Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed

about

The ruined cities of the ancient Maya have captured our imaginations since news of their discovery in the jungles of Central America was published in the 1840s. Extensive research has uncovered a culture with a sophisticated worldview that, during its Classic period (250-900 AD), rivaled any civilization in Europe.

Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed uses a combination of hundreds of authentic artifacts, immersive environments, multimedia components, and hands-on exhibits to explore the rise and eventual decline of these fascinating ancient cities to the artisans and laborers who formed the backbone of Maya society.

Visitors will see spectacular examples of Maya artistry made by masters of their craft, along with objects from everyday life. They will get a close look at the scientific work being carried out at key Maya sites across Central America to understand exactly how we know what we know of the once-hidden Maya of the ancient past.

Exhibit Highlights

  • More than 230 Maya artifacts
  • Over two dozen hands-on interactive components
  • Explore how explorers and archaeologists have peeled back the rain forests to reveal the great Maya cities and begin to investigate similarities and relationships between them
  • Examine the written histories of royal dynasties and stories of conquests through stone sculptures, including the famous Altar Q from Copan
  • Master builders. The ancient Maya used and modified every inch of their landscape to support large populations. Explore the social organization and engineering required for the cities and surrounding areas to function
  • Discover the domestic world of the Maya through hands-on activities, archaeological and ethnographic objects, and botanical specimens
  • Enter a recreated tomb, see burial items and skeletal remains, and learn about the many facets of information—from relative wealth of individuals to overall health of populations—that funerary materials can provide

Video

Exhibit Gallery