades lingüísticas significativas o morfemas–. Aunque los trazos varían, a menudo tienen forma de cabezas humanas, de animales o de deidades. Cada uno de estos bloques contiene tres o cuatro signos que en conjunto forman palabras o frases; en este se lee, respectivamente, unah tal… (su primer… [indescifrable]).

Glyph block, Stucco, Maya

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Secretaría de Cultura–Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH), Mexico, reproduction authorized by INAH; photo by Jorge Perez de Lara