Discovery of a new cycle in the Mayan calendar


Professor Guillermo Bernal Romero of the Autonomous National University of Mexico (UNAM) announced the discovery of a new cycle of the Mayan calendar that had been inadvertently missed in classical studies.

The academy of Center of Mayan Studies of the Philological Investigations Institute (IIFL) detailed that the discovery was made in the east board, found in building I of the XVI group in Palenque Chiapas in 1993. This discovery gave the clue to a calendar cycle of 63 days which, more than a thousand years later, the meaning in the ancient Mayan stucco has finally been found.

The new cycle was discovered last April after considering the dates of the other known cycles of seven, nine and 819 days and by multiplying the first two (9×7=63) and then by multiplying this last figure by 13 (63×13=819) which shows that it is not a whim of the Mayans but that they are holy days.

Upon reconstruction, the historian proved that the period was associated with the fire drill ritual (joch´ k´ahk´), a frictional generation of a ritual fire dedicated to opossum god or tlacuache. He explained that the Mayans believed in the existence of the “overworld” or a celestial region of 13 levels, a land region (ours) with seven layers and an underworld with nine levels. It has been proposed that the figure of 819 days was formulated to perform calculations of the synodic periods of time that it takes for an object to return to the same point in the sky.

Despite the notable development in Mayan epigraphy and the deciphering of historical events and myths that relate to the inscriptions, the calendar still has unforeseen aspects. “There are numerical relations between dates that reveal the existence of other cycles that we don’t know about, this is perhaps the most important part about this discovery” said the professor. “The work performed is partial and therefore it is highly possible that we may find reconstructions of more dates and events.”

The investigation could take another year but the work that has been carried out up to this point has given some first results. Finally the investigator declared that this is just a detail of a larger work in Palenque where general reconstruction work is taking place of the dynastic history of this emblematic city from the Classic Mayan period.


“Descubren nuevo ciclo en el calendario Maya”,, 2014-06-22