Volume 2 / Issue 2


Issue Cover

On the cover: Part of a decorative carved band on a cylindrical tripod vessel found in a grave in Tikal, Guatemala, by the University Museum's expedition during the 1959 field season. The band depicts two priests receiving a file of warriors who carry throwing sticks and spears. The vessel is believed to have been made at Teotihuacan in the Valley of Mexico, a thousand miles northwest of Tikal.
Drawing by Norman J. Johnston.

The Amazonian House

A Place of Women's Politics, Pottery, and Prestige

By: Brenda J. Bowser

Dusk was falling in the Amazonian house. Two men sat silently. The host was dressed for war, his face painted red, wearing his feathered headdress, his shotgun propped beside him against the house post. The visitor sat facing him. Silents, a woman appeared from behind her husband. No one spoke until she served chicha beer […]

States, Chiefdoms, and Tribes

By: William Davenport

In social and cultural anthropology, the term “chieftainship” refers to a form of government in which there are fixed political offices with designated authority over defined territories and the people living within their boundaries. The political offices of a chieftainship have minimal advisory and administrative powers, but there are always defined rules of succession for […]

Louis Shotridge

By: J. Alden Mason

Formerly the Museum made a practice of having an American Indian as Assistant in the American Section. Dressed in his native costume, he appealed greatly to the school classes–especially to the younger grades, who listened to his talks on Indian life and customs more avidly than they would to any white teacher. At various times […]

Maya “Long Count” Numbers

By: Linton Satterthwaite

The new earliest “Long Count” or “Initial Series” date on Tikal Stela 29 is transcribed as “ 13 Men 3 Zip.” We here compare it with a random date in our own Christian Civil Calendar system, hoping to bring out similarities as well as differences for the edification of the mildly curious reader. The left […]


photo of wall
Phrygian Construction and Architecture

By: Rodney S. Young

The traveller in Near Eastern lands cannot help but be struck by the hundreds of ancient mounds–Tels or Tepes or Huyuks, as they are called locally–which dot every landscape, from Teheran to Baghdad to Ankara. When he alights at one which is being dug by archaeologists, as at Gordion, his first question almost invariably is […]

Tikal Stela 29

The oldest dated Lowland Maya monument is unearthed in the jungles of Guatemala. For a discussion of Maya dates the reader is referred to the accompanying article by Linton Satterthwaite.

By: Edwin M. Shook

Just short of a century ago, in 1864, canal diggers working in the steaming heat of a coastal swamp a few miles northeast of the present Puerto Barrios, Guatemala’s Caribbean seaport, had no premonition that the next shovel load of muck, thrown out on the low embankment, would bring to light one of the most […]

An Etruscan Tomb-Guardian

By: Ellen L. Kohler

The Etruscans are still a mysterious people to us because at the present state of our knowledge we cannot answer the question of their origin. This, our misfortune, is partially due to the fact that twelve cemeteries are all that remain of the great loose confederacy of twelve cities which thrived in Central Italy in […]


More and Better Archaeologists

By: A.V. Kidder

This article, from The Proceedings of the American Philosophical Society, Vol. 83, and here reprinted under a new title and with a few very minor changes, represents the distillation of long thinking about the history of mankind seen from the perspective of the archaeologist. It is a broader perspective than that of most historians, both […]


A Map of the Central Portion of a Famous Maya Ruin in the Lowlands of Guatemala

Mapping at Tikal has been going on since the 1957-58 season. It is a slow, difficult job, made so by the uneven terrain, the vast number of mounds and still standing structures, and the heavy jungle. This map, designed by Aubrey trik and drawn by Norman J. Johnston of the School of Fine Arts of […]

Where in the World?

Photo for Where in the World Game

We thought and thought when we first saw the color slide from which this picture was made but couldn’t identify it. Can you? The answer is on page 39. The slide was made by Mr. Aubre Givier of Philadelphia to whom we are very grateful for permitting us to use it here. The Authors RODNEY […]