Sacred Sandstone of the Mayas


ALL archæologists are familiar with the work done on the remarkable Maya ruins at Chichen Itzá, in Yucatan, by Mr. Earl Morris and his associates, on behalf of the Carnegie Institution of Washington (see NATURE, 128, 692, Oct. 24, 1931). In the course of uncovering the large building now known as the Temple of the Warriors, Mr. Morris found an older temple underneath it, which he was able to explore by means of suitable tunnels. It was in the basement of this older building that he found the beautiful turquoise plaque, now carefully restored so far as the materials permitted, and deposited in the National Museum of Mexico. The centre of this plaque consists of a circular area which was filled with pieces of polished hæmatite, and beneath this, as Mr. Morris has fully explained in his recent book, is a disc of sandstone, of very ordinary quality, but not obtainable near Chichen Itzà.


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