University of Texas at Austin

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Mayan expert explains 2012

David Stuart

David Stuart

If the world does end in 2012, do not blame it on the ancient Mayans.

The current disaster movie “2012″ apparently says the world ends in 2012 because that’s when the Mayan calendar ends. Other 2012-end-of-the-world scenarios also bring the Mayan calendar into it.

David Stuart, a Mayan expert at The University of Texas at Austin, has worked with the Mayan text that some say heralds the end of the world. And he says it’s not so.

In a Q and A on his blog, Maya Decipherment, he explains that the Mayan calendar does not end in 2012. Nor does text he deciphered some years ago indicate doomsday in 2012.

Stuart writes about this in his blog. Here’s an extract:

“A few years ago I put forward a very tentative and incomplete reading of these damaged glyphs (at a site called Tortuguero), including a possible use of a verb meaning “descend” and a name of a god, Bolon Yokte’. Much of it was iffy and remains so; I’m not sure I believe much of what I wrote back then.

“More recently my colleague (Brown University professor) Steve Houston has pointed out the glyphs may not even pertain to that date anyway. So there’s considerable ambiguity just in the reading of the glyphs and the rhetorical structure of the Tortuguero passage.

“What we can say with confidence is that the ancient Maya left no clear or definite record about 2012 and its significance. There is certainly no ancient claim that the world or any part of it will come to an end.”

Find more about Stuart’s take on the Maya and 2012 at

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1 Comment to "Mayan expert explains 2012"

1.  2012 says

What happen in 2012? is difficult to tell, we’ll see about that….

January 31, 2010


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