Revisiting the Archaeology of Palenque: 25 Years after "The Children of the First Mother"

Author(s): Damien Marken

Year: 2015


As the site of many of the epigraphic breakthroughs that fully brought the Classic Maya into realm of history, Palenque, Chiapas, Mexico holds an important place in Maya studies. In the Forest of Kings, Linda Schele and David Freidel brought together one of the first truly comprehensive descriptions of the history of a Classic period royal family. Perhaps more significantly, they put forth a narrative of dynastic legitimization through writing and monumental construction that has endured and been applied across the Maya lowlands. This paper will briefly review the impact of subsequent investigations and discoveries at the site on how archaeologists today interpret this narrative. While little was known about the archaeology of Palenque beyond the monumental core in 1990, research by several Mexican and foreign projects over the past 20 years has greatly expanded the scope of our understanding of the ancient city’s development and organization.

SAA 2015 abstracts made available in tDAR courtesy of the Society for American Archaeology and Center for Digital Antiquity Collaborative Program to improve digital data in archaeology. If you are the author of this presentation you may upload your paper, poster, presentation, or associated data (up to 3 files/30MB) for free. Please visit for instructions and more information.

Cite this Record

Revisiting the Archaeology of Palenque: 25 Years after "The Children of the First Mother". Damien Marken. Presented at The 80th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, San Francisco, California. 2015 ( tDAR id: 395947)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -107.271; min lat: 12.383 ; max long: -86.353; max lat: 23.08 ;