1997   1998   1999   2000   2001   Hilites The Temple XIX Inscriptions

David Stuart's reading of the west side of the Temple XIX hieroglyphic platform.
David Stuart's reading of the ruler's name: K'inich Ahkal Mo' Nahb' III.


One of the most exciting aspects of our recent discoveries at Palenque is the contribution made possible to the history of the site. As science discovered only recently, the Maya were by no means "prehistoric". They recorded their history in the hieroglyphics on their monuments. The decipherment of those glyphs by specialists known as epigraphers has opened a window into their world.

With every new inscription found, we learn a little more. And now the Palenque Project has been fortunate in finding a treasure trove of new hieroglyphs. Project epigrapher David Stuart, renowned Harvard professor and MacArthur genius award winner, has begun the process of decipherment. He has already made an exciting breakthrough in re-naming the ruler to whom Temple XIX was dedicated.

The ruler formerly known as K'inich Akul Anab III (and before that Chaacal and Lord Chaac) was one of Palenque's greatest lords. His building program rivaled that of the famous Pakal the Great. Taking over the throne of Palenque after the capture of his predecessor by Toniná, he may have ruled for decades. (Part of our quest is to discover the date of his death.)

And now David Stuart has re-interpreted the glyphs and announced to the world a reading of this ruler's real name: K'inich Ahkal Mo' Nahb' III.

Dr. Stuart is in the final stages of completing a monograph on the Temple XIX inscriptions that will be available from the Pre-Columbian Art Research Institute (PARI).

Genealogy of Palenque rulers.

The name glyph of K'inich K'an Joy Chitam I, from the Temple XIX hieroglyphic platform.