Maya calendar

The Mayan calendar is astronomical calendar as the historical calendar system of the Maya. It is the most advanced calendar of Mesoamerican natives.


The Maya used for ritual and civil uses different, complementary calendar, based on a day count in the Twenties system: the ritual Tzolkin calendar, the civil Haab calendar and the Long Count, could be detected with the longer periods of time, and for celestial observations historical records played a major role. The combinations of the Tzolkin and Haab data are repeated after a 52- year-long calendar round.

The Haab is a solar calendar with a five -day intercalation, but without being tied to the lunar phases. The Tzolkin calendar is - not bound to the solar or lunar rhythm - in contrast to most other historical and modern calendar systems. There was much speculation as to which astronomical or other specifications follows this complex system. A conclusive answer is still pending and is currently not expected because of poor source material.

For the conversion of a date of the Mayan calendar in other calendar systems, in particular the European Julian or Gregorian calendar is a correlation number is used to denote the difference between the numerical value of the Long Count of the Maya and the Julian day. Despite many different approaches, the so-called Thompson equation of 584 284 ± 1 days is accepted and applied by the majority of experts.

Full dates

The anniversary of his death (August 28, 683 ) of the ruler Pacal of Palenque I. is in the Mayan calendar 6 Edznab 11 Yax.

This means (see following section): 9 Baktun periods 9 * 144,000 = 1.296 million days 12 Katun periods 12 * 7,200 = 86,400 days 11 Do -period 11 * 360 = 3960 days 5 Uinal periods 5 * 20 = 100 days 18 Kin ( days) 18 * 1 = 18 days

That adds up to 1,386,478 that is, Pacal of Palenque I. died 1386478 days after creation of the world (August 13, 3114 BC).

Here are the day as Long Count to 6 Edznab the day in the Tzolkin Calendar and 11 Yax is the day in the Haab calendar.

Periods in the Mayan Calendar

Kin, Uinal, Tun, Katun, Baktun, pictun, Calabtun, Kinchiltun and Alautun are designations for periods in the Long Count of the Maya calendar. The terms higher than Baktun are modern inventions of researchers, the original names are not known. These high numbers are found only in a small number of inscriptions and the Dresden Maya Codex.

Long Count

The Long Count of days required for the Mayan astronomical calculations and the historical record. The individual points ( as ) each run of [0 .19 ], [ .19 0 ], [0 .19 ], [ .17 0 ], [0 .19 ], the first Baktun of the calendar instead of 0 Baktun was once called deviation 13 Baktun. Therefore, the long count represents a date is, with each day since the beginning of the calendar on August 11, 3114 BC ( 4 Ahau 8 Cumku ) can be uniquely specified. The oldest found so far Mayan monument on the date 7 baktun 16 katun 3 actions 2 Uinal 13 children can be dated BC therefore to the December 5th 36.

It is noticeable that the beginning of the calendar ( 4 Ahau 8 Cumku ) and the beginning of the next baktun ( 4 Ahau 3 K'ank'in = 21 or December 23, 2012 ) the date constituent of, 4 Ahau of the Tzolkin calendar. The tzolkin date 4 Ahau refers according to the mythology of the Maya to the first four people or men ( Ahau ) of the current creation, the people of corn. The repetition of this date ingredient after 13 baktun is no coincidence. For the least common multiple of the 260 -day tzolkin calendar and a baktun is 144,000 days lasting 1,872,000 days after reached ( = 13 Baktun ). It can be shown mathematically that this property applies counted from the Uinal for all other time units of Langen. The significant tzolkin date 4 Ahau thus occurs even after 13 Uinal, 13 Tun, 13 katun, 13 pictun, 13 Calabtun etc. again, as can be easily verified. It is the author Marcel Polte According to the same time are the answer to the so far unresolved question of why the Maya as the "Year " or do put a period of 360 days in the Long Count is based, although they of a very precise knowledge of the actual duration had solar year and the Haab calendar covered 365 days. By shortening the "Year" to an act of 360 days, this 4- Ahau date was set back to 13 Tun- cycles; for an action with 365 days this would not have worked.


The Haab ' was the Maya to civilian purposes, such as to calculate the sowing and harvesting times and resembles our calendar, since it comprises of 365 days around a solar year. In the Haab calendar, the year is divided into 18 " months " of 20 days each and a 19th " month " with 5 " unlucky days ". According to Diego de Landa, the Maya have also inserted a leap day every fourth year. However, de Landa gives no information about how to receive it, the parallel run of Haab and Tzolkin remained. Whether actually leap days were used in the absence of other sources therefore not known. For this reason, no statement about the beginning of the Haab can be made in pre-Hispanic times.

  • Standard Inskriptionsformen (?) Until month 4 and 15

Month 02: Uo

Month 03: Zip

Month 04: Zotz ( Sotz ')

Month 05: Zec ( sec)

Month 06: Xul

Month 07: Yaxkin ( yaxk'in )

Month 08: mole

Month 09: Chen ( Ch'en )

Month 10: Yax

Month 11: Zac ( Sak )

Month 12: Ceh

Month 13: Mac ( Mak )

Month 14: kankin

Month 15: Muan

Month 16: Pax

Month 17: Kayab

Month 18: Cumku

Month 19: Uayeb / Wayeb ( " calamity days "; leap month with only 5 days )


For ritual purposes, the Maya used the Tzolkin ( "Count the Days" ), in which each day ( Kin) by a combination of a number ( tone ) of 1 to 13 with the name of one of the 20 guardian deities (or day names ) referred. A Tzolkin date therefore referred to a particular day in a period of 260 days and is expressed for example as 6 Edznab.

Calendar round

Since the Haab calendar has 365 days and the Tzolkin calendar has 260 days, all 18,980 days or 52 Haab years and 73 Tzolkin years repeat the combinations of Haab and Tzolkin data. This period is called the calendar round, within which a combination of Haab and Tzolkin date is clear.

" Weltuntergangstag "

Particular attention was paid in esoteric circles 21 and 23 December 2012. They wanted to see a supposed " Weltuntergangstag " of the Mayan creation here. According to Mayan researchers, this was completely inappropriate content. It is correct that BC is the numerical value of the starting day of the current thirteenth baktun cycle of the Long Count recurred ( ) on this day in the Long Count for the first time since the year 3114. This numerical value occurs after the schematic of the Mayan calendar on a regular basis after 1,872,000 days (about 5128 years ). The dates of the Long Count, however, differ in the recurrence by a different position in the Haab year. So the date falls in the year 3114 BC to the day 8 Cumku, in 2012 on the day 3 Kankin, then on 18 Ch'en, etc. The Maya proven over the closing tag of the Baktun - cycle both widely expected in the past and in the future associated with these data mythic- dynastic events. Thus, a Jubilee of the ruler Pakal in 4772 is mentioned.

The date 4 Ahau 8 Cumku was regarded by the Maya as the date of creation of the world in its present form. However, so far no inscriptions have been found that 4 Ahau would indicate the beginning of a new creation on days 3 Kankin in 2012. Only the inscription Monument 6 from the ( no longer existing ) Locality El Tortuguero west of Palenque refers to this date and speaks cryptically from the fact that on this day the deity Bolon Yokte ' K'uh in a great act of clothing and presentation ( a public official ) will occur.

In a publication of the Science reports of the discovery of a calendar from the 9th century in the ruins of the Mayan stronghold Xultun in present-day Guatemala. U.S. researchers have discovered there murals dating from the 9th century, showing human figures next to the hitherto oldest astronomical calendar of the Maya. The study leader William A. Saturno said: " The ancient Maya predicted that the world would go on and that things in 7000 years would be like today."