Footsteps of Hopi History or Inscriptions by Spanish Priests? The Elusive and Enigmatic Labyrinth Glyphs of the American West
This is an abstract from the "The Role of Rock Art in Cultural Understanding: A Symposium in Honor of Polly Schaafsma" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.
Meaning and function of rock art elements, especially when related to site location, have been discussed for years. Rock art can represent statements about group identity or social relationships and even demark boundaries or territories. Rock art is a visual legacy created to communicate and reaffirm symbols and metaphors of stories and worldviews projecting social concerns and cultural values. Rock art stores cultural meaning. A distinctive unicursal, 7-course, 8-walled labyrinth image is carved into the plaster on the wall above the second floor of the central room at Casa Grande Ruins National Monument. This same glyph has been reported on the Hopi Mesas, at Arroyo Hondo NM, inside the lower room of Montezuma Castle, inside the upper ruins at Tonto National Monument and at Minnie’s Gap in Wyoming. Intriguingly, this image is also found across Europe and is reported to be at least 4,000 years old. How did it come to appear in the Southwest? Was it an independent innovation, or transplanted by Spanish priests among the converted? This image carries a lot of meaning and symbolism. My research focuses on the origins of this image in the Western U.S., its relative age, and its symbolic significance for Native peoples.
Cite this Record
Footsteps of Hopi History or Inscriptions by Spanish Priests? The Elusive and Enigmatic Labyrinth Glyphs of the American West. Kirk Astroth, T. J. Ferguson, Caitlin McPherson. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 450468)
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min long: -124.365; min lat: 25.958 ; max long: -93.428; max lat: 41.902 ;
Abstract Id(s): 22826