Archaeological Park and Ruins of Quirigua

This is a small and little visited Mayan site surrounded by banana plantations which I reached by being dropped off an intercity coach at a small road junction and getting a tuk-tuk ride to the village of the same name.

Quirigua

Quirigua

The site is primarily significant for its group of large finely carved stone stelae rather than for the architecture. The stelae date from the 8th century and first appear after the city freed itself from subordination to Copan (a site I’ll be covering shortly) with the support of Calakmul – which was a rival to Copan’s ally Tikal. I do hope you are all keeping up with the Mayan politics, there may be a quiz later.

Quirigua

Quirigua

The stelae commemorate important events and dates and depict the rulers at over life-size with high relief faces but lower relief bodies. They are accompanied by glyph inscriptions.

Quirigua

Quirigua

There are also a number of low rounded carved rocks known as zoomorphs as they show mythological animals composited from elements of real creatures.

Quirigua

Quirigua

One of the stelae is the largest known single quarried stone in the Mayan world, standing 10.6m high and weighing around 60 tonnes. The Mayans did not have metal tools, just stone, wood and water.

 

Quirigua

Quirigua

 

Building a stele wasn’t really an option for the Lego model, so I’ve gone with a view of the site with some of them included.

Quirigua

Quirigua

I’ve omitted the thatched roofs that protect the sculptures from the elements.

Lego Quirigua

Lego Quirigua

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